Weston Computer Crimes Lawyer
If you are facing charges for computer crimes, an attorney can be of huge help. By working with an experienced Weston computer crimes lawyer, you could more effectively contest the allegations against you and pursue a case outcome that preserves your future prospects.
What Constitutes a “Computer Crime?”
According to Connecticut General Statutes §53a-251, there are five different actions that could qualify specifically as a “computer crime” in Weston. First, any person who accesses a computer system or causes it to be accessed without permission or authorization has committed a computer crime in Connecticut. Likewise, anyone who steals computer services or accesses a computer system with the intention of stealing computer services may be charged under this statute.
The third form of computer crime defined under state law occurs when someone intentionally and without authorization causes a computer service to be degraded or disrupted. Additionally, anyone who “misuses” computer system information by disclosing, displaying, altering, tampering with, deleting, intercepting, or retaining that data without authorization. Finally, a person who physically tampers with, steals, conceals, or damages computer system equipment or hardware may be charged with a computer crime.
It should be noted that C.G.S. §53a-262 defines the use of ransomware within a computer system to engage in extortion of a system user as a distinct criminal offense separate from the standard “computer crime” statute. A Weston cybercrimes attorney could help an individual accused of any action listed above construct a strong defense strategy for their unique case.
Is a Computer Crime Charge a Felony or Misdemeanor Offense?
Instead of punishing computer crimes based on the specific action taken, Connecticut state courts sentence defendants convicted of this offense based on the total financial value of the harm their action caused to computer systems, services, property, and/or users. To that end, C.G.S. §§53a-252 through 53a-256 define five degrees of “computer crime” as follows:
- Computer crime in the fifth degree – a class B misdemeanor involving $500 worth of damage or less
- Computer crime in the fourth degree – a class A misdemeanor involving between $500 and $1,000 worth of damage
- Computer crime in the third degree – a class D felony involving between $1,000 and $5,000 worth of damage, or involving conduct that puts another person at risk of serious physical harm
- Computer crime in the second degree – a class C felony involving between $5,000 and $10,000 worth of damage
- Computer crime in the first degree – a class B felony involving more than $10,000 worth of damage
Depending on the degree of offense a defendant finds themselves accused of, they could face anywhere from six months in jail and a $1,000 fine at most for a fifth-degree conviction, to a prison term of between one and 20 years plus a $15,000 fine. As a computer crimes lawyer in Weston could explain further, C.G.S. §53a-257 also allows for courts to impose alternative fines of up to twice the financial value a convicted defendant derived from their computer crime.
Speak with a Weston Computer Crimes Attorney Today
A Weston computer crimes lawyer, like those at Mark Sherman Law, could explain your options and possible defense strategies during an initial consultation. You can click here to go over to Avvo.com and read why over three hundred prior clients have given us 5-stars. Schedule yours by calling today.