The investigation, prosecution and defense of internet crimes involves a great deal of expertise in understanding the technologies utilized to ascertain the alleged criminal activity, its scope and the participants involved. Many issues including those involving jurisdiction and venue as well as criminal intent or lack thereof and the methods of acquiring evidence are routinely involved in these cases.
Victor Knapp, Esq., has worked closely with trained forensic and computer specialists to successfully represent several persons accused or suspected of committing internet crimes throughout his legal career. Victor Knapp, Esq. stands by you throughout the entire criminal process including during the investigatory, arraignment, conference, Grand Jury, Pre-trial suppression, trial and post-conviction stages.
Internet Crimes under the CFAA
The Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) is a federal law that criminalizes a broad array of behavior. Conviction under the CFAA can result in extremely harsh punishments. The CFAA has been used to address many bad acts online including:
- Cyber bullying on social media sites like Facebook and Myspace
- Virus, Trojan and work authors
- Removal of functionality from the PlayStation 3 video game console by Sony
- Attempts to hack the PlayStation 3 game console by hacker Geohot
- Online spying by the Lower Merion school district in Pennsylvania
- Bradley Manning’s disclosure of government documents
- Disgruntled former employees who delete or misappropriate information or steal trade secrets
- An individual who exploited a programming error in a poker machine
- A company who continued to “scrape” Craigslist listings despite a block on their access by Craigslist
While the reach of the CFAA is broad, the CFAA makes it illegal to access certain computers without authorization or by exceeding your permitted authorization. Government computers and computers containing protected government information are covered by this provision. Furthermore, the CFAA criminalizes the use of computers in fraudulent schemes. Additionally the CFAA criminalizes trafficking in passwords or other information that would allow another person to access the machine without authorization.
Defending you Against Numerous Cyber Crime Charges
A broad array of behaviors that are illegal in the real world are also illegal online. If you have been charged with an online crime Victor Knapp, Esq. can defend your from many charges including:
- Harassment – Aside from potentially being actionable under the CFAA, some states have passed their own laws which prohibit harassment by computer. These states include Arizona, Connecticut, Michigan and Virginia.
- Computer fraud — Computer and internet fraud can be pursued through the CFAA, wire fraud statutes or state statutes.
- Intellectual property theft — Under 17 U.S.C. § 506 and 18 U.S.C. § 2319 a criminal action for copyright infringement can be brought. Other serious IP crimes include trafficking in counterfeit trademarks or service marks, theft of commercial trade secrets, and DMCA violations for circumventing DRM or creating and distributing a device that allows circumvention of DRM.
- Sex Crimes – Sexual harassment is also illegal online. Further child enticement where an adult attempts to solicit sex acts from a child through fraud, deceit or any means is also illegal. Finally
- Drug trafficking – Online drug market places like Silk Road have entered the national consciousness in recent years. If you are accused of purchasing or selling drugs online we can defend you. Additionally if you are charged with money laundering or other criminal activity related to the sale of drugs, we can also work to defend you.
Victor Knapp, Esq. has been in private practice as a criminal defense attorney since 1981, and has offices directly across the street from the Criminal Courthouse in Kew Gardens, New York. His practice is not limited to Queens County and he is available 24/7 for emergencies as well as for all state cases on Long Island, Brooklyn, Bronx, Manhattan and Westchester/ upstate New York and for federal cases nationwide.
Call 718-233-3823 or contact us online for a confidential case evaluation.