Florida Statutes Section 817.568 contains various crimes that qualify as identity theft. It is the use or possession of, with intent to fraudulently use, someone’s personal identity information without consent from the owner. Fraudulent use of personal identification information is a third degree felony punishable by up to 5 years in prison and up to 5,000.00 in fines. Of course, if the value of the item is great than $5,000.00 and the number of persons defrauded exceeds 10, then it is a second degree felony. If 20 or more individuals are defrauded, then it is classified as a first degree felony punishable by up to 30 years in prison and a fine of up to $50,000.00.
Another charge affiliated with identify theft is obtaining property by false personation. It is anyone who falsely presents himself or herself as another person, or who impersonates another person to fraudulently obtain property. This is considered a crime of larceny depending on the value of property taken (F.S.S. 517.02).
Use of personal identification information to harass someone is a first degree misdemeanor punishable by to 12 months in jail and up to $1,000.00 in fines. Use of minor’s personal identification information is a second degree felony (817.568(6). Use of deceased’s personal identification information is a third degree felony but can be increased depending on the number of individuals defrauded and the value of the property obtained. Counterfeit or fictitious personal identification information is the use of or possession of false identification with intent to commit fraud, which is a third degree felony and can be enhanced based on the value of property obtained (F.S.S. 817.568(a)).
The main defenses for these charges are lack of unlawful purpose and fraudulent intent. If you are facing fraud charges, please contact Stewart Law Firm today for your free consultation.