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Scheme to Defraud in Florida



Scheme to Defraud in Florida Explained

When navigating the complexities of Scheme to Defraud charges in Florida, understanding the legal definitions and implications is crucial. This crime, as outlined under Florida Statute 817.034, involves a systematic, ongoing course of conduct aimed at defrauding one or more persons through deceitful means. It’s a broad category that encompasses two main types: Organized Fraud and Communications Fraud.

Organized Fraud is the more severe of the two, not requiring mail, telephonic, or electronic communications as part of the fraudulent scheme. On the other hand, Communications Fraud involves the use of these communication methods to further the deceitful intent. The distinction between these two forms is critical for legal defense strategies, as penalties can vary significantly based on the nature and outcome of the fraudulent activities.

What exactly constitutes a Scheme to Defraud in Florida? It’s any systematic and ongoing effort to deceive one or more individuals, intending to obtain property or assets through fraudulent pretenses, representations, or promises.

Understanding these nuances is the first step in mounting a successful defense against fraud charges. At Leppard Law: Fraud Defense Attorneys, we specialize in dissecting the specifics of each case, ensuring our clients receive a defense strategy tailored to the unique circumstances of their situation.

The penalties for Scheme to Defraud in Florida hinge on the value of the property obtained and whether the act is classified as Organized Fraud or Communications Fraud. Penalties can range from hefty fines to significant prison time, underscoring the importance of a strong legal defense. For more insights into potential defenses and legal strategies, explore our resources on defense of crimes involving bitcoin and cryptocurrency and extortion in Florida.

Leppard Law: Fraud Defense Attorneys

At Leppard Law: Fraud Defense Attorneys, we understand the fear and uncertainty that come with facing fraud charges. Our team, led by tech-savvy attorney Joel Leppard, leverages cutting-edge technology to enhance our legal services, ensuring efficient, responsive support for our clients. If you or a loved one is facing Scheme to Defraud charges, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at 407-476-4111 for a free consultation. Let us put our expertise and dedication to work for you.

Penalties for Scheme to Defraud in Florida

When it comes to understanding the legal consequences of engaging in a scheme to defraud in Florida, the stakes are high. The penalties vary significantly based on the value of the property obtained and whether the offense is classified as Organized Fraud or Communications Fraud. At Leppard Law, we navigate these complex legal waters, offering strategic defense to those accused of these serious offenses.

Penalties for Scheme to Defraud in Florida

Organized Fraud Penalties

The severity of penalties for Organized Fraud in Florida is directly tied to the aggregate value of the property fraudulently obtained. Here’s a breakdown:

  • Less than $20,000: Classified as a Third Degree Felony, this level of Organized Fraud can result in up to 5 years in prison, 5 years of probation, and fines up to $5,000.
  • $20,000 to less than $50,000: This Second Degree Felony could lead to up to 15 years in prison, 15 years of probation, and fines up to $10,000.
  • $50,000 or more: As a First Degree Felony, the consequences include up to 30 years in prison, 30 years of probation, and fines up to $10,000.

Given the gravity of these penalties, it’s crucial to have an experienced Orlando Fraud Crimes Defense Lawyer by your side. The right legal team can mean the difference between a life-altering felony conviction and a more favorable outcome.

Understanding the nuances of Florida’s fraud penalties is essential. Whether facing charges of Organized or Communications Fraud, the impact on your life can be profound. Early legal intervention is key to navigating these challenges.

In addition to prison time and fines, a conviction for a scheme to defraud can have lasting repercussions on your personal and professional life. It can affect your ability to find employment, secure housing, and more. That’s why it’s imperative to seek legal counsel as soon as possible.

At Leppard Law, we pride ourselves on our comprehensive understanding of Florida’s fraud laws and our ability to defend our clients vigorously. If you or a loved one is facing charges related to a scheme to defraud, don’t wait to seek help. Contact us today at 407-476-4111 for a consultation. Our team is ready to fight for your rights and work towards the best possible outcome in your case.

For more information on how we can assist with other fraud-related charges, explore our resources on insurance fraud defense, credit card fraud, and organized fraud. At Leppard Law, we’re not just your attorneys; we’re your allies in the fight for justice.

Examples of Scheme to Defraud in Florida

Understanding what constitutes a scheme to defraud in Florida can often seem like navigating a complex legal maze. To shed light on this intricate topic, let’s explore some hypothetical scenarios that underscore the breadth of activities considered fraudulent under Florida law. These examples are designed to provide clarity on how seemingly diverse actions can fall under the umbrella of fraud.

