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Practice Areas

Offering a False Instrument for Filing

Offering a False Instrument for Filing concerns written instruments filed with a public office. For example: filing a false / padded timesheet with an employer that is a public agency (i.e. the City of New York).

State Penalties for Offering a False Instrument for Filing:

Offering a False Instrument for Filing in the First Degree is a class E felony punishable by up to four years in prison. Offering a False Instrument for Filing in the Second Degree is a class A misdemeanor and punishable by up to one year in jail.

When is the best time to act?:

Offering a False Instrument for Filing is a serious charge and can impact a person’s liberty, career, and future life choices. Anyone charged with this crime must contact an attorney specializing in white-collar crimes immediately.

High Profile Cases of Offering a False Instrument for Filing:

On February 2014, Craig Rothfeld, Michael Romano, and Gregory Maleski were indicted for operating a fraudulent scheme through the now-defunct WJB Capital Group, a Wall Street securities broker-dealer. They were accused of defrauding around 15 investors out of over $11 million and faced, among other charges, Offering a False Instrument for Filing in the First Degree.

Types of Offering a False Instrument for Filing Charges:

Offering a False Instrument for Filing in the First Degree requires proof of intent to defraud. Offering a False Instrument for Filing in the Second Degree does not.

Related Crimes:

Grand Larceny, Falsifying Business Records, Securities Fraud, Scheme to Defraud, Criminal Tax Fraud

Penalties and Punishment:

Offering a False Instrument for Filing in the First Degree is punishable by up to four years in prison. Offering a False Instrument for Filing in the Second Degree is punishable by up to one year in jail.

Successful Defenses:

Lack of intent to defraud will not exculpate a person completely, but can result in a lesser charge and punishment. If the entity involved is not public, then the charge of Offering a False Instrument for Filing can’t apply. Infancy (for people under sixteen) and mental disease / defect are also feasible defenses.

Difference between New York and Federal R.I.C.O. statutes:

R.I.C.O requires evidence of a criminal “enterprise” for a crime to be connected with racketeering. An example of Offering a False Instrument for Filing in a R.I.C.O. case would be an organization that brings in illegal aliens and files false details regarding their birthplace, etc. New York doesn’t require such evidence of enterprise activity. Those found guilty of racketeering can be fined up to $25,000 and/or sentenced to 20 years in prison per count. R.I.C.O. requires convicted racketeers to forfeit all their illegal gains, something that New York courts do not impose. And unlike New York law, R.I.C.O permits a racketeering victim to file a civil lawsuit for up to treble damages, plus costs and attorney fees.