Identity theft is a broad category of the law that can include everything from stealing a person’s identity to taking personal information and even hacking someone’s social media account.
The consequences of identity theft are just as broad as the category. The punishment depends not only on the type of data stolen but how that data was used. But, unlike other crimes, being convicted of identity theft could be extremely costly.
Criminal Charges in the State of Florida
The penalties for identity theft can vary and a few factors will determine the severity of your punishment, including:
• How many people you victimized;
• The number of damages you caused;
• If you have been arrested or convicted of identity theft before.
In some cases, you could spend only one year in prison, while in others you could spend up to 10 years in prison or 15 years if you’re a repeat offender.
You Have to Pay Restitution, Too
Spending time in jail and paying court fines is not the only punishment you will face. You may also have to pay restitution to your identity theft victims. If that victim chooses to sue you for personal damages, then a guilty conviction could make it easier for that victim to win their civil lawsuit—and you could pay back more than just what you stole.
Elder and Dependent Adult Fraud Carries Harsher Punishments
If you were arrested for identity theft involving the elderly or dependent adults, then be prepared for harsher penalties. The state of Florida does not take identity theft crimes against elderly individuals lightly, and you could be charged for a higher class of crime for stealing just one identity.
Contact a Miami Criminal Defense Attorney if You’ve Been Arrested for Identity Theft
Because of the various consequences for identity theft, you cannot risk going at your defense alone. It is easy to spend over a decade in prison for minor identity theft acts. Worse, if you are innocent, you could spend 10 to 15 years of your life in prison for something you didn’t do.
Consult an experienced criminal defense attorney in Miami who can fight for your rights and the best possible outcome. The Law Offices of Paul J. Donnelly are experienced in white collar crimes and can assist you with your case. Don’t risk going to prison—get the defense you deserve. Call now for a free consultation regarding your case.