In essence, a person will be guilty of a fraud if they have “applied” the property of another person for their own benefit in a dishonest way. In the context of a fraud charge, the term ”applied” means the taking or using of another person’s property for their own purposes. This must have been done both intentionally and dishonestly.
“Property” has a wide definition and not only includes physical property but also everything animate or inanimate that is capable of being the subject of ownership such as energy, credit, stocks, animals, and plants.
Fraud cases can range from the simplest of matters to very complex transactions involving multi-national corporations and foreign currency trading. Often times the prosecution engage the services of a forensic accountant to prepare reports detailing transactions said to have constituted the fraud. It may be necessary, as part of your legal defence, to engage an independent forensic accountant to prepare a report disputing or qualifying the prosecution expert’s opinion.
In fraud cases, one of the most significant factors when the court comes to decide sentence is the “quantum” or value of the fraud. See our brochure 'Pleading Guilty' for additional considerations when preparing and conducting pleas of guilty in fraud matters.