A man from Baltimore, Maryland, with a prior conviction for identity theft has pled guilty to the same offense five years later. The man was on trial for theft charges but he elected to plead guilty after three days of a trial. The man could receive possible penalties of up to 38 years in prison.
Authorities estimate the personal losses to five victims at approximately $70,000. The thefts and attempted thefts included electronics and designer merchandise including Gucci bags and Hermes sweaters. The man was sentenced to just over five years in federal prison because of theft convictions in 2007.
While an accusation for any crime is serious, a second and repeat offense after a first conviction for the same type of crime often carries far-reaching consequences for the person who is accused. The person could face enhanced court fees, fines and restitution along with a longer prison sentence. While a criminal defense attorney tries to fight for the rights of defendants in every case, the legal ramifications of a strong defense become even more important for subsequent allegations of criminal conduct.
Law enforcement and prosecutors are renewing their efforts in fighting identity theft. Victims are making their voices heard and demanding restitution when they have had their identity stolen and property purchased in their name. A lawyer will discuss the case with prosecutors, review police and court reports and attempt to ensure that a person accused of identity theft is treated fairly throughout the court process.
Source: The Washington Post, “Guilty plea for Md. man in identity theft case,” Nov. 6, 2012