Federal Bank Fraud, Mail Fraud, and Wire Fraud Crimes

Federal Bank Fraud, Mail Fraud, and Wire Fraud Crimes

Bank fraud, mail fraud, and wire fraud are all types of financial crimes that involve deceptive practices to defraud individuals, organizations, or financial institutions.

Here’s an Overview of Each:

Bank Fraud:

Bank fraud refers to the use of illegal means to obtain money, assets, or other property owned or held by a financial institution. It typically involves fraudulent activities such as false statements, misrepresentation, forgery, or other deceptive tactics to obtain funds from a bank, credit union, or similar financial institution. Bank fraud can be committed by individuals, organized groups, or even bank employees.

Examples of Bank Fraud Include:

• Falsifying loan applications or supporting documents to secure a loan.
• Embezzling funds from a bank or customers’ accounts.
• Creating counterfeit checks or altering checks for personal gain.
• Using stolen or unauthorized credit card information to make purchases or obtain cash advances.

Mail Fraud:

Mail fraud involves the use of the postal system or any private interstate carrier to carry out fraudulent activities. It encompasses schemes that use mail or other shipping methods to send fraudulent materials, solicitations, or communications to deceive individuals or entities for financial gain.

Examples of Mail Fraud Include:

• Sending false invoices or payment demands to trick individuals or businesses into making payments for nonexistent goods or services.
• Using fraudulent sweepstakes or lottery notifications to deceive recipients into sending money or personal information.
• Promoting bogus investment opportunities through mailings to defraud investors.
• Offering fake employment opportunities and requesting upfront fees or personal information.

Wire Fraud:

Wire fraud is similar to mail fraud but involves the use of electronic communications, such as telephone, fax, or the internet, to carry out fraudulent schemes. Wire fraud encompasses a wide range of fraudulent activities that use electronic communications to deceive victims and obtain money or property.

Examples of Wire Fraud Include:

• Sending fraudulent emails, commonly known as phishing, to trick individuals into revealing sensitive financial information or login credentials.
• Using fraudulent online auctions or sales platforms to deceive buyers into making payments for nonexistent products.
• Conducting fraudulent wire transfers or electronic fund transfers to misappropriate funds from individuals or businesses.
• Engaging in business email schemes, where scammers impersonate company executives to deceive employees into wiring money to fraudulent accounts.

It’s important to note that these are general descriptions and specific laws and regulations regarding these crimes may vary by jurisdiction.


Penalties for bank, mail, and wire fraud crimes vary depending on the jurisdiction and the specific circumstances of the offense. However, here is some general information about the potential penalties for these crimes in the United States:

Bank Fraud:

Bank fraud involves obtaining money, assets, credits, or other property from a financial institution through fraudulent means. The penalties for bank fraud are governed by federal law in the United States, specifically under 18 U.S.C. Section 1344. The maximum penalties for bank fraud can include imprisonment for up to 30 years and fines of up to $1,000,000.

Mail Fraud:

Mail fraud involves using the mail system to execute a scheme to defraud others. This offense is also governed by federal law, specifically under 18 U.S.C. Section 1341. The maximum penalties for mail fraud can include imprisonment for up to 20 years and fines.

Wire Fraud:

Wire fraud involves using electronic communications, such as phone calls, emails, or electronic fund transfers, to carry out a fraudulent scheme. It is also governed by federal law under 18 U.S.C. Section 1343. The penalties for wire fraud are similar to those for mail fraud, with a maximum punishment of imprisonment for up to 20 years and fines.

It’s worth noting that these are the maximum penalties, and the actual punishment depends on various factors, such as the severity of the offense, the amount of money involved, the defendant’s criminal history, and other aggravating or mitigating circumstances.

What Does a Federal Bank Fraud, Mail Fraud, and Wire Fraud Criminal Defense Attorney Do?

A defense attorney experienced in defending federal bank fraud, mail fraud, and wire fraud crimes is responsible for providing legal representation to individuals or organizations facing felony charges related to these offenses.

Here’s an Overview of What Such an Attorney Typically Does:

Case Evaluation: The criminal defense attorney will thoroughly analyze the client’s case, examining the evidence, witness statements, and any other relevant information to assess the strengths and weaknesses of the prosecution’s case. They will identify potential defense strategies and determine the best course of action.

Legal Advice and Counsel: The defense attorney will provide legal guidance to the client, explaining the charges, potential consequences, and available defense options. They will help the client understand their rights and obligations throughout the legal process.

Investigation: The defense attorney will conduct an independent investigation to gather evidence, interview witnesses, and examine any relevant documents or records. This investigation aims to uncover any inconsistencies or weaknesses in the prosecution’s case and gather evidence to support the defense.

Defense Strategy Development: Based on the case evaluation and investigation, the attorney will develop a defense strategy tailored to the specific circumstances of the case. This strategy may involve challenging the credibility of witnesses, contesting the admissibility of evidence, or presenting alternative explanations for the alleged fraudulent activities.

Plea Bargaining: If it’s in the client’s best interest, the defense attorney may negotiate with the prosecution for a plea bargain. This involves seeking a reduction in charges or penalties in exchange for the client’s guilty plea. The defense attorney will advise the client on whether accepting a plea deal is advisable, considering the potential risks and benefits.

Trial Representation: If the case goes to trial, the defense attorney will represent the client in court. They will present the defense’s case, cross-examine prosecution witnesses, challenge the prosecution’s evidence, and make persuasive arguments to the judge or jury. The attorney will aim to create reasonable doubt in the minds of the jurors regarding the client’s guilt.

Legal Documentation: The defense attorney will handle the preparation and filing of legal documents, such as motions, briefs, and appeals. They will ensure that all necessary paperwork is properly completed, submitted within deadlines, and complies with the relevant legal requirements.

Negotiations and Settlements: In some cases, the defense attorney may engage in negotiations with the prosecution outside of the trial setting to explore the possibility of resolving the case through a settlement or agreement that is favorable to the client’s interests.

Post-Trial Assistance: If the client is convicted, the defense attorney will present witnesses and mitigation evidence to argue for the lowest possible sentence and can assist with post-trial matters, such as preparing an appeal or seeking a sentence reduction.

Overall, a criminal defense attorney experienced in federal bank fraud, mail fraud, and wire fraud crimes works diligently to protect the rights of their clients, challenge the prosecution’s case, and strive for the best possible outcome given the circumstances of the case.

The experienced criminal defense lawyers at the Attorneys For Freedom Law Firm are admitted to practice in federal court and have represented many clients charged with federal bank fraud, mail fraud, and wire fraud crimes for over 3 decades. Our attorneys have the experience and knowledge to provide the best possible defense of these charges.

To schedule a Strategy Session with an experienced federal bank fraud, mail fraud, and wire fraud crimes attorney, contact the Attorneys For Freedom today. We can be reached online at AttorneysForFreedom.com or by calling our Arizona office at 480-755-7110.


Arizona Office Address:
3185 S. Price Rd.
Chandler, AZ 85248
Phone: 480-755-7110
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