Have you been charged with Forgery or other fraud? This crime can be hard to understand, because there are so many different things involved. If you aren't accustomed to the lingo, comprehending the complexities of the Forgery statute can be overwhelming. In this blog, we'll learn the basics when it comes to Forgery charges in Jefferson, Denver, and Adams County, and why you need to work with a unbeatable criminal defense lawyer if you have been charged.
What is Forgery?
Let's start with the basics: What exactly is Forgery, anyway? Well, that can be a difficult question to answer, because the statute in and of itself is confusing. Let me show you what I mean:“Aperson commits forgery, if, with intent to defraud, such person falsely makes, completes, alters, or utters a written instrument which is or purports to be, or which is calculated to become or represent if completed:
- Part of an issue of money, stamps, securities, or other valuable instruments issued by a government or government agency.”
The statute doesn't end there – in fact, our blog would be far too long and arduous if we included the entire statute. A simplified definition of Forgery can be found in one of our past blogs. Basically, Forgery is another form of Theft in Douglas, Arapahoe, and El Paso County. It is charged when documents are forged in order to trick people into providing valuable items.
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Using Counterfeit Documents = Forgery Charges
If a person uses counterfeit documents to trick another person, they will be charged with Forgery. There are many types of documents which can be forged, such as a check, car or home title, or employee time sheets. For a good example of how forging documents is a a legitimate form of theft, watch the movie Catch Me If You Can. The movie is based on the true story of Frank Abagnale Jr., a man who pretended to be a pediatrician, lawyer, college professor, and airline pilot simply by using forged documents. He also successfully cashed over $2.5 million in forged checks. While Mr. Abagnale's story turned out well (he became a Forgery consultant for the FBI), Forgery charges are serious and can result in prison time if ignored.
What is the Sentence for Forgery Charges?
Another confusing aspect of Forgery charges is the sentencing. There are two types of Forgery: 1st Degree Forgery, and 2nd Degree Forgery. The main difference between the two classifications is whether or not official documents were forged.
First Degree Forgery:
This more serious form of Forgery is charged when the forged document is official – such as stocks, deeds, money, contracts, public records, etc. This type of forgery is a class 5 felony, which results in possible prison sentence of up to 3 years.
Second Degree Forgery:
This form of Forgery is charged when the document which was forged is not official documents, as defined by the Colorado statute. This type of forgery is a class 1 misdemeanor, which results in a possible jail sentence of up to 18 months.
Charged with Forgery? Why You Need a Lawyer
If you have been charged with Forgery, be sure to contact an accomplished criminal defense attorney immediately. The sooner we are involved in your case, the better. There are many additional criminal charges which are commonly added to Forgery charges throughout Colorado. These include:
- Criminal Possession of Forgery Devices – C.R.S. 18-5-109
- Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument – C.R.S. 18-5-105
- Obtaining a Signature by Deception – C.R.S. 18-5-112
Because Forgery isn't usually charged on its own, you need to work with an aggressive attorney who knows when you have been overcharged, and can fight for justice in the courtroom. Don't ignore the charges against you. Instead, take control of your future and contact a lawyer who will fight to protect your reputation and future. Our goal is to get your case dismissed so you can move on with your life.
Get Help Now
If you or a loved one has been charged with Forgery, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at the O'Malley Law Office for a free consultation at 303-830-0880. If you or a friend needs a jail visit from an attorney, we can do that. Together, we will protect your future.Request a Free Consultation
Image courtesy of Serge Bertasius Photography at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
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