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San Diego Fraud Defense Attorneys

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If you are under investigation for or have been accused of fraud, it is of the utmost importance to contact a capable lawyer immediately. Fraud is a federal offense and can carry harsh penalties, including years of incarceration in a state prison, fines and more. San Diego Criminal Attorney James N. Dicks has experience in dealing with federal investigators and prosecutors and won't back down simply because they use aggressive interrogation techniques or try to intimidate you into accepting a plea bargain. There are many forms of fraud, which can be committed by any group of individuals, any company, or any organization that deceives consumers, clients, or investors.

These types of fraud include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Accounting Fraud
  • Bank Fraud
  • Credit Card Fraud
  • False Charities
  • Government Fraud
  • Investment Fraud
  • Mail Fraud
  • Mortgage Fraud
  • Overbilling
  • Phishing
  • Wire Fraud

If you have been charged with the crime of organized fraud, contact jD Law Criminal Defense Attorneys at (760) 630-2000 for the legal guidance you need! Our firm offers completely free and confidential case evaluations.

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Accounting Fraud Charges

Misusing and misdirecting funds, along with overstating assets and revenues and understating liabilities and expenses, comprises accounting fraud. This "creative accounting" creates a deceiving image of a company's success and serves to defraud investors, customers, and shareholders. Most often perpetrated by executives in public companies, accounting fraud can total in thousands to millions or even billions of dollars of losses.

Most often, restitution, along with jail or probation, is the sentence for an accounting fraud charge. But when the amount of restitution required is more than all of your personal assets combined, what can you do?

In the case of accounting fraud charges, federal crimes investigators and prosecutors are often involved. In these situations, the SEC or other government agencies may have spent months and even years amassing evidence against a person or company. These agencies will not press charges or make the case public in any way until they have a strong case backed by physical evidence. Government prosecutors will likely show no leniency in negotiating a settlement or alternative or lessened sentencing in case of a trial.

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Bank Fraud Charges

Bank fraud, or defrauding a federally insured bank, is a federal offense that can carry a state prison sentence of up to 20 years and/or fines of up to $250,000. If you have been accused of bank fraud of any kind, it is of the utmost importance to contact a skilled San Diego criminal defense attorney who has experience in fraud defense and theft crimes.

With any bank fraud charge comes pressure and attention from federal investigators and prosecutors. These federal agencies may have spent months or years building evidence and a case against you. Fortunately, Attorney James N. Dicks has the resources and personnel needed to conduct our own investigation and find any instances where your rights may have been violated or may be able to prove that you did not commit bank fraud at all.

Bank fraud can refer to any defrauding or providing false information to a bank, credit union or savings and loan association. Common forms of bank fraud include:

  • ATM fraud
  • Online bank fraud
  • Forging signatures on checks
  • Creating counterfeit checks
  • Deceiving a bank in a real estate or mortgage loan application

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Credit Card Fraud Charges

Credit card fraud is an increasing form of fraud and identity theft that involves either generating fake credit cards or stealing credit card information from other people. This most often occurs over the Internet but can also occur by a credit card being physically stolen. While the public as a whole is becoming increasingly aware of credit card fraud, new software and technology have enabled credit card fraud to continue to occur.

We defend all types of credit card fraud cases, including:

  • Phishing
  • Stolen credit cards
  • Fake or counterfeit credit cards
  • Computer-generated card numbers
  • Credit card fraud through the mail
  • Fake websites or site cloning to get credit card information
  • Fake businesses created to obtain card information

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Government Fraud Charges

Tax fraud, false or overstated invoicing for government contracts, and health care fraud all fall under the category of government fraud and are viewed as federal crimes. Government fraud cases must be handled by an attorney skilled in defending federal cases.

There are many forms of fraud against the government that we can represent:

  • Tax fraud cases involving individuals or organizations
  • Health care, Medicare or Medicaid fraud charges
  • Overstated invoices or fraudulent practices involving federal agencies
  • Fraudulently reported inventories of federally regulated materials such as drugs

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Investment Fraud Charges

Investment fraud, or securities fraud, involves deceiving investors into investing in a company that has been misrepresented, in a situation where the seller failed to fully disclose the actual financial condition of the company, or as a result of a number of other violations, with the investor usually losing the money contributed to the company or firm.

There are many regulations on:

  • What type of investor can be contacted
  • The words that can be used by the salesperson
  • What the broker says about the investment
  • How the investment must be presented

Any violation in investments and securities is heavily punished and the individual may be forced to suffer years in federal prison, as well as losing all personal assets, if the court believes this is warranted. The scope of the operation, the individuals involved, and any earlier violations can make the defense of the case more complex.

In making any type of investment, the consumer/investor has a responsibility to investigate the company before making a decision. By using the defense of the obligation to investigate, your attorney may be able to prove that you did not intentionally or willfully defraud an investor. In addition to using forensic evidence and witness testimony to support the case for your defense, there are opportunities for success in federal court.

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Mail Fraud Charges

Every year, thousands of people are arrested for suspected mail theft throughout the United States. Stealing mail and using mail as a means to defraud are both federal offenses that are harshly penalized. Mail fraud occurs when mail is used to defraud people, and can actually encompass a wide variety of white collar crimes, all committed through or using the mail, such as credit card fraud, investment fraud, prescription drug fraud, and more.

While mail fraud crimes are usually easy to prove with physical evidence, federal prosecutors still have the task of proving intent. In order to be convicted of mail fraud, you must have intentionally and purposefully defrauded or attempted to defraud by means of mail. You must have planned to commit fraud and intentionally created a scheme for your personal gain.

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Mortgage Fraud Charges

In today's declining real estate market, many brokers, loan officers, and realtors find themselves the targets of investigations intended to expose mortgage fraud. Almost anyone involved in the process of a mortgage loan or real estate transaction is potentially liable.

Individuals at risk of such charges include the following:

  • Appraisers
  • Mortgage brokers
  • Banks
  • Realtors
  • Real estate agents
  • Lenders
  • Loan officers
  • Homebuyers

There are many defense techniques we can use—from disproving evidence the prosecution provides to using constitutional rights violations to suppress evidence or information. For instance, the prosecution must prove your intent in mortgage fraud. It is not enough to simply have the paperwork that shows you provided fraudulent information on any loan document, real estate application or mortgage loan application. The prosecution must prove that you intentionally and purposefully misreported financial or other information in order to defraud.

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Organized Fraud Charges

Organized fraud is an increasingly common occurrence. Often organized groups from other countries will defraud Americans using get-rich-quick schemes, phishing or other forms of communication to fraudulently obtain financial information. Companies and organizations within the United States have also been accused of and convicted for organized fraud. A not-for-profit organization or charitable group may be accused of using donations and government grants for personal profit, or may be accused of overbilling.

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Wire Fraud Charges

Wire fraud occurs when a person knowingly defrauds or attempts to defraud a person or persons by using interstate wire communications such as the following:

  • Television
  • Telephone
  • Radio
  • Internet Modem

This is a federal offense and is punishable by up to 20 years in state prison, along with fines. If a financial institution is affected, this is punishable by a state prison sentence of up to 30 years and/or a fine of up to $1,000,000. In addition to being backed by federal crimes law enforcement authorities, wire fraud charges are complex and often involve extensive federal investigations long before charges are ever filed.

To discuss your case in a free, confidential consultation, contact our firm at (760) 630-2000.

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Sample of Case Results

  • Fraudulent Appropriation by Clerk -
    Charges Reduced to an Infraction
  • Insurance Adjuster Charged with Fraud -
    Not Guilty

View more case results here.

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James N. Dicks

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