Mail, Bank, and Wire Fraud in Arizona: What You Need to Know About 18 USC 1341 and Other Statutes 

According to United States Code 18 USC 1341, 18 USC 1343, and 18 USC 1344, federal bank, mail, and wire fraud is among the most general grounds for Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) charges.

You Have Rights and We’re Here to Help!

Click to Call (602) 536-7878

According to this set of USC statutes, the use of any mail, radio, television, Internet or its applications, such as social media or instant messaging, or landline telephones and cellular handsets used to make interstate phone calls, texts, or any other form of messaging (such as WhatsApp or Signal, for example) to pursue, advocate, progress, or promote fraudulent schemes are illegal and prohibited by United States law in addition to Arizona state law.

As part of a larger fraudulent scheme, mail, bank, and wire fraud are just a variety of implied acts that a prosecution would need to find a defendant guilty of a RICO violation. 

Interestingly, violations of this nature are distinctly unlike similar charges in that there is no requirement for “pleading of misrepresentation, reliance or injury stemming directly from the conduct at issue.”

For example, there need not be any specific injury, misrepresentation, or pleading done during fraudulent Internet messaging, wires, or communications via cellular handset or tablet.

The only thing the prosecution must be able to prove is that the communication — regardless of how it was transmitted — was done intentionally and/or knowingly, carrying out or otherwise progressing a reckless scheme.  

Top Rated Choice When Searching “Fraud Defense Lawyer Near Me”

We Are Here To Listen. Schedule a Free Consultation Today & Speak with an Experienced Fraud Defense Lawyer Now.

How The 18 USC Statutes Apply to Arizona 

No matter where you reside in Arizona — or where the alleged bank, mail, or wire fraud occurred in Arizona — under 18 USC 1341, 1343, and 1346, the Government must be able to show that:  

  • There was a scheme, strategy, or tactic in place to illegally procure either cash, other monies, or assets 
  • That either or both interstate wires and/or mail (United States Post Office mail) were utilized to commit said scheme(s) 
  • There was definitive intent to deprive the rightful owner of his/her/its money, assets, or other property by fraud via planning, cooperating, or otherwise abetting the said scheme. 


What is the Difference Between Mail Fraud and Wire Fraud?  

The critical difference between mail fraud and wire fraud, according to 18 USC 1341, 1343, and 1346 is that to prove mail fraud, the prosecution must only show that the defendant is guilty of having used the United States Postal Service (USPS) to mail items or receive mailed items to further or help to “move along” any fraudulent scheme.  

  • Importantly, a defendant cannot be found guilty of mail fraud if s/he used any other mail carrier not owned or operated by the government.
  • Examples that would not work for the prosecution in court might include DHL, UPS, FedEx, etc.  

On the other hand, to prove wire fraud, the prosecution must show proof that the communication occurred either internationally or on an interstate basis using communication devices.

Some examples are; television, Internet, radio, or cellular handset applications, including WhatsApp, Signal, and Wickr, to name a few. 

charged with fraud

Potential Penalties and Sentencing for Mail and Wire Fraud  

In years past, sentencing guidelines for all white-collar crimes — of which mail and wire fraud are a part — were much more severe. Most came with mandatory minimums due to the severity of many of these crimes we refer to today as RICO violations.  

However, today, based on the 2005 Supreme Court decision in U.S. v. Booker, the rules that outline the penalties and sentencing have changed quite dramatically, making the sentencing guidelines more or less consultative while giving the judges in these cases the ability to use their discernment, drawing on previous issues that have come before them to determine sentencing in each unique case. 

The Numerical Offense Level Standard for Sentencing Mail and Wire Fraud in Arizona and at the Federal Level  

According to the newest sentencing guidelines outlined in 18 USC 3553(a), the most recently devised United States Federal sentencing guidelines, a numerical system is used to determine everything from  

  • The severity of the crime 
  • What, if any, prior criminal record the defendant(s) have 
  • The number of people or other entities who became victims as a result of the mail or wire fraud 
  • How much money was lost by the victim(s)? 
  • Whether or not the victim(s) were charitable organizations or nonprofits 
  • Whether or not there was a violation of security law 
  • Whether or not mass mailing was used 
  • Whether or not the defendant was misrepresenting him or herself as a member of a government agency 

Each of these different infractions add to the numerical value of the sentencing, ranging from Level One, which is the lowest and least severe, to Level Forty-Three, which is the highest, representing the most egregious mail and wire fraud cases, and results in a life sentence.

