18 US Code § 471-472-473-474-479-480 Counterfeiting and Forgery


The criminal act of Forgery is a class 4 felony which can be punished by up to 3.75 years in prison. Although most forgery cases involve allegations that the defendant endorsed or presented a counterfeit or stolen check, the law permits the prosecution to file that charge even when no money or checks are involved. All forgery charges in Miami, Florida carry potentially stiff consequences and you should have an aggressive Miami Forgery Attorney on your side.

    Under Florida law, a person commits forgery if they do any of the following with the intent to defraud:

    Falsely manufactures, transforms or changes any paper, document, check or other instrument; or

    Has in their possession a written instrument that has been falsely altered, made or completed; or

    Presents or offers a document that has either been forged or contains information that is false.

Check forgery usually involves endorsing or presenting a forged check to a bank or check cashing institution. With the prevalence of computers in today's society, many of these forged checks are completely fictitious and were created without the account holders knowledge. Other Miami check forgery cases involve legitimate checks that were either stolen or altered. Regardless of the nature of your Miami check forgery case, you should have an skilled Miami Forgery Lawyer like David M. Garvin who has handled a wide variety of cases involving checks, credit cards, traveler's checks and other forged instruments.

Many Miami forgery cases have nothing to do with checks or money. Because the forgery law is written so broadly, it permits the prosecution to file forgery charges when a person signs a false name after being arrested or uses an assumed identity in order to obtain legitimate employment. Even though many of these non-financial forgery cases are victimless, the county attorney's office aggressively prosecutes them and may seek a term of incarceration. Miami Forgery Attorney David M. Garvin has represented many clients charged with these types of offenses and will provide you with the best possible defense.

A Miami forgery conviction can have a drastic effect on your future. Potential employers usually obtain a criminal history for any new potential hires. A forgery conviction could potentially jeopardize your position with a company. Not to mention that you could also be facing prison, jail, probation, fines and restitution as well.  Miami Forgery Attorney David M. Garvin is committed to providing his clients with the best defense available.

18 U.S. Code § 480 - Possessing counterfeit foreign obligations or securities
Whoever, within the United States, knowingly and with intent to defraud, possesses or delivers any false, forged, or counterfeit bond, certificate, obligation, security, treasury note, bill, promise to pay, bank note, or bill issued by a bank or corporation of any foreign country, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 20 years, or both.

18 U.S. Code § 479 - Uttering counterfeit foreign obligations or securities
Whoever, within the United States, knowingly and with intent to defraud, utters, passes, or puts off, in payment or negotiation, any false, forged, or counterfeited bond, certificate, obligation, security, treasury note, bill, or promise to pay, mentioned in section 478 of this title, whether or not the same was made, altered, forged, or counterfeited within the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 20 years, or both.

18 U.S. Code § 474 - Plates, stones, or analog, digital, or electronic images for counterfeiting obligations or securities
(a) Whoever, having control, custody, or possession of any plate, stone, or other thing, or any part thereof, from which has been printed, or which may be prepared by direction of the Secretary of the Treasury for the purpose of printing, any obligation or other security of the United States, uses such plate, stone, or other thing, or any part thereof, or knowingly suffers the same to be used for the purpose of printing any such or similar obligation or other security, or any part thereof, except as may be printed for the use of the United States by order of the proper officer thereof; or

Whoever makes or executes any plate, stone, or other thing in the likeness of any plate designated for the printing of such obligation or other security; or

Whoever, with intent to defraud, makes, executes, acquires, scans, captures, records, receives, transmits, reproduces, sells, or has in such person’s control, custody, or possession, an analog, digital, or electronic image of any obligation or other security of the United States; or

Whoever sells any such plate, stone, or other thing, or brings into the United States any such plate, stone, or other thing, except under the direction of the Secretary of the Treasury or other proper officer, or with any other intent, in either case, than that such plate, stone, or other thing be used for the printing of the obligations or other securities of the United States; or

Whoever has in his control, custody, or possession any plate, stone, or other thing in any manner made after or in the similitude of any plate, stone, or other thing, from which any such obligation or other security has been printed, with intent to use such plate, stone, or other thing, or to suffer the same to be used in forging or counterfeiting any such obligation or other security, or any part thereof; or

Whoever has in his possession or custody, except under authority from the Secretary of the Treasury or other proper officer, any obligation or other security made or executed, in whole or in part, after the similitude of any obligation or other security issued under the authority of the United States, with intent to sell or otherwise use the same; or

Whoever prints, photographs, or in any other manner makes or executes any engraving, photograph, print, or impression in the likeness of any such obligation or other security, or any part thereof, or sells any such engraving, photograph, print, or impression, except to the United States, or brings into the United States, any such engraving, photograph, print, or impression, except by direction of some proper officer of the United States

Is guilty of a class B felony.

(b) For purposes of this section, the term “analog, digital, or electronic image” includes any analog, digital, or electronic method used for the making, execution, acquisition, scanning, capturing, recording, retrieval, transmission, or reproduction of any obligation or security, unless such use is authorized by the Secretary of the Treasury. The Secretary shall establish a system (pursuant to section 504) to ensure that the legitimate use of such electronic methods and retention of such reproductions by businesses, hobbyists, press and others shall not be unduly restricted.

18 U.S. Code § 473 - Dealing in counterfeit obligations or securities
Whoever buys, sells, exchanges, transfers, receives, or delivers any false, forged, counterfeited, or altered obligation or other security of the United States, with the intent that the same be passed, published, or used as true and genuine, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 20 years, or both.

18 U.S. Code § 472 - Uttering counterfeit obligations or securities
Whoever, with intent to defraud, passes, utters, publishes, or sells, or attempts to pass, utter, publish, or sell, or with like intent brings into the United States or keeps in possession or conceals any falsely made, forged, counterfeited, or altered obligation or other security of the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 20 years, or both.

18 U.S. Code § 471 - Obligations or securities of United States

Other Laws in Economic Crimes Defense

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