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Chicago Identity Theft Lawyer

Skilled Identity Theft Defense in Chicago

The 21st century has seen a dramatic increase in identity theft and similar white collar crimes. Due to the increased use of smartphones, computers, and other digital technologies, a great deal of people's personal information may be accessible to others. In some cases, vast quantities of personal data have been released through data breaches or similar issues. The personal information that becomes accessible in these situations may be used to impersonate others, access people's online accounts, engage in scams, or commit other forms of fraud. As these types of cases become more prominent, law enforcement officials are taking action to investigate and prosecute alleged offenders on charges related to identity theft.

The laws, technologies, and other issues surrounding white collar crime prosecutions can be complex, and the penalties that may apply following a criminal conviction can be severe. As such, it is important to have an experienced criminal defense attorney on your side if you have been accused of identity theft or other related offenses. With the right legal representation, you can protect yourself from serious penalties and get back on track with your life. At the Law Offices of James F. DiQuattro, we offer effective legal support in these situations, and with our track record of success defending clients against criminal charges, we can help ensure that you will be able to address identity theft charges successfully.

Identity Theft Charges in Illinois

Identity theft generally involves the use of someone's personal identifying information to commit fraud, theft, or other offenses. Personal identifying information can include someone's name, address, photograph, driver's license number, Social Security number, bank account numbers, credit card numbers, online accounts, or biometric data such as fingerprints. This information may be used to access and withdraw money from bank accounts, make credit card purchases, open new credit card accounts, take out loans, create false ID documents, or engage in other activities that could result in financial losses, damage to a person's reputation, or other forms of harm.

Under Illinois law, identity theft is usually charged as a felony. In cases where identifying information is used to obtain money, products, services, or credit, the class of felony that will apply to a case will depend on the amount that a person allegedly obtained through these activities. For example, identity theft involving losses of between $2,000 and $10,000 is a Class 2 felony, which carries a jail sentence of three to seven years.

In situations that may not involve a specific monetary figure, identity theft charges may be appropriate if personal identifying information was used to commit a felony offense, was sold or transferred to someone else with the intent of committing a felony, was used to create false identification documents, or was used to gain access to someone's private communications or uncover information about their activities or transactions. A person accused of any of these offenses will generally be charged with a Class 3 felony, which may result in a prison sentence of two to five years. A person who is accused of committing identity theft involving the personal information of at least three separate people within a 12-month period may be charged with a Class 2 felony.

The offense of aggravated identity theft may apply if the alleged victim of identity theft was over the age of 60 or was disabled or if identity theft was allegedly committed as part of the activities of an organized gang. The penalties for aggravated identity theft involving money, goods, services, or credit will usually be more severe than in other types of identity theft cases. Other types of aggravated identity theft, including those involving the information of three or more people, will result in Class 1 felony charges. A person who is convicted of a Class 1 felony may be sentenced to between four and 15 years in prison.

Contact Our Chicago Identity Theft Defense Attorney

The penalties for an identity theft conviction can be very serious. Since these cases may involve information that was accessed using the internet and transferred throughout multiple states or countries, federal charges may apply in addition to any state-level charges. If you have been accused of offenses related to identity theft or other white collar crimes, contact the Law Offices of James F. DiQuattro to learn about your options for defense. Call 312-627-9482 today to set up a free consultation.

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