In today’s financial climate, bank fraud is becoming increasingly commonplace. Although there are many ways to perform bank fraud, it can also be tied to rate fixing, Libor related transactions or credit card fraud. With bank regulators and prosecuting agencies expected to justify their status as part of the financial landscape, it’s common for prosecutors to find scapegoats. These are typically traders working in banking and other financial institutions.

Other bank fraud cases involve bank account fraud, cheque fraud, false accounting and cybercrime bank fraud, amongst others.

If you or somebody you know is being accused of bank fraud, it can be a very worrying time. You’ll wonder what the outcome might be. You’ll be questioning whether your name will be tarnished, and your career path spoilt. You’ll also want to know whether you may be imprisoned.

It’s understandable to feel worried and stressed. You may have a family that you need to provide for or a mortgage that needs to be maintained. Will your family have the income to be able to maintain the lifestyle that they will have become accustomed to?

If you find yourself being part of an investigation into bank fraud, it’s critical that you take the advice of a competent and experienced bank fraud solicitor. You’ll receive legal guidance on what you need to do to achieve the best outcome. If you’ve been requested to attend the police station for an interview, under no circumstances must you attend without taking an expert fraud lawyer with you.

As soon as you find out that you’re being investigated or are being charged with this crime, it’s vital that you seek competent legal advice from experienced fraud solicitors. By selecting a lawyer with experience and expertise in fraud cases, you may even be able to get your case dismissed before it progresses to the court stage.

Have you been charged with or arrested for bank fraud?   

Being charged or arrested in connection with a bank fraud case can be very frightening.  It’s essential that you engage the legal services of a fraud solicitor. You’ll no doubt be feeling very nervous, stressed and anxious and about what might happen next.

You may not even have had any involvement in the situation at hand, but you’re being accused of playing a role. Perhaps the role you’re being accused of is larger than the one that you did play. By attending to this situation immediately, you will improve your chances of getting your name cleared and securing the best possible outcome.

You’ll typically be invited to an interview at the police station. Under no circumstances must you attend this interview without having first spoken with a legal professional. The lawyer should also attend the meeting with you so that they can ask additional questions about what evidence the police have against you.

We’ve put together several questions that clients involved in a bank fraud case typically ask. We aim to provide you with the best legal guidance and support to help you through this. If you have a question, and it’s not answered here, please contact us and we will do what we can to provide you with an answer.

What type of actions are considered bank fraud?

Here are some examples of the type of bank fraud cases that may have led to the situation in hand.

  • Bank account fraud – for instance, somebody may gain access to a person’s account and transfer money to a bank account belonging to them or another person. The bank may not be supportive of what has happened, and the money is not returned to the bank account owner.
  • Currency rate fixing – for example, banks were charged with manipulating and fixing currency rates in 2015. They were charged with fines of over £1 billion and you may be accused of being involved in a currency rate fixing case either historically or taking place now.
  • Bank card fraud – an example of this might be when a person’s bank card is used to secure money that doesn’t belong to the user. The bank card is typically stolen and used to cash a cheque or to gain access to funds that do not belong to the user.
  • Online bank fraud  – this is typically unauthorised use of a bank account by a third party or when a scam dupes buyers.

These are just a few examples of bank fraud; there are several others. If you would like to know more about crimes that are categorised as bank fraud, you can always contact us for more information.

What happens in a bank fraud investigation?

When a bank fraud investigation takes place, the initial steps taken will be to establish who is responsible for the crime and how to recover the missing funds.

It’s a worrying time for whoever is involved in an investigation of this nature. It’s normal to feel stressed and even suffer from sleepless nights, worrying about what the outcome might be. Whether what you’ve been involved in is on a small scale or it involves millions of pounds, it’s essential to take the first steps to protect yourself and mitigate the outcome.

Each bank fraud case is unique and has its own circumstances. No matter what your situation is, it’s critical that you speak with an experienced bank fraud solicitor.

It’s crucial that a defence strategy is built as quickly as possible. You will also then have somebody to guide you and support you during the investigation process.

In some cases, a good bank fraud lawyer may even be able to get your case dismissed long before the first court date.

You may have been falsely accused of bank fraud

Often our clients are accused of something that they didn’t do, and this could be true in your case.  In some cases, you may even have the same name as somebody, or perhaps they have stolen your identity to use it in bank fraud.  In other cases, your bank account may have been used for fraudulent financial transactions, and you were unaware of this until now. If this is in line with your situation, hiring a competent bank fraud solicitor is a must.

Without a lawyer, you cannot find out more until the interview

If you’ve been invited to attend the police station for an interview, we strongly advise you not to attend without taking an experienced bank fraud lawyer with you. The police may tout the interview as being ‘a chat to understand what happened’ or to ‘hear about your side of the story’. These are ways to get you into the police station for a recorded interview that may be used as evidence against you in the court.

