If you are looking for a forgery defense lawyer in Chicago or Illinois Fenbert Law is on your side. Despite the decline in the use of checks, men and women continue to be charged with forgery relating to bad checks. In Illinois, Forgery (720 ILCS 5/17-3 (a)) provides:
A person commits forgery when, with intent to defraud, he or she knowingly:
(1) makes a false document or alters any document to make it false and that document is apparently capable of defrauding another; (2) issues or delivers such document knowing it to have been thus made or altered; (3) possesses, with intent to issue or deliver, any such document knowing it to have been thus made or altered;(4) unlawfully uses the digital signature, as defined in the Financial Institutions Electronic Documents and Digital Signature Act, of another; or (5) unlawfully uses the signature device of another to create an electronic signature of that other person, as those terms are defined in the Electronic Commerce Security Act.
Forgery can be charged as a Class A Misdemeanor, a Class 3 Felony or a Class 4 Felony depending on the facts and circumstances of the case.
An indictment for forgery may resemble: “the [inset name] feloniously and fraudulently uttered and passed to named person as true and genuine a false and forged bank check, knowing the check to be false and forged, with intent thereby to prejudice and defraud the named person.”
As in all criminal cases, the State of Illinois has the burden of proof. The state must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the accused knew that the check was forged, before a forgery conviction can stand. People v. Mager, App. 5 Dist.1976, 35 Ill.App.3d 306. For example, knowledge that the check was not authentic must clearly be proven in order to convict the defendant of forgery. Moreover, if a person is charged with “making a false check” and the person merely indorsed the check then the accused may assert that the his and/or her indorsement of the counterfeit check did not constitute “making” the check for the purpose of forgery. People v. Brown, 2013, 377 Ill.Dec. 1, 1 N.E.3d 888.
These are just some of the issues a defense attorney will consider when fighting forgery cases. If you are charged with forgery in Chicago, Cook County, Du Page County, Lake County, or Will County, call Richard at Fenbert & Associates, LLC at (630) 917-2051 or email [email protected].