Credit Card Fraud

Defending Credit Card Fraud in New Jersey

Credit Card Fraud in New Jersey is an extensive area of the law that involves many different crimes including credit card forgery, stolen goods, credit card theft, fraud, false statements and many more. I have defeated and reduced credit fraud charges and penalties for individuals throughout New Jersey for over thirty-five years. If you need an experienced criminal defense attorney to fight your credit card crime charges do not hesitate to call me for a free and confidential consultation, contact me today at 1-866-664-8118. I defend individuals throughout New Jersey including Essex County, Middlesex County, Hudson County, Monmouth County, Ocean County, and Union County including the towns of Plainfield, Linden, Clark, Garwood, Roselle, Roselle Park, Rahway, Elizabeth, New Providence, Cranford, Westfield, Mountainside, Fanwood, and Berkeley Heights.

I defend the following charges:

False Statement Made in Obtaining a Credit Card
Making a false statement in order to obtain a credit card is a fourth degree crime and if convicted an individual will serve up to 18 months in prison and pay $10,000 in fines. A person will be guilty of this crime if he:

  • Makes a false statement in writing
  • About his identity or the identity of someone else
  • Knows that its false
  • And has the intent for someone to rely on it
  • In order to obtain a credit card

The term "makes a false statement" applies whether a person makes a statement, or causes it to be made directly or indirectly. Thus it is broad and many actions will fall within the definition of "makes a false statement."

Credit Card Theft
There are six ways under New Jersey law to commit credit card theft: (1) taking a credit card without consent; (2) Receiving a lost, mislaid or mistakenly delivered credit card; (3) Selling or buying a credit card from someone other than the issuer; (4) Obtaining a credit card to secure a debt; (5) Falsely making, counterfeiting or modifying a credit card; and (6) Unauthorized signing of a credit card.

Taking or Using a Credit Card without Consent
Taking a or using a credit card without the consent of the owner is a fourth degree crime and if convicted an individual will serve up to 18 months in prison and pay $10,000 in fines. A person is guilty of this crime if he:

  • Takes or obtains a credit card from another person without consent; OR
  • Receives a credit card knowing that it is stolen or taken without consent; AND
  • With the intent to use it or sell or give it to another

Consent that is obtained by extortion, misappropriation, deception, fraud, or false pretense is considered invalid. When a person has two or more credit cards in his possession in the name of two or more persons (other than himself) the law is presumed violated.

Receiving a Credit Card that is Lost, Mislaid or Delivered by Mistake
Receiving a lost or mislaid credit card with intent to use it is a fourth degree crime and if convicted an individual will serve up to 18 months in prison and pay $10,000 in fines. A person will be guilty of this crime if he:

  • Receives a credit card that he knows is lost, mislaid or delivered by mistake; AND
  • Retains possession with intent to use it; OR
  • Gives it to another unauthorized person to use it

Selling or Buying Credit Cards
It is a fourth degree crime for a person other than the issuer (the business authorized to issue the credit card) to buy or sell credit cards. A conviction of this crime carries penalties of up to 18 months in prison and $10,000 in fines.

Obtaining a Credit Card to Secure a Debt
A person who, with intent to defraud the issuer (the business authorized to issue the credit card), a person or organization providing money, goods, services or anything else of value, or any other person, obtains a credit card as security for a debt is guilty of a crime of the fourth degree. A conviction of this crime carries penalties of up to 18 months in prison and $10,000 in fines.

Falsely Making, Counterfeiting or Altering a Credit Card
Falsely making, counterfeiting or altering a credit card is a third degree crime and if convicted an individual will serve 3 to 5 years in prison and be heavily fined. A person will be guilty of this crime if he:

  • Falsely counterfeited or tampered with a credit card; AND
  • Had the intent to use the false card to defraud the issuer or someone who provides anything of value.

