A person’s identity is more than the person’s name and address. It includes people’s social security numbers, financial information, medical records and other important information. Much of this information is protected from others in order to prevent theft. If this information is used for the financial benefit of another person, then identity theft charges could be brought against the person using the information.
According to reports, several individuals in New Jersey are facing criminal charge following allegations of identity theft. Prosecutors claim that seven individuals obtained sensitive personal information about certain individuals. This information included government issued identifications. These documents, prosecutors say, were used to obtain fabricated drivers’ licenses, credit cards and store gift cards.
With these cards, police say, the individuals obtained nearly $500,000 worth of merchandize. These included expensive luxury items like cell phones, jewelry, alcohol and power tools. After a several week long investigation, police froze $540,000 in cash, found 250 fraudulent driver’s licenses and seized $75,000 in cash.
The alleged perpetrators are facing various theft charges including second-degree theft, second-degree possession of identifying documents to facilitate fraud and other criminal charges. They are facing serious consequences including between five and 10 years in prison. Additional penalties could include restitution, fines and probation.
Identity theft and other property charges often stem from a police investigation. During this investigation, police must follow certain protocols in order to protect a person’s constitutional rights. In order to ensure that a person’s rights are protected before, during and after an investigation, a criminal defense strategy is needed. With the right criminal defense people can not only protect their constitutional rights but they may be able to fight the charges and prove their innocence.