Credit Card Theft, Fraud and Forgery
Elizabeth NJ Credit Card Theft, Fraud or Forgery Offense
There are a wide variety of crimes involving credit cards filed in Union County every year and they all end up in Elizabeth New Jersey. The reason is because all credit card charges are indictable in nature (i.e. crime of the second, third or fourth degree) and the Union County Superior Court in Elizabeth has sole jurisdiction to deal with offenses of this severity. The municipal court in Cranford, Elizabeth, Union, Clark, Westfield or any other town lacks authority to decide credit forgery, theft or fraud charges. The attorneys at our firm know this fact well as members of The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, the largest Union County Criminal Firm. Our defense lawyers are former prosecutors and skilled advocates that have been fighting for those charged with credit card violations for several decades. To speak to an attorney on our staff, contact our Union Township Office now at 908-272-1700 for a free consultation.
Credit Card Theft: Section 2C:21-6(c)
The most prevalent N.J.S.A. 2C:21-6 offense is credit card theft which involves stealing credit cards of another person. Subsection (c) of the credit card law provides that it shall constitute a “theft” for someone to take a credit card without the cardholder’s consent, to take a card that is lost, mislaid or mistakenly delivered, or to buy a credit card from someone other than the issuer. Less commonly, persons may also charged with credit card theft when they obtain a credit card to secure a debt or through the unauthorized signing of a credit card. Credit card theft is typically a crime of the fourth degree.
Credit Card Fraud: Section 2C:21-6(b)
The credit card fraud is another pedigree of this category of criminal offense. Credit card fraud can be broken down into two scenarios: (1) providing false information to obtain a credit card; or (2) the unauthorized use of credit cards. It is “fraud” to provide false or misleading information to obtain a credit card in accordance with N.J.S.A. 2C:21-6(b). This false statement could be made directly or indirectly, with the intent that it be relied upon in furtherance of obtaining a credit card. The burden is on the prosecutor to prove that the statement was knowingly false, and not just accidental. Credit card fraud can typically result in being charged with a crime of the third or fourth degree.
Credit Card Forgery: 2C:21-6(d)
The third form of N.J.S.A. 2C:21-6 charge is forgery involving a credit card. In this regard, subsection (d) provides that it is a crime to counterfeit, alter, or use a credit card that is forged, revoked or expired under N.J.S.A. 2C:21-6(d). Section 2C:21-6(d) of the statute also renders it fraudulent to misrepresent ones identity as that of the true cardholder, or to misrepresent the authority and consent of the cardholder to use the card. Credit card forgery is typically a crime of the third degree.
Fines, Penalties and Consequences for a Credit Card Offense Convictions
Credit card offenses are typically a third degree crime or fourth degree crime. The penalties for a third degree credit card offense include up to 5 years in prison and a fine of up to $15,000. A fourth degree credit card charge results in up to 18 months of incarceration and a maximum fine of $10,000. Perhaps even more devastating then this direct penalties is the fact that someone convicted of credit card theft, fraud, or forgery has a felony criminal record that can derail a career path and interfere with finding employment for many years. It can also interfere with a defendant’s ability to secure or maintain immigration status since these are all violations that are considered crimes of moral turpitude.
Get Help With Credit Card Theft, Fraud, or Forgery Charges From a Union, NJ Criminal Lawyer
If you would like to learn more about the Credit Card laws that apply to your Union County case or are seeking representation, one of the lawyers at The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall is available to assist you. Our attorneys have over 100 years of combined experience defending all varieties of credit card case. Whether you were charged in Scotch Plains, Linden, Summit, Plainfield, Rahway or another municipality, a lawyer who is equipped with the knowledge necessary to protect you is here at our firm. Do not hesitate to give us a call anytime 24/7 at 908-272-1700 to speak to an attorney or to arrange an appointment at our Union County law office.