If you or your business face criminal fraud charges or fraud investigation, it’s essential to appoint a team of experienced fraud solicitors as soon as possible. It’s crucial to act fast when dealing with allegations of fraud as it could have severe consequences for your personal and business reputation. Early intervention can often negate the need for criminal proceedings, ensuring your reputation remains intact. Our aim at GQS Solicitors is to minimise the adverse effects that fraud allegations can impose.
What is fraud?
Fraud is a criminal offence involving deliberate dishonesty for gain, often financially. There are many different types of fraud, ranging from small cases to ‘serious fraud’. Serious fraud cases involve more complex and high-level activity, resulting in significant financial losses for victims. Some of the most common types of fraud include:
- Mortgage fraud – providing mortgage lenders with incorrect personal information
- Credit card fraud – using a stolen credit card to make unauthorised purchases
- Corporate fraud – unethical actions committed by a business or employee
- Money laundering – disguising the origins of large sums of money
- Investment fraud – encouraging investors to make purchases based on false information, also known as boiler room fraud
- Internet fraud – obtaining someone’s sensitive details online for financial gain
- Tax evasion – deliberately avoiding tax payments
- Health and safety fraud – forged health and safety documents or dishonesty regarding health and safety qualifications
The Fraud Act 2006, makes it much easier for a range of agencies and regulatory bodies to prosecute businesses and individuals for potentially fraudulent activity. Some of the most renowned agencies include:
- The Serious Fraud Office (SFO)
- The Crown Prosecution Service (CPO)
- Health and Safety Executive (HSE)
- Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC)
- Financial Conduct Authority (FCA)
We are accustomed to negotiating with agencies such as the SFO, thoroughly assessing their investigations and conduct, which can lead to the case being dropped altogether.
Fraud investigations can be very drawn out, sometimes spanning several years. The potentially extensive process is why it’s critical to act fast as early advice could significantly reduce time and stress.
Being investigated for fraud is an incredibly daunting experience, particularly when faced with the prospect of a jail sentence. Fraud sentencing can vary greatly depending on the nature of the case, the individual’s role in the crime and the level of harm caused. Fraud sentencing guidelines are often categorised into the following:
- Confidence fraud – the intention to make money from a victim
- Making or supplying articles – creating fake documents, computer software etc. to manipulate victims
- Banking insurance and credit fraud – providing false information to make fraudulent claims and payments
- Benefit fraud – The act of making false benefit claims
- Revenue fraud – tax related fraud
Each of these fraud categories carries different sentencing guidelines. Maximum sentencing for large scale fraud cases tends to be ten years imprisonment, with less financially impactful cases standing at around four years.
During fraud sentencing, a judge will thoroughly assess all evidence which has been presented, observing aspects such as:
- Motivations for the crime
- Planning of the crime
- How much money was involved
- Impact on victims
As a result, it’s imperative to have an experienced fraud solicitor on your side when facing fraud charges to achieve the best possible outcome for your case. From police station interviews to court proceeding, GQS Solicitors are here to support and advise you through every step of the process.
Why GQS Solicitors?
GQS Solicitors is recognised by the Legal 500 and Chambers and Partners and understands that fraud cases can be some of the most complex to defend. Therefore, it’s crucial to ensure that you appoint fraud solicitors with a widespread knowledge of fraud law and business crime. GQS Solicitors have extensive experience in all aspects of fraud law including serious fraud, money laundering, proceeds of crime, VAT fraud and tax fraud. As white-collar crime specialists, we have an established track record of notable, high profile fraud cases.
We recognise that every fraud case is different and requires a unique approach. The complexities of each individual case are why we pride ourselves on delivering a bespoke service, tailored to your situation. From high-level serious fraud allegations to smaller mortgage fraud cases, you can rely on our experienced team of fraud solicitors to deliver a strong defence and accurate representation.
To learn more about our legal services, please do not hesitate to give us a call on 0121 733 7070. Alternatively, please use the contact form below.