Conducting any type of business can come under scrutiny from time to time. Employees may have complaints, or the Internal Revenue Service may feel the need to conduct an audit over financial matters. While these can be stressful and difficult to address, your situation can become more distressing if you are accused of criminal charges.
You may believe that you conduct your business affairs in accordance with the law, but for some reason, you have come under suspicion of law enforcement. Particularly, they suspect that you or your company has committed wire fraud. As a result, an investigation is underway looking into your activities.
Understandably, you may want to panic when under suspicion for a crime. However, staying calm may be in your best interests. Though you are only under investigation and formal criminal charges have not yet come about, you can still help yourself by gaining information on wire fraud and its related charges. Having this information may help you feel more at ease and allow you to start thinking of defense strategies should charges come about.
What does wire fraud involve?
Wire fraud is considered a scam in which a person or entity attempts to defraud another person or entity through the use of phone lines or other electronic communications, including internet communication, television transmissions, phone calls and faxes. If authorities want to prove that this crime took place, they would need to prove the following elements:
- You created or participated in a fraudulent scheme to gain the money or property of another person or entity.
- You took such actions with the intent to defraud the other party.
- Reasonable expectations existed that you would use wire communications for fraudulent purposes.
- You did, indeed, use interstate wire communications.
In many cases, investigations for wire fraud can come about in connection to other suspected criminal activity. You may come under investigation because of your association with other suspects or because you own a company where suspicious activity may have occurred, even if you did not carry out the activity.
As mentioned, even if formal criminal charges have not yet come about, you may want to gain information. Discussing the investigation and related matters with a South Carolina attorney could help you understand what the investigation may entail and what you may need to do if formal charges come against you.