Greenwich Computer Crimes Lawyer
An experienced Greenwich computer crimes lawyer could stand by your side through every stage of your criminal prosecution, ensuring you understand your options and legal rights at every turn. No matter whether you are facing misdemeanor or felony charges, assistance from a criminal defense attorney could greatly increase your odds of a positive case resolution.
How Does State Law Define “Computer Crimes?”
Connecticut General Statutes §53a-251 establishes five specific actions that qualify as “computer crimes,” all of which are distinct from crimes like embezzlement, fraud, and distribution of child pornography that often involve computers. These actions include:
- Physically destroying computer equipment without authorization
- Stealing computer services
- Interrupting or degrading computer services for other users
- Misusing information stored in a computer system
- Accessing a computer system while knowingly lacking the authorization to do so
Also, C.G.S. §53a-262 uniquely criminalizes the act of extorting someone through the use of ransomware or any other malicious computer code. This particular offense is a class E felony, meaning that a conviction could lead to maximum sanctions of three years in prison and $3,500 in fines.
Importantly, a person does not necessarily have to intentionally or knowingly cause harm to be charged with a computer crime. For example, a person who recklessly transfers a virus to a closed computer system could potentially be charged with a computer crime, just as they would have been if they had intended to infect that system. During a private consultation, a Greenwich computer crimes attorney could go over the specific ways in which state courts often interpret these statutes and explain how that might impact a particular case.
What Are The Various Degrees of Computer Crimes in Greenwich?
C.G.S. §§53a-252 through 53a-256 define the discrete degrees of computer crimes, with fifth-degree computer crimes being the least serious and first-degree computer crimes being the most serious. The classification of a computer crime—and therefore the severity of potential punishments upon conviction—depends on the amount of damage done to computer services and/or property in financial terms.
Fifth-degree computer crimes result in less than $500 of total damage, and fourth-degree computer crimes result in more than $500 but less than $1,000 worth of damage. These offenses are both misdemeanors, punishable respectively by up to six months in jail and a $1,000 fine, and a maximum of a year in jail and a $2,000 fine.
Conversely, computer crimes in the third, second, and first degrees are respectively class D, class C, and class B felonies, depending on whether the total damage caused exceeded $1,000, $5,000, or $10,000 in total value. Since convictions for these offenses could result in mandatory minimum prison sentences and—for a first-degree offense—a maximum of 20 years of imprisonment and a $15,000 fine, representation from a computer crimes lawyer in Greenwich may be especially crucial for anyone dealing with allegations of this severity.
A Greenwich Computer Crimes Attorney Could Help
If you are facing charges, a Greenwich computer crimes lawyer could help you fight your case. Schedule a consultation today to learn about how a local attorney could help. The lawyers at Mark Sherman Law have over 300 5-star reviews on Avvo.com and on Google and are ready to take your call 24/7.