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Federal Fraud

Fraudulent offenses can be charged at either the state or federal level depending on the facts of the case. Federal fraudulent crimes are prosecuted by governmental agencies including the Federal Bureau of Investigation and tend to carry harsh penalties that are far more severe than the state jurisdiction. The offense will also be prosecuted at a federal district court by a federal prosecutor, and they usually have more resources at their disposal than a state attorney. 

If you or someone you know has been arrested for federal fraud, it’s imperative you seek an experienced federal fraud defense lawyer today. Although it might not seem like a huge distinction, federal and state crimes have individual differences that make a significant impact on your sentencing. It’s important you have an attorney certified and experienced with federal court cases on your side before you make any major decisions.

Alachua County Fraud Defense Attorney | Lawyers that Handle Federal Cases

Are you under investigation by a federal agency for a fraud-related offense? If so, then it’s within your best interest to consult with the Gainesville federal defense lawyers at Galigani Law Firm. Our attorneys are certified to practice in the federal jurisdiction. We have dedicated years to defending clients accused of federal offenses including fraud, embezzlement, and racketeering.

Set up your first consultation with our Gainesville office by calling us at (352) 375-0812. Galigani Law Firmaccepts clients throughout all parts of Alachua County including Alachua, Hawthorne, Archer, Micanopy, Waldo, Newberry, High Springs and La Crosse.

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What Constitutes Federal Fraud?

Fraudulent offenses typically involve using deceit or deception to obtain something of value unlawfully. In some cases, the defendant commits the act because they are in a position of trust. In others, they commit the act by misrepresenting facts, forging documents, or creating documents that purport what they’re saying. Both federal and state fraudulent offenses share these traits, what determines their jurisdiction is the analysis of the fraud entailed.

Fraud offenses are typically handled in the federal jurisdiction if the defendant attempted to execute a scheme to defraud with a federal agency. For instance, if you are attempting to seek benefits through a federal program and you intentionally misrepresent facts, then the crime will be charged under the federal jurisdiction. The crime may also be deemed federal if the offense involved a large amount of money or it violated a federal law such as mail/wire fraud.

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Types of Federal Fraud

Fraud is technically an umbrella term under the U.S. Code and includes a multitude of offenses. These crimes can range from misrepresenting facts to get health care to using the mail to continue a scheme to defraud. Penalties for federal fraud offenses will depend on the facts surrounding the case and the value of the money, property, or services defrauded.

Listed below are several types of federal fraud crimes listed under the U.S. Code. 

Federal Bank Fraud

Defrauding a financial institution in an attempt to obtain money, credit or property through false pretenses, misrepresented facts, or promises is known as federal bank fraud. The offense is listed under 18 U.S.C. Section 1344, which basically enhances the penalties for fraudulent offense committed against financial institutions. The statute goes on to state anyone who attempts to commits federal bank fraud will face imprisonment and fines.

Listed below are the elements of bank fraud a federal prosecutor must prove beyond a reasonable doubt to convict a person of the crime. 

  • The defendant knowingly or intentionally carried out or attempted to carry out a scheme to defraud and the target was a financial institution or uses false or fraudulent pretenses, representations, or promises of material fact to obtain money, assets, or property from a financial institution
  • The representations, fraudulent pretenses or promises were all material
  • The intent of the defendant was to defraud the financial institution
  • The financial institution was federally chartered or insured

Under the U.S. Code, a conviction for bank fraud will result in a fine of $1 million dollars and a maximum prison sentence of 30 years. You may also be ordered by a judge to pay restitution to the financial institution in addition to the other statutory penalties.

Federal Health Care Fraud

Intentionally and knowingly deceiving or misrepresenting medical claims to the government or receiving self-referrals is known as federal health care fraud in the United States. The laws surrounding health care are incredibly complicated, and because of that the crime is listed across several statutes. The crime can range from falsifying medical claims to a government agency to receiving “kickbacks” for providing services or goods.

Listed below are several statutes related to health care fraud under the United States Code.

  • Criminal Health Care Fraud – 18 U.S.C Section 1347
    • A person is guilty of health care fraud if they executed a scheme to defraud a health care benefit program by using false or fraudulent material statements to obtain funds, benefits or services by a federal health care program.
  • Health Care Fraud Conspiracy -- 18 U.S.C. Section 1349
    • Health care fraud conspiracy is when one or more people plan to execute a fraudulent scheme to obtain benefits, money, or services from a federal healthcare program. The offense does not have to be carried out to face criminal charges. All the prosecutors need is evidence you intended to commit the crime.
  • Anti-Kickback Statutes – 18 U.S.C 1320a-7b
    • A “kickback” is a hidden financial agreement between doctors and hospitals or any health care provider or company. There are different types of kickbacks a doctor or hospital can receive but all share the same trait that doctors/health care providers use financial incentives to sell or use a certain company’s medical products or services. Kickbacks induced or rewarded referral for the federal Medicare or Medicaid government program will result in a criminal charge.
  • Stark Law – 42 U.S.C. Section 1395nn, 42 CFS Subpart J
    • Unlike the other listed statutes, the Stark Law is not part of the criminal code. The government may bring civil charges against the defendant instead using this statute. Under the Stark law, it’s illegal to make a referral for health services to an entity the defendant (who is a physician) has a financial relationship with and the entity submitted a claim for payment resulting from the referral.
  • False Claims Act -- 18 U.S.C. Section 287
    • Filing or applying to a government program with false or fraudulent claims is illegal. According to the statute, it’s illegal to make a claim or statement to get the government to pay the money on a claim and the claim or statement was false or fraudulent.

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Additional Resources 

Health Care Fraud U.S. Code – Visit the official website for the United States Code to look up the statute regarding health care fraud. Access the site to learn more about health care fraud, the penalties for the crime, penalty enhancements, admissible defenses and more. 

Report Fraud | U.S DOJ – Visit the official website for the United Stated Department of Justice to learn how you can report fraudulent activity. Access the site to learn about the various types of fraud under the U.S. code, their statutes, and where you can report a complaint.

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Federal Fraud Attorney Gainesville, FL | Alachua County

If you or someone you know has been arrested with a federal fraudulent offense, then contact Galigani Law Firm. Our skilled and experienced federal attorneys understand what it takes to go up against government agencies and prosecutors. We can compile evidence, call upon experts, file motions, and do whatever necessary so you receive the best outcome possible. 

Call us today at (352) 375-0812 to set up your first consultation with the lawyers at Galigani Law Firm. 

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