Penalties for Identity Theft Crimes in Texas
Identity theft is a growing problem in America. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, 16.6 million individuals experienced at least one identity theft incident in the year 2012. In Texas, regulations against the crime of acquiring and using another person’s information for illegal use are under anti-fraud laws in Chapter 32 of the Texas Penal Code. Additional regulations are also mandated through the Identity Theft Enforcement and Protection Act.
Because identity theft is a white-collar crime that typically involves large financial sums, the penalties it involves can be pretty extensive. White-collar crimes aren’t commonly referred to as serious crime. Because it doesn’t involve causing any physical harm to other individuals, most people tend to think of it as something that’s easy to beat and overcome. However, those who are charged with identity theft or similar crimes will be surprised to learn that the consequences they’re facing are a lot more serious than expected.
Penalties for identity theft will differ based on particular circumstances of the crime. Depending on the specific situation, a person facing a charge for identity theft could end up getting incarcerated, having to pay fines, or serving probation. For example, a conviction for unauthorized acquisition or transfer of financial information could lead to up a year in jail. Meanwhile, conviction for fraudulent use or possession of identifying information could result in paying a maximum of $10,000 fines. In specific situations, the court can also decide to reduce penalties to a probation sentence.
Identity theft is a serious crime not only in Texas, but across the rest of the United States. If you are facing charges for identity theft crimes, it’s important to seek out legal counsel and gather appropriate advice immediately. You can click here to learn more about consulting with an experienced criminal defense attorney.