Mail fraud is a federal crime that’s been on the books for well over a century. Basically, the use of the mail system in the perpetuation of any type of scheme, whether it began in the mail, over the telephone or on the internet, constitutes mail fraud.
As our Delray Beach and Hollywood criminal defense attorneys know, in other words, in order for federal prosecutors to nab you for mail fraud (which carries a penalty of up to 20 years in federal prison and up to $1 million in fines), they only need to demonstrate that you used the mail as part of your scheme.
A man in Boca Raton is now accused of engaging in mail fraud while in the midst of an investment scheme in which he solicited investment money from clients and then spent the money on himself, as we will explore in this blog post.
Federal prosecutors allege that a Boca man committed mail fraud while cheating his clients (who thought they were supplying him with investment money) out of roughly $3 million. This is indeed a story we have seen countless times: a man claiming to have the secret(s) to investment success, preying on hopeful investors, and then using their investment money to enrich him or herself. The twist, here, is that the Boca Raton man used the US mail system in the perpetuation of his scheme, and thereby qualified himself for the federal charge of mail fraud.
As our Delray Beach and Hollywood criminal defense lawyers know, the Boca Raton man, according to a memo filed by federal prosecutors with the United States District Court of the Southern District of Florida on Wednesday, created a company called ABD Capital Management LLC back in 2004 in Boca. He is accused of taking money given to him for investment purposes and using it on personal expenses, which is, without question, illegal. Prosecutors have argued that the man used company money for expenses in casinos, for cash withdrawals from company accounts, and to pay off his personal credit cards. It’s estimated that the man stole more than $3 million total from 20 investors before he was caught back in 2012.
In order to “protect” himself, and to mislead “investors” into thinking he had truly invested their money, as our Delray Beach and Hollywood criminal defense lawyers know, the man created what the Sun-Sentinel calls “fake financial data” and he would mail, in bogus quarterly statements to investors, false information about the state of the investment company. By sending these fake quarterly statements (which allowed him to continue his illicit investment scheme) through the mail, he made himself eligible for the charge of mail fraud.
Clearly, as our our Delray Beach and Hollywood criminal defense lawyers know, the charge of mail fraud can be applied to cases in which the use of the mail system is not the central component of the scheme — again, there just has to be use of the mail in some part of the scheme in order for the feds to apply a federal mail fraud statute.
If you have any questions about this or any other federal or state criminal issue, or if you have been arrested for or charged with a crime in Palm Beach, Broward and/or Miami-Dade County, please contact our Delray Beach and Hollywood criminal defense lawyers by calling 1-888-5-DEFEND (1-888-533-3363). We look forward to assisting you!