Take Action Now If the Cops Are Investigating You for Check Fraud?
Using a check to obtain money in an illegal way may be prosecuted as check fraud. This can include activities like writing checks with insufficient funds or forging a check. The penalties for check fraud can range from fines and mandatory restitution to extended jail sentences.
The penalties for check offenses increase sharply based on the amount of money that was stolen under fraudulent pretenses. Writing a bad check for less than $100 may result in a fine but writing one for several thousand dollars could lead to jail time.
What to Do If You’re Being Investigated?
If someone suspects that the police have placed them under investigation for writing bad checks, they may feel confused and anxious. It can be difficult to decide what to do in this kind of situation.
In order to keep from making any mistakes, it’s important to stick to a plan when facing criminal charges. Some key steps to follow:
- Don’t panic
- Hire a lawyer as soon as possible
- Don’t discuss the case with anyone other than a lawyer
- Don’t talk to the police without a lawyer present
Legal Representation Is Key
Fear and anxiety are common reactions to being the target of a police investigation. Although these feelings are normal, it’s important to stay calm. Panic can lead to confused thinking and poor decision making.
Hiring a good lawyer is the most important step. A lawyer can calm a person’s anxieties and help to create a plan of action for outlining a criminal defense. A lawyer can also communicate with law enforcement and the court to find out about the status of warrants and other important information.
In the event of a court appearance, a lawyer can appear for the defendant and try to arrange a plea bargain for a lighter sentence. For example, a lawyer may be able to exchange a guilty plea on the part of a defendant in return for a dropped or reduced jail term.
Watch What You Say
It is also extremely important to avoid talking to anyone about the investigation. Even friends and family are off-limits for these kinds of conversations. Even if they mean well, friends and family may accidentally leak important information to law enforcement. Lawyers have a professional obligation to keep all of their clients’ information private and confidential.
When talking to the police, it is important to be calm and courteous. Anyone speaking to the police should comply and not resist or argue when asked to show ID and provide identifying information. If the police request any information other than basic questions, the proper response is: “I can’t discuss that without my lawyer present.”
Hire a Check Fraud Attorney
There are many instances of innocent people being arrested every year. If you have been arrested for check fraud, don’t talk to the police. This will only incriminate you. The best plan of attack is to ask to speak with James Alston so you can schedule a free legal consultation session.