INTERNET CRIMES

DUPAGE, KANE, AND COOK COUNTY CRIMINAL DEFENSE LAWYER

Internet crimes are becoming more prevalent, and law enforcement is developing more sophisticated methods of catching and charging offenders. If you were accused of committing an Internet or electronic crime, you could face heavy fines and prison time. Being charged as a criminal carries a stigma with it that can be very damaging to your future, and may cause you to miss out on advancements in your career and other promising opportunities. Don’t allow this to happen!

Call a DuPage County criminal defense attorney from Martin & Kent, L.L.C., to defend you and help save your reputation. We offer free, initial consultations!

TYPES OF ELECTRONIC CRIMES

Although it can be difficult to distinguish, officials have been working diligently to stay current with the fast-changing trends. They are able to use forensics to analyze computers and other digital evidence. This means individuals accused of electronic crimes are now up against harsh prosecution. Now more than ever you need a lawyer who understands the changes in electronic crimes and how to defend your rights.

The most common types of electronic crimes include:

  • Cyber fraud
  • Identity theft
  • Credit card theft
  • Credit card fraud
  • Computer hacking or tampering
  • Hate crimes
  • Distributing viruses or malware
  • Internet scams
  • Phishing
  • Electronic vandalism
  • Distributing illegal or offensive material

Having more than 42 years of combined experience in criminal defense, our firm has the experience necessary to defend against your charges. We have a thorough knowledge of the law and can use our experience as former prosecutors to your advantage. This allows us to formulate defense strategies that can help clear your name from any involvement in the crime.

Possible Penalties for Illinois Internet Crimes

Because internet crimes vary so widely in nature and severity, the possible consequences you face will depend on the specific allegations against you. The best way to know your potential consequences is to have a skilled internet crime defense lawyer evaluate your case. However, the following are some examples of penalties in certain internet crime cases.

Cyber fraud – Internet fraud schemes are generally intended to deprive others of money, property, or information without permission. Therefore, this type of offense is penalized much like theft offenses, and the charges and consequences will largely depend on the amount of money or property obtained or attempted to be obtained by the fraud.

  • Up to $1,000 – Class 4 felony, one to three years of imprisonment
  • $1,000 to $50,000 – Class 3 felony, two to five years of imprisonment
  • More than $50,000 – Class 2 felony, three to seven years of imprisonment

You can also be subject to property forfeiture if authorities believe any assets or property you have were the product of the fraud. The court can order you to pay restitution, impose fines and court costs, and more.

Computer tampering – There are also different levels of computer tampering charges and penalties, depending on the specific acts claimed by the prosecutor.

  • Accessing a network or computer without permission – Class B misdemeanor
  • Falsifying routing information to falsify an email transmission – Class B misdemeanor
  • Accessing a network or computer without permission to obtain services or data – Class 4 felony
  • Accessing a network or computer and then destroying or altering programs or data – Class 4 felony for a first offense, Class 3 felony for subsequent offenses
  • Inserting a program that will destroy or alter another program, falsify email transmission, or otherwise cause a loss to the computer users – Class 4 felony for a first offense, Class 3 felony for subsequent offenses
  • Any form of computer tampering that affects the services of public utilities or government agencies – Class 3 felony
  • Any form of computer tampering that causes the probability of harm or death of another person – Class 2 felony

Hate Crimes – Illinois recently expanded its hate crime laws to allow cyberstalking, online intimidation, and transmitting obscene messages to be prosecuted as hate crimes when appropriate.

  • First offense – Class 3 felony
  • Subsequent offenses – Class 2 felony
  • Offenders can also face fines and the law allows hate crime victims to seek civil damages from the offender.

These are only some examples of the possible penalties for different internet crimes. The right defense attorney can help to lessen the penalties you face in many ways. Some defense tactics include:

  • Challenging the prosecutor’s ability to prove all elements of the offense
  • Presenting mitigating factors and/or challenging aggravating factors
  • Presenting any and all possible legal defenses
  • Negotiating a plea agreement for reduced charges or a lesser sentence
  • Arguing for a term of probation in lieu of prison time

Just because you are behind a computer screen does not mean you are immune from criminal charges and convictions of internet offenses. Call our office as soon as you can if you are under investigation or have been arrested.

WHY SHOULD YOU HIRE OUR FIRM?

Colleagues and state officials have recognized us as one of the top criminal defense firms in Illinois. Our vast experience in many areas of criminal law helps us maintain our pace as one of the top firms in the state. Many of our cases have ended in acquittals, which means we are committed to getting our clients the best possible results. When you are ready to speak with us about your electronic crime case, you can do so during your free consultation.

We are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Contact us at (630) 474-8000 as soon as possible when you’re ready to discuss your case!