Communications Fraud Scenarios

Communications Fraud, as defined under Florida law, involves the use of mail, telephonic, or electronic communication to execute a scheme to defraud. Here are some illustrative examples:

  • Email Phishing: John sends out thousands of emails impersonating a legitimate bank, asking recipients to update their banking information. This act, intended to unlawly access financial accounts, constitutes Communications Fraud.
  • Telemarketing Scams: Sarah operates a call center that solicits funds for a fake charity, misleading donors about the nature of their contributions. This scenario is a classic case of Communications Fraud.
  • Social Media Scams: Alex uses social media to promote investment opportunities in a non-existent startup, promising high returns. Investors who transfer money based on Alex’s false promises are victims of Communications Fraud.

These scenarios highlight the critical role of communication in furthering fraudulent schemes. Whether it’s through email, phone calls, or social media, the essence of Communications Fraud lies in the intent to deceive and the use of communication technology as a tool for deception.

Communications Fraud can take many forms, but at its core, it involves using any means of communication to intentionally deceive others for financial gain. It’s a serious offense that carries significant penalties.

At Leppard Law: Fraud Defense Attorneys, we understand the complexities of fraud-related charges and the nuances that distinguish different types of fraud. Our experience in handling credit card fraud, insurance fraud, and organized fraud cases equips us with the expertise necessary to defend individuals accused of Communications Fraud effectively.

If you find yourself entangled in a fraud accusation, it’s imperative to seek legal counsel promptly. The consequences of a fraud conviction extend beyond legal penalties; they can tarnish your reputation, impact your employment opportunities, and have long-lasting effects on your personal and professional life. Contact Leppard Law today at 407-476-4111 for a consultation. Our dedicated team is ready to provide the vigorous defense you deserve, aiming to achieve the best possible outcome for your case.


Defenses to Scheme to Defraud Charges

When facing charges of Scheme to Defraud in Florida, it’s crucial to understand the defenses available to you. The legal landscape can be daunting, but with the right approach and understanding, navigating these charges becomes more manageable. Let’s delve into the legal defenses that could potentially turn the tide in your favor.

Intent to Defraud and Double Jeopardy

At the heart of any fraud charge, including Scheme to Defraud, lies the requirement for the prosecution to prove intent. Intent is a crucial element that distinguishes an unfortunate misunderstanding from a deliberate act of fraud. Similarly, the principle of double jeopardy provides a safeguard against being tried or punished more than once for the same offense. These two defenses form the cornerstone of the legal strategies employed in defending against Scheme to Defraud charges.

Understanding Intent: Intent to defraud is a critical element that the prosecution must establish beyond a reasonable doubt. This involves proving that the accused had a clear intention to deceive or cheat, leading to financial gain or causing financial loss to another. The absence of intent can significantly weaken the prosecution’s case, making it a powerful defense.

Double Jeopardy Explained: The constitutional protection against double jeopardy means that once a person has been acquitted or convicted of a particular offense, they cannot be tried again for the same offense. This principle ensures fairness and prevents the abuse of the legal system.

Did you know? The absence of intent to defraud is a viable defense against Scheme to Defraud charges. It challenges the prosecution’s claim by asserting that any misrepresentation was not made with fraudulent intent.

Other defenses may include challenging the allegations of falsehood, demonstrating a lack of knowledge of the fraudulent scheme, or proving that the actions were not part of a systematic, ongoing course of conduct as required by Florida law. Each case is unique, and the applicability of these defenses varies based on the specific circumstances.

At Leppard Law: Fraud Defense Attorneys, our experienced team is adept at navigating the complexities of fraud charges. We understand the nuances of fraudulent use of credit cards, insurance fraud defense, and health care fraud, among others. Our approach is tailored to the unique aspects of each case, ensuring that our clients receive the most effective defense possible.

If you’re facing charges related to a Scheme to Defraud in Florida, time is of the essence. Contact Leppard Law today at 407-476-4111 to schedule a consultation. Our dedicated team will work tirelessly to protect your rights and pursue the best possible outcome for your case. Remember, you don’t have to navigate this challenging time alone. Let us be your guide and advocate in the legal system.

Defending Against Scheme to Defraud Charges


Infographic depicting the words Scheme to Defraud in Florida


Frequently Asked Questions About Scheme to Defraud in Florida

What constitutes a Scheme to Defraud in Florida?

A Scheme to Defraud in Florida is defined as engaging in a systematic, ongoing course of conduct with the intent to defraud or obtain property from one or more persons by false or fraudulent pretenses, representations, promises, or willful misrepresentations of a future act.

