Fraud Destroy Conceal Writings occurs when a person, with
intent to defraud or harm another, destroys, removes, conceals, alters, substitutes, or otherwise impairs the verity, legibility, or availability of a writing, other than a governmental record.
First, the item must be altered -- not an outright forgery. Second, the alteration must be made with the intent to defraud or harm another person.
The list of "writings" under the Fraud Destroy Conceal Writing statute, is a long one, and includes: printing, recording information, money, coins, tokens, stamps, seals, credit cards, badges, trademarks, symbols of value, right, privilege, or identification, and universal product codes, labels, price tags, or markings on goods.
Interestingly, the penalty for Fraud Destroy Conceal Writing is the difference between the original item and the fraud item. So if a person alters a document to make it roughly $5,000 more expensive (and thus pocket $5k), then that would be a State Jail Felony. The aggregate amounts coincide with the normal theft values for each level, which can be found below.
Fraud Destroy Conceal Writing is considered a Crime of Moral Turpitude. This means they are offenses involving traits of honestly and trust in the community. Offenses that, if convicted, may portrait the person as being dishonest. Crimes of Moral Turpitude are among the most commonly reported on criminal history background checks, and are scrutinized by potential employers, colleges, landlords, and law enforcement. They may disqualify a person from serving on jury duty, holding public offices, obtaining licensing and clearance in certain fields, traveling into other counties, obtaining loans and mortgages, and more. They will also be allowed to be disclosed to the jury or judge if you are ever testifying at a hearing or trial.
If you're looking for other offenses that are related to this one, you can see more information below, or click related legal offenses.
Fraud Destroy Conceal Writing arrests will result in jail -- and a bail bond will be required for release from Jail. An Attorney can help obtain a Personal Bond for Fraud Destroy Conceal Writing by arguing to a Judge for release. This will require hiring the attorney for both the jail release and representation on the case itself; although typically the jail release fee is the deposit for representation.
Sometimes an officer will file arrest warrant for Fraud Destroy Conceal Writing, which will require a Walkthrough to clear the Arrest Warrant. Doing a Walkthrough quickly is important, because most of the time a person does not go into the jail during the surrender process. Call us for more details if you have an active Travis County Arrest Warrant for Fraud Destroy Conceal Writing.
Keates Law Firm can act quickly to assist with a personal bond to release that person. Be sure to read more about Bond, Personal Bonds, and Travis County Jail Releases.
Defenses for Fraud Destroy Conceal Writing vary, considering there are no many types of 'writings' in the statute. So whichever one a person is charged under would require an in-depth analysis concerning defenses. If you'd like to talk in detail about your situation, or if you have questions, contact us for a Free Case Consultation. Keep in mind, Keates Law Firm only practices in Austin and Travis County.
Hiring the right attorney from the beginning is important. Poor legal decisions will have a negative effect upon the case as it progresses. The Keates Law Firm has over 16+ Years Experience handling Fraud Destroy Conceal Writing cases. Our focus is to try and have the case dismissed against you. We don't even discuss pleas until all legal and negotiation options have been explored in detail.
Call Us to talk about your particular case and situation. It's a 100% Free Phone Consultation with Criminal Defense Attorney Keates. No Sales Pitches, No Hassles. We'll see if we are the right Law Firm for you, and give you a quote. Be sure to check out Keates Law Firm's Reviews and also our past cases and Results.
Goals vary, depending on a person's charge, criminal history, and other factors, but ideally, the goal should be a reduction of charges, a dismissal, and avoiding heavy fines for any Fraud Destroy Conceal Writing charge. While not common in Travis County, often times the goal becomes avoiding jail, or even getting a favorable probation with a possible dismissal at the end, called Deferred Adjudication. If dismissed, a person can later seek an Expunction of a Criminal Record, which is where a Judge Orders the offense records destroyed, including police reports, court records, and prosecutor files.
Likewise, if Deferred Adjudication is successfully completed, the person can have thier record sealed through Motions for NonDisclosure.
(a) A person commits an offense if, with intent to defraud or harm another, he destroys, removes, conceals, alters, substitutes, or otherwise impairs the verity, legibility, or availability of a writing, other than a governmental record.
|Level of Offense||Punishment||Fines|
|less than $100||Class C Misdemeanor||Not Jailable||No more than $500 fines|
|$100 or more but less than $750||Class B Misdemeanor||Not more than 180 days in a county jail and/or no more than $2,000 fines|
|$750 or more but less than $2,500||Class A Misdemeanor||Not more than 1 year in a county jail and/or no more than $4,000 fines|
|$2,500 or more but less than $30,000||State jail felony||180 days to 2 years in a state jail and/or no more than $10,000 fines|
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