Identity theft occurs when an individual steals another person’s personal information and uses it to access financial aspects of his or her life. For instance, the person may withdraw funds from the other individual’s bank account or take out loans or open credit cards in his or her name.
According to Consumer Affairs, Texas had the sixth most reported incidents of identity theft per 100,000 people in 2022. The government allegations of the crime very seriously, classifying it as a felony with penalties of up to 99 years in prison and a fine of up to 10,000 dollars. There are ways for defendants to fight against charges of identity theft.
Failure by police to follow proper procedures
One potential argument is that the investigating police officers carried out the investigation wrong. For example, if they carried out a search without a warrant or acquired a warrant based on evidence from wiretapping or searching the accused’s home, then information from these illegal activities is possibly not admissible in court since they violated the Fourth Amendment. Threats, altering evidence, relying on circumstantial proof and similar missteps may also create a basis for fighting against the charges.
Innocence by consent or lack of intent
Defendants can also help prove their innocence by showing that they had permission from the personal information’s owner or that they never intended to commit fraud. Individuals may borrow a person’s credit card with the owner’s full knowledge, accidentally use his or her account if they share the same computer or make another simple error. Accidents do not constitute identity theft. Documentation of consent or proof that the accused did not profit helps in such cases.
It is important to gather evidence of misinterpretation of actions or police misconduct swiftly. It can be difficult to unentangle the mess without it.