Credit Card or Debit Card Crimes

It is illegal for an individual to make (or cause to be made) any false statement in writing concerning the identity of an individual in order to be issued a credit card when the individual:

  • knows the statement is false; and
  • intends that the false statement is relied upon.

If a person violates this law, they may be charged with misdemeanor fraud for obtaining a credit card that is not the property of the individual who is the card holder. This offense is punishable by up to 18 months in prison and/or a fine of up to $500. Section 8-203(b).

Credit and debit card abuse charges typically stem from allegations of an individual stealing a credit or debit card, the card’s numbers and information, using someone’s credit or debit card without the permission of the cardholder, or using someone else’s credit or debit card numbers and information without permission of the cardholder.

Accepting a gift or benefit from someone who has used a stolen credit or debit card can also lead to criminal charges. In order to fight these serious criminal accusations, it is in one’s best interest to retain legal counsel.


Maryland Theft by Credit Card Lawyer

If you are facing criminal accusations for credit or debit card crimes in Baltimore, Arbutus, Catonsville, or Annapolis, Maryland,  it is important that you contact the lawyers of James E. Crawford, Jr. & Associates as soon as possible.

Our lawyers have over 18 years representing clients charged with credit and debit theft charges throughout the State of Maryland.

Call James E. Crawford, Jr. & Associates at 443-709-9999 as soon as possible to speak with an experienced criminal defense lawyer today.


Maryland Credit Card Theft

Under Maryland Criminal Law Code § 8-204, a person may not take a credit or debit card from another, or from the possession, custody, or control of another without the consent of the cardholder. They also may not use or receive the credit or debit card with the intent to use, sell, or transfer it to another who is not the issuer or the cardholder if they know that the credit or debit card has been taken without consent from the cardholder.

A person may also not buy or sell credit cards unless they are the issuer, or buy a credit card from a person, other than the issuer. A person other than the issuer may not receive a credit card that the person knows was taken or retained under the following circumstances:

  • credit card theft;
  • a violation of § 8­203 which prohibits a person from making a false statement about the identity of the person who is entitled to the issuance of a card, or of another in order to be issued a credit or debit card); or
  • a violation of selling or buying a credit card from someone other than the issuer.

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Maryland Credit Card Fraud

Credit card theft and credit card fraud are very closely tied together. Section 8-207 of the Maryland Criminal Law Code discusses credit card fraud, honoring stolen or counterfeit credit cards, and false representation of an issuer of a card.
Section 8-207 states that if a person is authorized by an issuer to furnish money, goods, services, or anything of value on presentation of a credit card by the cardholder, the person or an agent or employee of the person may not, with the intent to defraud the issuer or cardholder. They also may not furnish money, goods, services, or anything of value on presentation of the following:

  • a credit card obtained or retained in violation of § 8-204 or § 8-205 of this subtitle;
  • a credit card that the person knows is counterfeit; or
  • fail to furnish money, goods, services, or anything of value that the person represents in writing to the issuer that the person has furnished.

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Penalties Under Maryland Statute § 8-204

A person who violates this section may be charged with a misdemeanor subject to the following:

  • imprisonment not exceeding 18 months; and/or
  • a fine of no more than $500.

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§ 8-206 Obtaining Property by Counterfeiting, Theft, or Misrepresentation

Obtaining property by counterfeiting, theft, or misrepresentation has serious penalties if someone is convicted. It is illegal for any individual to:

  • defraud others with the intent to do so;
  • for the purpose of acquiring money, services, goods, or anything of value;
  • to use a counterfeit or stolen credit card (regardless of whether the individual created the counterfeit card themselves, or merely knows that the card is counterfeit).

It is also illegal for any individual to:

  • defraud others with the intent to do so;
  • for the purpose of acquiring money, services, goods, or anything of value;
  • by representing that the person is the holder of a credit card, without consent from the cardholder, or by representing that the person is the holder of a credit card that has not, in fact, been issued.

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Theft by Card – Additional Resources

§8–204. Visit the website of the General Assembly of Maryland to see Section 8 of the criminal code that discusses credit card crime offenses in the state.


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James E. Crawford, Jr. & Associates | Baltimore County Theft by Card Attorney

The attorneys at James E. Crawford, Jr. & Associates have handled theft cases in the State of Maryland for many years. Our attorneys have over 18 years of combined experience representing clients.

With two offices conveniently located in Catonsville and Arbutus, Maryland, we fight every step for your rights. We serve clients in Baltimore County, Maryland, and in the surrounding areas of Anne Arundel County, Howard County, Carroll County, Montgomery County, Harford County, and Kent County.

Call James E. Crawford, Jr. & Associates at 443-709-9999 to schedule a no obligation consultation.