US Customs and Border Protection recently intercepted over 1,200 fake IDs from 20 different States, including Texas. The fake IDs were mostly for college-aged people and were in three different packages headed to Chicago and New York. The packages were from Hong Kong and were described as game cards with a $20 value in customs.
Fake IDs are typically bought on the dark web. College students may use them to get into bars or clubs that serve alcohol. However, they can also be used for identity theft, fraud, human trafficking, smuggling, and more. If you have been charged with a crime related to using or purchasing a fake I.D., it is important that you understand what you are up against.
Fake ID Charges in Texas
Many fake IDs are purchased by teenagers who use them to get alcohol or purchase cigarettes before they are of legal age to do so. When a minor is caught trying to purchase or use a fake ID, prosecutors can bring charges for a Class C misdemeanor. This type of misdemeanor is punishable by a fine of up to $500. The individual will also have a mark on their criminal record. If the fake ID has a completely new identity on it, the suspect will face a more serious Class A misdemeanor charge and a fine of up to $2,000 and up to 180 days in jail.
In other cases, someone will steal another person’s identity to try to commit identity fraud. Identity fraud is a felony in Texas, and the suspect could face multiple years in prison, a fine of up to $10,000, and even more serious consequences. A suspect does not even need to use the information to be found guilty of the crime. Being in possession of illegally obtained personal information could warrant misdemeanor charges and a fine of up to $4,000.
Buying a Fake ID From China
It is a federal crime and a felony to use fake or false identification to fraudulently gain entry into or from the United States. If someone purchases a fake ID from China and tries to attempt to use it to fake a password, they can face federal-level felony identity theft charges with a two-year minimum mandatory prison sentence. They can also face charges for obtaining a fraudulent passport. The FBI considers using a fake ID a security threat to National Security. Fake IDs can be used to avoid no-fly watch lists, purchase weapons, send money, open bank accounts, and rent hotel rooms.
Contact a Dallas/Fort Worth Criminal Defense Attorney
If you are convicted of a federal crime related to a fake ID purchase from China, it is possible that you will serve time in jail. You will also face other consequences. Some employers may not hire you, even if your charges are eventually dismissed. It is important that you contact one of the experienced criminal defense attorneys at Abel Law Firm as soon as possible so we can begin investigating your case and protecting your rights.