COUNTERFEITING DEFENSE ATTORNEY
Punta Gorda Federal Crimes Defense Attorney
Many may not realize that the United States Secret Services was organized originally to enforce the laws against counterfeiting of U.S. currency and U.S. treasury securities. The Secret Service is a branch of the Treasury Department and the Treasury Department entrusts only a chosen few to the process of manufacturing U.S. currency and securities.
The illegal act of making forgeries of coins, postage stamps, or similar regulated items with the intention of passing them on as real and authentic is a federal offense. The crime is usually committed for economic gain. Producing a fake government securities document and cashing it in for real money is a very serious crime.
Anyone engaging in counterfeiting, whether intentionally or unintentionally, needs a well-crafted defense from an experienced criminal defense firm. Leskovich Law Group, P.A. has been serving clients for over 35 years and defending them against all types of criminal charges.
Types of Counterfeiting
It is against the law to sell or attempt to sell, possess, or manufacture counterfeit goods or services. When considering how many forms of counterfeiting there are, it is actually a common crime and can even be committed by mistake, as one could be in possession of a fake item without knowing it.
- Counterfeiting usually occurs in one of the following forms:
- Documentation – these can involves fake military pictures, immigration papers, and fake identification
- Products – the “knockoff” toys, clothing, electronics, handbags, shoes, CDs, etc. are close to the real thing but are typically of lower quality than the authentic items.
Patent and Trademark Infringement
The Trademark Counterfeiting Act of 1984 makes it a federal offense to use, intentionally and without authorization, a trademark protected by the copyright and patent laws. The laws were put in place to protect peoples’ creations while encouraging continued development of new ideas, arts, and products. The laws protect those distinguishing features of trademarks associated with certain names and designs and their services or products. Trade secrets are also protected against counterfeiting laws.
Penalties for Counterfeiting
There are many kinds of counterfeiting activities. The penalties one can face if found guilty of the crime can vary according to the severity of the offenses. For instance, dealing in counterfeit military goods and services or counterfeit drugs can carry a sentence for an individual of 20 years in prison and up to $500,000 in fines. A second or consecutive offense can mean fines up to $15,000,000 and up to 30 years in prison. For non-individuals the fines can range from $15,000,000 to $30,000,000.
In addition to criminal charges, the cases often involve civil lawsuit. If you were arrested and charged with a serious counterfeiting crime or you are being investigated, you should retain legal counsel immediately. Having legal support and the protection of your constitutional rights is important to have from the beginning of your case and throughout the criminal process. The Punta Gorda criminal lawyer you choose to represent you can make a difference in the outcome of your case. We provide an aggressive defense and work tirelessly for our clients, defending them with the goal of achieving the best possible case result.
You can spend years in prison and pay millions in fines if convicted of a counterfeiting crime. Find out how Leskovich Law Group, P.A. can help with your criminal case and call our offices today. .