A Houston Criminal Defense And Personal Injury Law Firm With A Nationwide Reach.

What should you know about mail fraud?

On Behalf of | Nov 30, 2020 | Federal Crimes

In Texas, mail fraud is a serious subject with hefty consequences. But mail fraud is also complex, with specific laws addressing it. 

If you are facing charges related to mail fraud, you must understand what you are working with. You need to know how the law views mail fraud and what that means for you. 

How do you define fraud and intentionality?

The Congressional Research Service defines mail fraud. In its simplest form, it is the use of mail services to intentionally defraud someone. Breaking this down, what does it mean to defraud someone? This is a separation of a person from their money, assets or honest services through the use of underhanded means. 

Next, what does intentionality mean in this situation? It means that you must set out with the express purpose of defrauding someone else. You must take actions with the ultimate goal that you will separate someone from their assets, money or services. 

What makes mail fraud unique?

Use of mail services differentiates mail fraud from wire fraud. Wire fraud uses electronic communications. Mail fraud requires the use of the United States postal system. This includes both private couriers and the United States Postal Service. It also covers anything shipped through the post, such as packages, post cards, letters and more. 

Mail fraud is a felony due to the use of the postal system. You can face up to 20 years in prison if convicted. You also face fines of up to $250,000 for individuals or $500,000 for organizations. If a fraudulent scheme targets a financial institution, the penalties are even higher.