A 23-year-old has been arrested on charges that she allegedly sold the personal information of a person who survived the Holocaust, NBC Miami reports.
Charges of identify theft in Fort Lauderdale have become more and more prevalent as millions of Americans have access to computer networks and the Internet. They can use this access to create identity theft schemes that can steal away millions of dollars.
And South Florida has a bad reputation for these types of white-collar schemes because there are many older citizens who may be vulnerable to these types of crimes. But as Fort Lauderdale criminal defense lawyers know, not everyone who is arrested is guilty.
It takes a sophisticated scam to steal money by using Social Security numbers, addresses, names and other information. The average person can’t do it without training and research, and sometimes authorities simply don’t have the evidence to connect a person to the crime.
Criminal charges can stem from stealing credit card numbers, purchasing items with stolen credit cards, applying for loans and outright stealing money.
In this situation, a woman who worked for Jewish Community Services of South Florida in North Miami was arrested after being set up by authorities. As a worker with the organization, the woman had access to the names, addresses and Social Security numbers of 30 people.
An informant had contacted her and offered her $1,000 for some information so that the informant could file fraudulent tax returns. When the woman met the informant and agreed to make the purchase, she was later arrested.
The organization’s officials have said they will cooperate with police and will notify the potentially affected alleged victims to help them take measures to guard their identities.
Years ago, people may have worried about thieves taking their credit cards to rack up charges for which they could later seek reimbursement from the credit card company. Today, if a person’s identity is stolen or his or her personal information is otherwise compromised, it can be used in a way that can damage credit scores and cause financial disaster.
Identity theft charges in Florida can lead not only to serious prison time, but also possible probation and major monetary penalties. A person who is convicted of the charge can be forced to pay back the money that was lost either to the victim or to his or her lending institution. Plus, vehicles and other property purchased with the money allegedly gained from the scheme may also be forfeited.
And authorities are taking a hard-line stance against people charged with these crimes in Florida because of the senior population. It’s important to note that hiring an experienced criminal defense lawyer is your best chance to fight off the charges.
There are defenses that can be presented and the charges can be beaten. But it takes time and the commitment of a Fort Lauderdale criminal defense lawyer who is dedicated to fighting on your behalf.
If you are arrested in West Palm Beach or elsewhere in South Florida, contact Leifert & Leifert at 954-523-9600 or 561-988-8000 for a free consultation.
Miami Woman Charged With Selling Holocaust Survivors’ Personal Info, by Brian Hamacher, NBC Miami