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Cleveland Criminal Law Blog

Identity theft is a serious allegation: Fight back

Identity theft is a serious allegation that you need to defend yourself against as soon as possible. An accusation essentially says that you've been bold enough to take someone else's personal information and to use it for your own personal gain. Whether that's true or not, you have the right to protect yourself and to a fair trial if your case goes that far.

One kind of identity theft you could be accused of is credit card fraud. This is when a person takes a credit card or uses its information for his or her own benefit. For example, if you use, sell or buy the credit card information, you could be accused of identity theft and credit card fraud.

Chinese fentanyl trade blamed for Ohio overdoses

The slew of individuals caught with fentanyl in Ohio has been a major concern with the growing opioid epidemic, but a news release from July 24 may pinpoint where the influx of the dangerous drug came from. According to the report, it was a Chinese wholesale supplier that shipped the fentanyl to Northeast Ohio.

The Chinese national accused of bringing fentanyl and other drugs into the United States was arrested in Massachusetts and now faces drug charges. The opioids he allegedly brought into the country have been linked to a number of overdose deaths that took place in Northeastern Ohio.

If I use someone’s credit card, am I committing fraud?

The laws in Ohio and across the country regarding credit fraud and theft are very clear. Unauthorized use of a person’s credit card is illegal and a white-collar crime. You may have a history of using that person’s card with his or her permission. However, the one time you use that credit card information without the owner's permission could result in you facing criminal charges that can have an adverse impact on your life. 

Take some time to learn what credit card fraud is so you can take actions to avoid receiving a criminal charge. 

You're typically not really anonymous online

One prevailing myth about the internet is that you're basically anonymous while you're using it. While this can be true in some situations, much of what you do online is actually tracked.

For example, Google has records of the searches that you conduct. You can even read the list, if you want, for a given year. It will show you how many searches there were, what you were looking for and all the rest. You can see them in chronological order, and some people have said it's very revealing to see how your mind jumps around.

Fighting white-collar crime accusations: What to know

You've always tried to stay on the right side of the law, but you can't control everything that goes on at your business. You may not be surprised that you're facing white-collar crime allegations because of the size of the company, but that doesn't mean you should dismiss them.

There are many kinds of white-collar crimes. If you're accused of a white-collar crime, you need to know which crime you're accused of. You may be accused of fraud, insider trading, embezzlement or other white-collar crimes that potentially have serious penalties.

Having the ingredients to make drugs can get you in trouble

You know that you can be accused of a drug crime if you're in possession of items that could be used to create drugs, but are they really that common? It's true that many items that can be used to create drugs can be found in your home, and having the wrong combination of them in your possession could draw questions.

For example, consider this unusual formula for methamphetamine. It uses over-the-counter cold pills, two-liter soda bottles and some chemicals you may be able to find under the sink. With just a few shakes of the bottle, those mixing the items can create methamphetamine.

These common internet crimes can lead to jail sentences

There are many internet crimes that people participate in all around the world. From hacking to email scams, these crimes affect many people and have the potential to wipe out bank accounts and steal identities.

While some people may find themselves aiding a criminal without realizing it, many others choose to participate in these illegal acts. As such, it's important to seek a strong defense if you're caught for trying to steal someone's identity, credit card number or other information.

Weighing the expense of a white collar conviction

Many people who commit white collar crimes believe they will never be caught. It often comes as a surprise when law enforcement does catch them — and it is even more surprising to face the potential consequences that will follow. If you are facing charges such as these, it is important to consider your next step and weigh the long-term costs that could result from a conviction.

Many people avoid hiring a lawyer because of the perceived expense, but in reality, this amount is far less than what it could cost if you are convicted. Consider the following consequences and the financial — as well as social — impact that they might have on your life.

Woman faces over 200 felony charges for alleged actions

A single felony is enough to land you in prison. It requires a strong defense to fight against allegations, and even then, you may face penalties for the actions you've taken.

Sometimes, multiple actions can result in multiple felonies of various types. When that happens, it's usually in your best interests to discuss the different charges with your attorney and to understand what each charge means. Some charges are for more heinous crimes, while others are used when a crime is accidental or less severe.

Martin Shkreli to face trial for securities fraud

If you have followed the news about Martin Shkreli, you may have heard that he is to go to trial for allegations of securities fraud. You may already be familiar with some of the things he's done in the past, like having an account banned on Twitter for badgering a journalist or hiking the prices of life-saving drugs just to make a profit.

Now, he's facing securities fraud charges because the prosecution claims he had been tricking investors who were interested in his hedge fund. In December 2015, the man was arrested for crime alleged to have occurred between October 2009 and March 2014.

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