Other items that add to the different levels have to do with which entities were used to commit the crime(s); for example, the if the mail or wire fraud were executed through the Federal Bank, the defendant, in that case, would automatically start at a score of 7, which would then be built upon based on whichever items in the long list above applied in that specific case. 

In the state of Arizona, the judge works hard to keep sentencing down but fair by looking at things like a defendant’s prior record, checking in on how s/he is doing with his or her probation officer, and reviewing what the prosecution has to say in its Sentencing Memorandums.  

How Daniel Hutto Will Defend Your Mail or Wire Fraud Charge  

When it comes to defending mail and wire fraud charges in Arizona, several different defense types can absolutely result in deeply reduced or even dismissed charges.

Things such as proving that your communication (or communication coming to you) was not related to any scheme, proving that you never participated in the communication (something the Government must be able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt), and finally, that the communication itself — if it is proven to have been sent or received — did not cause any harm or injury to the alleged victim or anyone else are all excellent starting points depending on the unique circumstances of your case.  

At the Law Office of Daniel Hutto, we want you to know you have options regarding your representation and defense. We’ll listen to your story, give you some of our feedback, and build a winning defense to defend you aggressively in court, just as we have for countless others.

Call our caring and knowledgeable legal team today to get started with your no-cost legal consultation by dialing 602-941-4120

Schedule Your Free Consultation

    Some of Our Real Client Reviews

    Daniel Hutto and his team are fantastic. I was in a hard situation when living in Arizona and Daniel worked non stop to gain the best results possible. I appreciate the constant communication and knowing he truly had my best interests and outcome at heart. Thank You Again Daniel. I have already recommended him to anyone looking for legal defense.
    ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Michael O. (Review From Yelp)
    Our family was going through and unfortunate event when we needed an assistance of a lawyer. I contacted Mr Hutto. He was very professional and easy to work with. Never had any issues of reaching him out, he would return my call in a very timely manner. I was truly impressed. I recommended him to a number of my friends and family, he was very helpful. If you needed a lawyer, he is the one. Thank you Mr Hutto for your help.
    ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Lara B. (Review From Yelp)
    Daniel and Shannon are some of the best lawyers out here. I came to them with a very complex and all over the place case. I have called a few other lawyers prior to retaining Daniel and those offices pretty much turned me away. As soon as I told Daniel about my case they acted quickly to assist and made such movement that took me months to do on my own. I truly felt that Shannon and Daniel took my case to heart and their passion about it was amazing. Thank you so much for your help and guidance. If anyone is looking for aggressive but very passionate lawyers you need to stop playing and retain the office of Daniel hutto..
    ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Anthony Wilson (Review from Google)
    If I could rate this law office 100 stars I would. Daniel and his staff went above and beyond what they needed to do to help me with my case. They did it with the utmost professionalism and respect. I couldn't have asked for a better law office to represent me. I would highly recommend to anyone who needed an attorney.
    ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Taylor Cochran (Review from Google)
    Tried and proven! I highly recommend Daniel and his team for any international matters that you may need. Daniel is an AMAZING attorney and his professional service was simply awesome. Caring and a very knowledgeable attorney who keeps you involved during the entire process. He gave prompt replies, incredible legal knowledge, displayed a high level of professionalism, clear thorough advice and completed research to find the best winningest option for you! We won...Simply the BEST from start to finish!!
    ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Philippa A. (Review from Avvo)
    In what has been the most stressful situation of my entire life, Daniel was there to assist me and get me out of this situation. I honestly don’t know what I would have done without him. He was very attentive to what I wanted, very prompt with his responses. And able to answer all my questions no matter how ridiculous they were. If you need a family lawyer, I highly recommend him. I’m so very grateful.
    ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Anonymous (Review from Avvo)
    Daniel saved my record by getting both DUI charges dropped. He truly connected with me and acted as if the case was happening to him. Daniel fights hard and aggressively in court by using real facts and laws. He made me feel secure and taken care of through his communication, diligence and patience to find every little detail and angle of my case. I felt as if we were a team and in this together. He's talented beyond his knowledge of the court system and laws. He's quick on his toes. I really could not have found a better lawyer. I am forever grateful for his thorough effort and determination to find success. Thank you Daniel!!!
    ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Anonymous (Review from Avvo)