Experienced California Defense Attorneys
At Amicus Legal Group, our knowledgeable team of criminal defense attorneys represents clients facing all types of internet crimes. We approach every case with the understanding that lawyers would not exist without clients, and our primary goal is to address each of our client’s individual needs. We understand the stresses and anxieties that come along with being criminally charged, and we do everything we can to provide you with peace of mind through the process. When you decide to let Amicus Legal Group represent you in your case, it will be a decision we will make sure you do not regret.
California Internet Crimes Defense
Aggressive criminal defense attorneys defend clients facing all types of California cybercrimes
While the internet provides the illusion of privacy, the fact is that almost everything someone does online can be monitored. A user’s online identity is not anonymous. When the government believes that someone is engaging in illegal activity from their computer, it will not hesitate to bring criminal charges. Internet crimes often fall under both state and federal court jurisdiction, and these crimes can be prosecuted in either state or federal court. Prosecutors and judges take California cybercrimes very seriously, and anyone facing these serious allegations needs an attorney who is ready to stand up for their rights.
What Is a California Internet Crime?
Nowhere in state or federal law is the term internet crime defined. However, internet crimes, or cybercrimes, generally refer to any crime that relies on someone using a computer and a network to commit an illegal act. Thus, internet crimes can involve a wide array of illegal conduct. A few of the most common types of internet crimes are:
The possession, distribution or manufacturing of child pornography is an extremely serious crime that can be prosecuted under state or federal law. Federal law provides much harsher penalties, up to 20 years imprisonment for a first offense and 40 years imprisonment for a repeat offense.
More drug transactions are occurring online than ever before, and the federal government is privy to this fact. While buyers and sellers may think that they can maintain anonymity by using virtual currency, that is not necessarily the case. Federal drug trafficking charges can carry a potential sentence of up to life in prison, although the sentence depends heavily on the specific facts of the case and the individual’s prior record.
Extortion is when a person threatens to release potentially damaging or embarrassing information about another unless that person pays them money or performs some other requested action. Given the prevalence of social media, California blackmail crimes are becoming more common. If an act of extortion “obstructs, delays, or affects” interstate commerce, the crime is punishable by up to 20 years in jail.
The crime of hacking can be especially complex. However, simply stated, hacking is when someone accesses another’s computer or personal data without their permission. Hacking can be graded as either a misdemeanor or felony offense, carrying a potential punishment of up to 10 years in jail.
The First Amendment guarantees free speech – but those guarantees extend only to a certain point. Electronic harassment, or cyberstalking, involves using a computer to annoy, abuse, threaten or harass another person. Cyberstalking is either a misdemeanor of a felony, carrying a potential punishment of up to three years imprisonment for a first-time offense. This offense is also part of the state’s “three strikes” program, meaning if someone is convicted of a third offense, they face a mandatory 25 years in jail.
Over the past decade, the number of reported cases of identity theft has skyrocketed. Identity theft is often charged in state court. However, if a computer was used to obtain another’s information, the federal government may prosecute the case. Federal identity theft charges can result in a term of imprisonment of up to 15 years.
Phishing occurs when someone sends an email asking for personal information, pretend to be from a reputable company or organization. California phishing crimes can be extraordinarily complicated, and defending against these charges requires an in-depth knowledge of the relevant laws as well as an underlying knowledge of computer networks and electronic communication.
Tax Refund Fraud
Someone commits tax refund fraud if they obtain someone else’s social security number who did not file a tax return, and use that information to file the return. Often, someone will obtain the social security number of someone who recently died, either through the black market or by phishing. Thus, tax refund fraud is typically charged alongside other serious cybercrimes.
Regardless of the type, cybercrimes are very serious. However, many people charged with these crimes did not necessarily know that what they did was illegal or how to defend against the allegations. Thus, it is critical that anyone facing a California internet crime work with an experienced criminal defense attorney who is familiar with these complex cases.
Contact a criminal defense attorney for immediate assistance
If you have recently been arrested and charged with a California internet, reach out to the San Bernardino criminal defense attorneys at Amicus Legal Group. The firm aggressively defends clients facing all types of internet crimes. With extensive experience handling all types of cybercrimes in state and federal court, we have what it takes to help you defend against the allegations you are facing. To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation, call us at (888) 588-1777. You can also reach us through our online form.
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