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Fraud: Identity Theft Charges in Florida


Criminal statutes for the crime of identity theft exist both in state and federal court. Identity theft takes a variety of forms and occurs when an individual illegally obtains another person's personal information to engage in fraud and theft. Identity theft offenses generally involve the unauthorized use the following to apply for credit cards, open bank accounts and obtain bank and car loans, and more:
  • Names
  • Addresses
  • Social security numbers
  • Birth certificates
  • Passports
  • Driver's licenses
What Are the Penalties for Identity Theft? Individuals accused with committing identity theft under Florida law can be charged with criminal use of personal identification information. Personal identification information is defined as any name or number that may be used, alone or in conjunction with other information to identify a particular person. Examples include:
  • Names
  • Mail addresses
  • E-mail addresses
  • Phone numbers
  • Social security numbers
  • Driver's license numbers
  • State identification information
  • Passport information
  • Tax identification numbers
  • Credit or debit card account numbers
  • Any other type of personal information
Anyone found to be in violation of the Florida statute is facing a third degree felony punishable up to five years in prison. The offense can be elevated to a second degree felony if the loss exceeds $5,000 or there are between 10 and 20 victims. If the loss amount exceeds $50,000 or there are between 20 and 30 victims, a 5 year minimum mandatory sentence will apply. If the loss amount exceeds $100,000 or there are more than 30 victims, a 10 year minimum mandatory sentence will attach. Identity Theft As a Federal Offense Identity theft can be charged in federal court. In 1998, the federal legislature passed the Identity Theft and Assumption Deterrence Act. The new law strengthened the criminal laws against identity theft. Specifically, the act made it a crimes to intentionally and knowingly transfer or use, without lawful authority, identification information of another person with the intent to commit a criminal act.

The negative economic impact and potential to compromise national security has led the federal legislature to pass a new statute which allow federal prosecutors to file the charge of aggravated identity theft. The new statute carries a two year minimum mandatory sentence which will run concurrently with the sentence imposed for the underlying offenses.
Get in Touch with a Criminal Lawyer Immediately Identity theft often accompanies other charges on an indictment or information such as credit card fraud, mortgage fraud, Medicare fraud and theft. The Miami identity theft criminal lawyers at DMT have defended dozens of identity theft cases and achieved outstanding results for our clients. With the serious consequences that can attach in Miami identity theft cases, it is imperative to contact the criminal defense team at DMT to protect your rights.

Anyone being investigated for identity theft will inevitably be contacted by state or federal law enforcement authorities. Investigators are not trying to help you, but rather build a case against you. Do not give law enforcement consent to search your home or car. Any evidence they obtain will be used against you in a criminal prosecution. Similarly, any statements a person provides to the investigators will used to build the case. Call the experienced identity theft criminal attorneys at DMT to get sound legal advice before speaking to anyone.

If you are under investigation for, or have been arrested and charged with identity fraud, contact the Miami criminal lawyers at DMT. An experienced criminal attorney is available every day of the year, 24 hours a day to speak with you regarding your situation. You can call our office or reach us by completing the form on our contact page or by sending an e-mail.