A person other than the issuer (business that issues the credit card), who possesses two or more credit cards which are falsely made or falsely embossed is presumed to have violated this paragraph. Making a false credit card includes altering a card that is validly issued. Falsely embossing a credit card means completing the card for use by adding anything required for use except for the signature.

Falsely signed
A person who represents to be a card holder by falsely signing a credit card is guilty of a fourth degree crime and if convicted will serve up to 18 months in prison and pay $10,000 in fines.
A person is guilty of this crime if he, with intent to defraud:

  • Signs a credit card; AND
  • Is someone other than the cardholder or person authorized by the cardholder

A person who possesses two or more credit cards which are so signed is presumed to have violated this paragraph.

Fraudulent Use of Credit Cards
Fraudulent use of credit cards is the third category under which credit card fraud crimes are organized in New Jersey. There are five ways to commit fraudulent use of credit cards: (1) Using a credit card knowing it was revoked, forged, or expired; (2) Fraud committed by the provider of money, goods, or services; (3) Intent to complete a credit card without consent; (4) Receipt of anything of value as result of credit card fraud; and (5) Fraudulent use of a credit card.

Using a Credit Card Knowing it was Revoked, Forged or Expired
This is a third degree crime which carries 3 to 5 years in prison if convicted. In order to be convicted of this crime, the individual must intend to defraud

  • Someone providing goods or services, or the issuer
  • The card must actually be used to defraud
  • The card must be forged, expired or revoked; and
  • The accused must be aware that the card has this defect. If the accused did not have knowledge of the defect, he cannot be convicted of the crime.

While lack of knowledge of the defect is a defense, knowledge of revocation is presumed
4 days after notice has been mailed to the cardholder.

Fraud Committed by the Provider of Money Goods or Services
There are two ways that this law can be violated. The first is where the storeowner accepts the credit card from the cardholder with the intent to defraud the issuer (the business which issued the card), and allows the individual to pay for anything of value with a card that he knows is forged, expired or revoked. This is a third degree crime which carries 3 to 5 years in prison. The second way is when the storeowner charges the card but does not furnish what he promises in writing to furnish. This is a fourth degree crime which carries up to 18 months in prison and $10,000 in fines.

Incomplete credit cards; intent to complete without consent
This is third degree crime which carries 3 to 5 years in prison on conviction. A person is guilty of this crime if he:

  • Is someone other than the cardholder; AND
  • Possesses two or more incomplete cards; AND
  • Has the intent to complete them without consent of issuer; OR
  • Acts with knowledge of a device used to produce a false credit card.

Receipt of Anything of Value As Result of Credit Card Fraud
A person who received anything of value knowing or believing that is was obtained by credit card fraud or credit card theft is guilty of a fourth degree crime which carries up to 18 months in prison on conviction and $10,000 in fines.

Fraudulent use of credit cards.
This is a third degree crime which carries 3 to 5 years in prison if an individual is convicted. Under this law a person is guilty if they knowingly:

  • use any counterfeit, altered, forged, lost, stolen or fraudulently obtained credit card to obtain anything else of value; or
  • Acts with unlawful or fraudulent intent to furnish, acquire, or use any actual or fictitious credit card or other information pertaining to a credit card account in any form is guilty.

Credit Card Fraud Attorney
Still have questions? Credit card fraud is an extremely lengthy topic in New Jersey with many little nuances. If you would like to discuss your charge or even a potential situation, I would be happy to speak with you during a free and confidential consultation at 1-866-664-8118.

I have been successfully defending credit card fraud charges in New Jersey for over 35 years and I obtain extremely favorable outcomes in the vast majority of my cases. I defend individuals throughout New Jersey including Essex County, Middlesex County, Hudson County, Monmouth County, Ocean County, and Union County including the towns of Plainfield, Linden, Clark, Garwood, Roselle, Roselle Park, Rahway, Elizabeth, New Providence, Cranford, Westfield, Mountainside, Fanwood, and Berkeley Heights.