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Scheme to Defraud under New York Law

If you were charged with scheme to defraud under New York law, then it is important to realize that the offense can be charged as either a misdemeanor or a felony. Whether the offense is a felony or misdemeanor depends on a host of different factors. Those different factors include the number of victims, the status of victims as vulnerable elderly persons, or the amount of the loss. Schemes to defraud can also target financial institutions.

Scheme to defraud offenses are prosecuted aggressively in Nassau County and throughout Long Island, including Suffolk County. At Law Office of Stephanie Selloni we fight aggressively to protect your rights and to resolve the case under best possible terms.

Stephanie Selloni’s office is conveniently located in Garden City in Nassau County, Long Island, NY. She welcomes your calls to discuss the case and possible defenses that might apply to your situation. Call 516-972-1212 today to discuss your case.

Types of Scheme to Defraud Charges in New York

New York’s Penal Laws provide for at least four different ways that a scheme to defraud can be charged including:

  • Scheme to Defraud in the Second Degree under PL 190.6;
  • Scheme to Defraud in the First Degree:
    • under PL 190.65(1)(a) (Ten or more persons);
    • under PL 190.65(1)(b) (One or more persons and property in excess of $1000); and
    • under PL 190.65(1)(c) (Vulnerable elderly person victim).

Scheme to Defraud in the Second Degree is classified as a Class A Misdemeanor under Penal Law 190.60. New York law provides that a person can be charged with scheme to defraud in the second degree when it is alleged that the person engages in a scheme constituting a systematic ongoing course of conduct with intent to defraud more than one person or to obtain property from more than one person by false or fraudulent pretenses, representations or promises, and so obtains property from one or more of such persons.

Definitions in New York's Scheme to Defraud Statute

Under this statute, it is necessary for the prosecutor to prove the identity of at least one person from whom the defendant so obtained property, but it is not necessary to prove the identity of any other intended victim. Penal Law § 190.60(2).

As used in the "scheme to defraud" statute, the term “intent” is defined as "a conscious objective or purpose." Under this definition of intent as applied to the scheme to defraud statute, a person acts with intent to defraud more than one person or to obtain property from more than one person by false or fraudulent pretenses, representations, or promises, when that person’s conscious objective or purpose is to do so. See Penal Law § 15.05(1).

Under the sceme to defraud statute, for the Scheme to Defraud Statute in the First Degree that applies to vulnerable elderly person victim version under PL 190.65(1)(c), the term “vulnerable elderly person” is defined to mean “a person sixty years of age or older who is suffering from a disease or infirmity associated with advanced age and manifested by demonstrable physical, mental or emotional dysfunction to the extent that the person is incapable of adequately providing for his or her own health or personal care." See Penal Law § 260.30(3).

Elements of Scheme to Defraud in New York’s PL Section 190.60

The scheme to defraud statute under New York’s PL Section 190.60 provides for the following three elements:

  1. That on or about _____, in the county of ________, the defendant, _________, engaged in a scheme constituting a systematic ongoing course of conduct;
  2. That the defendant did so with intent to defraud more than one person or to obtain property from more than one person by false or fraudulent pretenses, representations or promises; and
  3. That the defendant so obtained property from one or more of such persons, at least one of whom has been identified.

Scheme to Defraud in the First or Second Degree

Scheme to Defraud in the First Degree is a Class E felony under Penal Law 190.65(1)(a). It requires all of the same elements of scheme to defraud in the second degree, except that the prosecutor must prove the intent to defraud ten or more persons or to obtain property from ten or more persons.

Scheme to Defraud in the First Degree is a Class E felony under Penal Law 190.65(1)(b). It requires all of the same elements of scheme to defraud in the second degree, except that the prosecutor must prove that the defendant so obtained property with a value in excess of one thousand dollars from one or more such person.

Scheme to Defraud in the First Degree is a Class E felony under Penal Law 190.65(1)(c). It requires all of the same elements of scheme to defraud in the second degree, except that the prosecutor must prove that the defendant acted with intent to defraud more than one person, more than one of whom is a vulnerable elderly person.

Finding an Attorney in Long Island, NY, for Scheme to Defraud Charges

If you were charged with scheme to defraud as either a misdemeanor or felony offense than it is important to find an attorney who can represent you aggressively against the charges and potential punishments. Call Stephanie Selloni, a criminal defense attorney in Nassau County, at 516-972-1212 to discuss the particular facts of your case and defenses that might apply.

Stephanie Selloni represents clients charged with a variety of different white collar crimes throughout Nassau County, Long Island, New York and the surrounding areas in Long Island and New York City. Related offenses include credit card fraud, identity theft, grand larceny, and possession of stolen property.