How is Organized Fraud different from Communications Fraud in Florida?

Organized Fraud and Communications Fraud are distinguished primarily by the method of execution and the nature of the fraudulent activity. Organized Fraud involves actually obtaining property through a scheme to defraud, without the necessity of using mail, telephonic, or electronic communications. Communications Fraud, on the other hand, specifically involves fraudulent communications via mail, telephone, or electronic means to obtain property.

What are the penalties for Scheme to Defraud charges in Florida?

Penalties for Scheme to Defraud charges in Florida vary based on the value of the property obtained and whether the crime is classified as Organized Fraud or Communications Fraud. Penalties range from up to 30 years in prison for Organized Fraud of $50,000 or more, to up to 5 years in prison for Communications Fraud of $300 or more.

Can charges of Scheme to Defraud in Florida be defended?

Yes, there are several defenses available to those charged with Scheme to Defraud in Florida, including challenging the proof of intent to defraud, demonstrating a lack of knowledge of the fraudulent scheme, or proving that the actions did not constitute a systematic, ongoing course of conduct. Each defense strategy depends on the specific facts of the case.

Exploring the full spectrum of legal services we offer in Florida, here’s a closer look at additional practice areas related to Scheme to Defraud charges.

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List of Top-Rated Scheme to Defraud in Florida Attorneys Serving Florida

Choosing the right legal representation is critical in Scheme to Defraud cases. Our dedicated team ensures you’re well-informed and supported throughout every stage of your case.

  • John Vallillo: Known for his meticulous attention to detail, John Vallillo provides personalized and effective legal representation, ensuring the best possible outcome for your case.
  • Joe Easton: Specializing in challenging evidence and securing favorable outcomes, Joe Easton’s commitment to justice is evident in his approach to each case.
  • Joel Leppard: With a strategic mindset and skilled negotiation techniques, Joel Leppard has achieved numerous case dismissals and reduced charges, making him a trusted name in legal defense.

Discover What Our Clients Are Saying

Our dedication to excellence in fraud defense is evident in every case we undertake. The positive feedback from our clients is a testament to the hard work and dedication we consistently deliver.



Infographic depicting the words Scheme to Defraud in Florida

Take the First Step Towards Your Defense Today

Being accused of a Scheme to Defraud in Florida can be a daunting experience, with the potential to impact every aspect of your life. But you don’t have to face it alone. At Leppard Law: Fraud Defense Attorneys, we understand the intricacies of Florida’s legal system and are committed to providing you with the robust defense you deserve.

Our team, led by Joel Leppard, a tech-savvy attorney with a personal touch, leverages cutting-edge technology alongside legal expertise to ensure your case is handled efficiently and effectively. With a collective experience of over 60 years, our attorneys have been recognized for their trial advocacy, skillful negotiations, and dedication to achieving the best outcomes for our clients.

But more than our accolades, what sets us apart is our commitment to treating our clients like family. We believe in building personal relationships and ensuring that you’re not just another case number. Our approach is client-centered, focusing on clear, consistent communication and understanding your unique situation.

Here are just a few reasons why choosing Leppard Law can make all the difference in your Scheme to Defraud case:

  • Your Voice, Our Mission: We prioritize clear communication and ensure you’re informed every step of the way.
  • Strength in Numbers, Dedication at Heart: Our robust legal team brings unparalleled commitment and expertise to your defense.
  • Tech-Savvy Defense with a Personal Touch: Utilizing the latest technology for a more efficient and effective defense strategy.
  • From Their Bench to Your Defense: Leveraging our insider knowledge as former prosecutors to your advantage.

Don’t let a Scheme to Defraud charge define your future. Contact Leppard Law: Fraud Defense Attorneys today at 407-476-4111 to schedule your free consultation. Let us show you what it means to have an attorney who fights for you as passionately as they would for their own family. Experience the difference of having a dedicated, experienced team by your side.

“Your case is our mission. Let us provide the support and legal expertise you deserve.”

Legally Reviewed by Joe Easton

Expert Attorney

Legally reviewed by Joe Easton and the content team, this article reflects the firm’s 60 years of combined criminal defense expertise. Joe Easton, with his extensive experience and strategic prowess in DUI and criminal defense, offers more than just legal representation; he brings a commitment to turning legal challenges into triumphs. His approach, combining tenacity in the courtroom with personalized client care, ensures your case is not just defended but championed with dedication and expertise.

Learn More About Joe Easton