The primary goal of the police is to secure convictions and they have extensive training in how to do so. Using underhand tactics is a technique used on people who don’t know that it’s critical to engage a competent defence lawyer for any communication that takes place between you and the police in an investigation. The police use this weakness in your defence as a way to manipulate the outcome.

Instruct a legal professional as soon as possible

One of the main advantages of engaging the services of a competent bank fraud lawyer is that they will advise you on what you should and shouldn’t be saying during the police interview. They will be able to support you both legally and practically.

Police can use the most probing of questioning techniques during their interviews. Sometimes they will put traps in place to trip you up. They won’t disclose all evidence against you so that you don’t know what they know and what they don’t.

The benefit of engaging a lawyer at this stage is that they can ask the police if they have further evidence that has not been disclosed. The lawyer can also gain access to the reasons why you have been detained or charged, and can then use that to begin crafting a strong defence for you before the investigation progresses to the court stage.

What should you do if you get arrested or charged with bank fraud?

The law in the UK is in a constant state of flux and only professional defence lawyers can stay on top of them. With bank fraud being an area of complex law, it’s recommended that you engage a legal professional to support you. Of course, you’re not obligated to do so but you’ll be putting your future at risk if you don’t.

Hiring a bank fraud solicitor will ensure that you have access to their experience and knowledge of cases just like yours. They will know if it’s possible to get your case dismissed or how they can secure you the best possible outcome.

You’ll enjoy the peace of mind that you don’t currently have. It’s essential to make contact with a competent and skilled defence lawyer as fast as possible so that they can start crafting your defence immediately.

Can the police search my home?

The police will more than likely want to search your home. This process will begin when they request a search warrant from a judge or a magistrate. The search warrant will give them access to not only your home but also your telephone records, communications, bank statements, money transfers and they will also want to inspect and understand the source of any unexplained assets.

As part of their investigation, the police will want to take a good look at your connections, friends and family and may even put them under surveillance. They will also examine your social media accounts.

Could you go to prison for bank fraud?

Bank fraud is considered a serious offence and therefore punishment is harsh. You’ll normally be given a prison sentence and may also be required to pay a large fine.

Of course, this time can be very worrying for both yourself and your family. By engaging a competent bank fraud lawyer, you’ll have the support and advice of a professional to guide you. It’s possible that you could also have a restraint order applied to your bank account and other assets until the police and other agencies have completed their investigation. At that time there may also be a confiscation order used to reclaim the funds of those that have been defrauded.

It’s critical that you engage a strong fraud solicitor who handles bank fraud cases regularly.

What mitigating factors may be considered in sentencing?

Bank fraud considers several factors when sentencing is undertaken. The judge will consider whether you were involved with others in a conspiracy to defraud and how much loss and deceit took place. As a considerably serious crime, the court will want to give you a sentence that deters you and others from getting involved in a crime of this nature again.

What type of sentence could you get for bank fraud?

A bank fraud case that goes to court and results in a conviction will typically get a prison sentence of four or five years, and more for serious cases.

Does a conviction for bank fraud go on your criminal record?

If your bank fraud case reaches court and you are convicted as being guilty, your conviction will be noted on your CRB / police record. The length of the endorsement will depend on the type and nature of the sentence imposed.

How Can Stuart Miller Solicitors Help?

The fraud lawyers at Stuart Miller have defended those accused of the bank fraud at all levels.  No matter what role you played in a bank fraud case, Stuart Miller Solicitors have substantial expertise in understanding your case, your circumstances and the way in which the prosecution will seek to prosecute you.

Owing to daily handling of bank fraud cases, our fraud solicitors have the very best barristers and QCs to choose from. We can instruct international agents to make enquiries abroad; we can engage financial experts to analyse the trail of funds, we can work with telephony experts and computer evidence evaluation experts to build your defence case.

Our reputation is already very positive but we at Stuart Miller Solicitors also rely on past notable cases to speak of our remarkable abilities in this field.

When should you discuss your case with an expert bank fraud solicitor?

In any legal case, early action is pivotal to increasing the chances of success. In cases of this nature, you will require specialist advice at every step. If you have been served with a restraint order, you have had cash seized or your money confiscated; rest assured our fraud lawyers will advise you on all aspects of the fraud investigation or prosecution.

Whether you are facing allegations of Fraud by false representation, fraud by failing to Disclose information, making or supplying articles for use in fraud or on the larger end of the spectrum, for conspiracy to defraud or money laundering; please contact us and ask to speak to our fraud solicitors.

Would you like to discuss your case before instructing us?

Please contact our bank fraud solicitors to arrange your meeting, whether face to face, online or by telephone. If you prefer, you can also send us a WhatsApp message using the link on this page.

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