Skip to Content
When Your Future is On the Line, We're Here to Help
Ventura Credit Card And Identity Theft Attorney

Ventura Credit Card and Identity Theft Attorney

In Ventura County, making purchases with someone else’s credit card without permission is a serious offense that can lead to fines, jail time, and the loss of your own rights to use credit cards or bank accounts in the future. Being accused of credit card and/or identity theft can ruin your reputation and make it difficult to ever get another credit card or loan in the future.

Read more below to learn:

  • Credit Card and Identity Theft Laws
  • What the Court Has To Prove In Order To Get A Conviction
  • Ways to Defend Against Credit Card and Identity Theft Charges
  • Credit Card and Identity Theft Penalties
  • Real-Life Example for Credit Card and Identity Theft Arrests and Charges
  • How To Find Out If You Have Been A Victim of Identity Theft
  • Contacting a Credit Card and Identity Theft Lawyer For Immediate Help

Credit Card and Identity Theft Laws

According to California law, credit card theft is any unlawful use of a credit card. It includes buying goods or services with a stolen credit card, using someone else’s credit card without authorization, and improperly obtaining a new credit card account. In other words, it’s used when an individual has misused another person’s credit or debit card in any way. If convicted, an individual can face imprisonment and hefty fines.

Identity theft occurs when an individual uses another person’s identity unlawfully by opening accounts that he or she isn’t entitled to have opened or by taking out loans that he or she wasn’t authorized for; in some cases, they may also open utility accounts and even commit tax fraud!

According to the Department of Justice website:

“Legislation created a new offense of identity theft, which prohibits “knowingly transfer[ring] or us[ing], without lawful authority, a means of identification of another person with the intent to commit, or to aid or abet, any unlawful activity that constitutes a violation of Federal law, or that constitutes a felony under any applicable State or local law.” 18 U.S.C. § 1028(a)(7). This offense, in most circumstances, carries a maximum term of 15 years’ imprisonment, a fine, and criminal forfeiture of any personal property used or intended to be used to commit the offense.  Schemes to commit identity theft or fraud may also involve violations of other statutes such as identification fraud (18 U.S.C. § 1028), credit card fraud (18 U.S.C. § 1029), computer fraud (18 U.S.C. § 1030), mail fraud (18 U.S.C. § 1341), wire fraud (18 U.S.C. § 1343), or financial institution fraud (18 U.S.C. § 1344). Each of these federal offenses are felonies that carry substantial penalties –¬ in some cases, as high as 30 years’ imprisonment, fines, and criminal forfeiture.”

What Does the Court Have To Prove In Order To Get A Conviction?

A credit card theft defense attorney will work with you on mitigating evidence. If there are no cameras in sight, for example, it could be hard for prosecutors to prove that you knew you were taking someone else’s credit card. While you can get into trouble for simply possessing a stolen credit card, many cases involve either fraudulent use or specific identification documents. And when someone is accused of having another person’s ID, one thing your attorney will likely look at is what documentation their client has in their possession; being found with multiple addresses and names can raise questions about whether or not those are fictitious identities.

The court needs to prove:

  1. There was an unlawful purpose
  2. There was a willful act and/or
  3. There was an intent to defraud

For more information on how to defend against a possible credit card and identity theft conviction, contact an experienced attorney immediately.

Ways to Defend Against Credit Card and Identity Theft Charges

As per the information provided in the previous section “What does the court have to prove in order to get a conviction,” the following information is relative to its defense:

Legal defense to 530.5 PC:

Three legal defenses to defeating an identity theft charge are 1) no unlawful purpose, 2) no willful act and 3) no intent to defraud.

For more specific information on this, please contact Sanford Horowitz immediately.

Credit Card and Identity Theft Penalties

Penalties for credit card theft and identity theft vary. They can include fines, probation, restitution, community service, prison time and more. For example, someone charged with identity theft might be required to reimburse their victim for any money lost due to their theft. They might also have to complete a consumer education program.

Not all penalties are financial in nature; a judge may require an individual accused of credit card theft or identity theft to perform community service or stay away from places that may allow them access to personal information. The specific penalties you face depend on how serious your offense is and how long you’ve been committing these crimes.

Penalties for these violations may also fall under a “wobbler” offense – meaning it can be charged either as a misdemeanor or felony. It is important to follow up with an attorney now if you are in this situation.

Real-Life Example for Credit Card and Identity Theft Arrests and Charges

Here are a few examples of Credit Card and Identity Theft:

Providing the clerk your older brother’s driver’s license at a Liquor Store in Isla Vista to purchase alcohol, then later getting in a car accident. This becomes double damage.

Grabbing a credit card left behind in the billfold when you are waitressing at the restaurant, and then using it when you’re done with your shift to run up gas at the local station.

Personating someone else either through social media or documents, to gain an advantage.

For Victims of Identity and Credit Card Theft:

How To Find Out If You Have Been A Victim of Identity Theft

You’ve probably heard stories of identity theft, but you may not have considered that you are also at risk of this crime—especially if you live in Ventura, California.

Continue Reading Read Less

The Right Firm Makes a Difference

Why Clients Choose Us
  • Aggressive & Compassionate Representation
    You are our number one priority in and out of the courtroom.
  • Former Prosecutor on Your Team

    Work with an experienced former prosecutor who knows both sides.

  • Providing Service in Spanish
    Criminal defense provided by a Spanish-speaking team.
  • Offering 100% Free Consults
    Talk through all of your legal options during a free consultation.

What Clients Are Saying

  • A former prosecutor, Sandy is a skilled litigator who understands both sides of the criminal justice system, which is a tremendous asset. While we hope never to be in a similar situation again, we can recommend Sandy without hesitation.
    - Ann S.
  • A great relief and reassurance to anyone potentially facing criminal charges.
    - S.A.
  • To say that Horowitz is a great lawyer is an understatement. I would highly recommend him to anyone dealing with a legal issue.
    - Haley S.
  • In addition to being highly intelligent and professional, he is incredibly empathetic and kind, which helps when dealing with life’s unpleasant situations.
    - Eli S.