Review of State and Federal Cybercrime Charges
California is the primary technology center in the United States due to all the major companies in Silicon Valley. It is also a major source of all types of state and federal cybercrimes, which is often called “internet fraud.”
In response, prosecutors have become more aggressive on pursuing internet fraud cases. There are now special units that investigate and prosecute internet fraud and cybercrime criminal cases.
Internet fraud and cybercrime are broad terms describing a wide range of various fraud-related offenses that involve use of the internet.
State vs. federal crime
Most of these crimes are prosecuted under California law in state courts, but the more serious cases are charged as a federal crime. There are even some prosecuted as a state and federal crime.
Computers improve our lives immensely while also creating extraordinary new capabilities and risks.
Some of the risks are serious, not just of distraction like surfing the internet but to such serious misuses of a computer's power as to run afoul of the law. Cybercrimes often grab the news headlines.
Our Los Angeles criminal defense lawyers are providing readers a detailed review below.
Many forms of cybercrime
The FBI lists these different forms of cybercrime, among many others that could make the list:
- identity theft stealing personal information for fraud;
- email scams defrauding the unsophisticated and
- spoof or phishing for access to business and financial accounts;
- ransomware freezing business and government computers for ransom;
- online predators soliciting minors for sexual acts;
- cyberstalking using computer access to track victims of violence;
- cyberbullying posing threats online;
- child pornography sale and distribution;
- network intrusions threatening security.
Congress and state legislatures have clearly taken notice of the significant impact of dangerous online activity, adding many cybercrimes to federal and state criminal codes.
California State and Federal Cybercrime Charges
Federal charges are easy to invoke when so much internet traffic is across state lines. The state of California also has many statutes dealing with internet fraud, including:
18 U.S.C. 2422 – coercing or enticing minors,
18 U.S.C. 2253 – child pornography,
18 U.S.C. 1028 – identity theft,
18 U.S.C. 1029 – credit card fraud,
18 U.S.C. 1030 – computer hacking,
18 U.S.C. 1951 – blackmail and extortion,
Penal Code 653.2 PC – cyber harassment,
Penal Code 502 PC – unauthorized computer access,
Penal Code 530.5 PC – identity theft,
Penal Code 288.2 PC – sending harmful matter to a minor,
Penal Code 288.4 PC – arrange meeting with a minor.
Prosecution of Cyber Crimes
Federal and state law enforcement officials devote increasing resources to prosecuting cybercrimes.
There are several agencies working in alliances to detect, prosecute, and prevent cybercrime, such as:
- Federal Bureau of Investigation,
- Secret Service,
- Immigration and Customs Enforcement,
- Transportation Security Administration,
- National Center for Missing & Exploited Children,
- National Cyber Security Alliance,
- International Association of Chiefs of Police,
- National Sheriffs Association.
Increase of false allegations
Increasing efforts to prosecute cybercrimes, though, are increasing cybercrime charges against the innocent.
With their access to security codes and frequent electronic forays across systems, IT professionals face special risks of false accusations of computer crimes.
But anyone using a device of any kind to access anything on the internet could stumble into one of the many sites that law enforcement officials use to attract cybercriminals.
There are many reports that indicate the FBI has long operated cyber sting operations.
Indeed, the theft of one's electronic device for criminal activity, or accessing one's device to commit criminal activity, can leave electronic trails suggesting that the device's owner, not the thief, engaged in the criminal activity.
How many stories have we heard of hackers taking control of a celebrity's social media account to wreak havoc? Those stories aren't so entertaining when the hack's nefarious purpose leaves suspicion of the account owner's involvement.
How Can I Fight Cybercrime Charges?
If you face cybercrime charges or a cybercrime investigation, then you need expert counsel to assist with your defense.
Our experienced criminal defense lawyers, working with forensic experts, can help you manage any remaining risk that others may continue to misuse your devices and
Defense counsel and experts can also secure devices and preserve electronic evidence in your favor.
If investigators have already seized your computer and electronic accounts, then we can communicate with investigators and prosecutors, or third-party providers, ensuring that you have reasonable access to what you need to continue with your life while obtaining and preserving that all important evidence in your favor.
Some of the most common defenses against internet fraud related charges include:
- lack of knowledge,
- lack of intent,
- entrapment by law enforcement,
- unreasonable search and seizure,
- false accusation,
- mistaken identity.
Our law firm is familiar with defending cybercrime charges will ensure that you preserve your rights against self-incrimination and unreasonable search and seizure.
Your constitutional rights apply just as much in a cybercrime proceeding as in any other criminal proceeding.
Your constitutional rights are also just as important to your defense in a cybercrime proceeding as they are in other criminal proceedings.
Criminal Defense for Cybercrime Charges
Given the seriousness and complexity of cybercrime charges, and the special technology expertise that their defense typically entails, you need to retain the best criminal defense lawyers to fight the charges.
We know how to challenge, weaken, and defeat the prosecution's case in a cybercrime case to minimize conviction risk.
We have the trial victories that prove our ability to defend the most serious state and federal cybercrime charges.
Eisner Gorin LLP is a nationally recognized criminal law firm that serves people throughout Southern California and across the United States.
Our office is located at 1999 Avenue of the Stars, 11th Fl., Los Angeles, CA 90067.
Our main office is in LA County next to the Van Nuys Court at 14401 Sylvan St #112 Van Nuys, CA 91401.
You can call us for a free immediate response at (877) 781-1570 or contact the firm online.