Lead Counsel independently verifies Counterfeit Money attorneys in Killen by conferring with Alabama bar associations and conducting annual reviews to confirm that an attorney practices in their advertised practice areas and possesses a valid bar license for the appropriate jurisdictions.
There are a variety of crimes related to counterfeit money from the creation of counterfeit money to the laundering of fake money and spending it.
Counterfeiting is a serious federal offense, one which courts do not take lightly. Using machines, dyes and other techniques to reproduce legal currency is considered a federal felony, and the distribution, obfuscation (laundering) of said fake currency is also a felony. Doing trade with counterfeit currency in low denominations may be considered somewhat less serious, but determined in a court of law.
Charges related to counterfeit money can be pursued at either the state or federal level. At the federal level, knowingly dealing in counterfeit currency can be a felony resulting in up to 20 years imprisonment, as well as a fine, if you are found guilty of the offense.
State-level laws differ on the subject. If a particular sum of goods or services being sought exceeds a monetary threshold (often ranging from $250 to $1,000), the charges of counterfeiting or forgery are escalated to felony charges. If the sum is lower than the state-dictated threshold, misdemeanor charges may result, at least in jurisdictions that offer this legal avenue.
Intent is a major element that must be proven to charge someone for using counterfeit money.
If you unknowingly use counterfeit money, it is likely you will have a strong defense if a case comes to trial. In most instances, people pass counterfeit bills without prior knowledge of, or intent, to defraud the recipient. Given that the standard of proof in a criminal trial is quite high — prosecutors must prove, beyond any reasonable doubt, that the defendant intended to pass counterfeit currency — those who innocently pass a fake bill are unlikely to face conviction. That being said, it remains a possibility: therefore it is advisable to report any suspected currency you encounter to authorities.
As mentioned above, federal penalties for the use of counterfeit money can result in a 20-year prison sentence in addition to fines. The same applies to those who produce such currency with the intent to defraud.
In many states, however, counterfeiting is also known as forgery. For example, if you are found guilty of forgery (largely pertaining to false bills or coins, as well as securities) you could face up to five years in prison as well as $5,000 in fines in response to what is termed a third-degree felony in certain states. In other states, it is treated as a so-called “wobbler,” meaning that the crime can be charged as either a misdemeanor or felony depending on the context and circumstances. The misdemeanor forgery charge can result in one year in county jail, while the felony variant calls for up to three years behind bars.
Across most state laws and statutes, forgery or crimes related to counterfeit money typically call for a jail or prison sentence ranging from one to five years, and fines ranging from $1,000 to $100,000.
If you’re facing charges related to counterfeiting, passing of counterfeit money, or forgery more broadly, it would be in your best interests to secure legal representation as quickly as possible.
Having a skilled Alabama criminal defense attorney in your corner is the best thing you can do to improve your odds of winning the case, whether or not the issue has to be brought to trial. An experienced attorney will be able to gather the relevant facts and can advise you on how to proceed.
Convictions in response to forgery or counterfeiting charges often result in stiff financial penalties as well as a jail or prison sentence, and so it is vitally important to retain proper legal representation.
A counterfeiting money attorney can help you defend against these serious charges. Counterfeiting is considered fraud and if you made fake bills or coins, or even if you unknowingly used counterfeit money, a lawyer will help protect you and your legal rights.
No matter what your legal issue may be, it is always best to seek legal help early in the process. An attorney can help secure what is likely to be the best possible outcome for your situation and avoid both unnecessary complications or errors.
An attorney consultation should provide you with enough information so that you can make an informed decision on whether to proceed with legal help.
Pro se – This Latin term refers to representing yourself in court instead of hiring professional legal counsel. Pro se representation can occur in either criminal or civil cases.
Statute – Refers to a law created by a legislative body. For example, the laws enacted by Congress are statutes.
Subject matter jurisdiction – Requirement that a particular court have authority to hear the claim based on the specific type of issue brought to the court. For example, the U.S. Bankruptcy Court only has subject matter jurisdiction over bankruptcy filings, therefore it does not have the authority to render binding judgment over other types of cases, such as divorce.