Washington, DC asked in Banking, Criminal Law and Federal Crimes for Maryland

Q: can I get charged for committing fraud I didn’t know was happening? Can I put this back on the bank? And my boss?

I got a new job, it’s been done through email so far, seems silly I know but I’m 18 and naive as heck apparently anyways, I get sent a check, I tell the bank lady what I thought it was for, the deposit it, my boss tells to go to Walmart and get money orders and send them else where. Later the bank calls me and tells me the check was fake, and fraud may have been committed.

3 Lawyer Answers
Eric Todd Kirk
Eric Todd Kirk
Answered
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Baltimore, MD
  • Licensed in Maryland

A: This is actually a pretty common and well-known scam. If you're charged you should immediately hire an experienced criminal defense attorney. Don't make any additional posts about the situation online.

Bruce Alexander Minnick
Bruce Alexander Minnick
Answered
  • Business Law Lawyer
  • Tallahassee, FL

A: Looks like you are going to get an education in this area of federal criminal law really quickly.

If I were you I would find some way to pay the bank back immediately for the money you took out using a fraudulent check. Neither the bank nor the law cares whether you knew the check was fraudulent or not. You did it, and it is what it is.

Hurry, before the bank sends the bad check to the police--or FBI, depending on how much money was stolen.

Thomas J. Maronick Jr
Thomas J. Maronick Jr
PREMIUM
Answered
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Glen Burnie, MD
  • Licensed in Maryland

A: The key is intent.. it is not fraud if you had no intent to do something unlawful. If your actions were required by the employer, and you acted without knowledge of the check being fake, and no reasonable person would have found the check to be fake (meaning it seemed real) then I don't see any intent to deprive by YOU.

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