Mail Fraud Defense Lawyers

If you are a government contractor seeking to avoid criminal liability for procurement or healthcare fraud, our federal mail fraud defense firm can help.

 Have you been accused of mail fraud under 18 USC 1341? 

The key to successfully defending a mail fraud case is to immediately assess what legal defenses you can assert. Legal defenses or showing that the prosecutor cannot prove elements of their charge is always a place to start. Remember that your goal in defending a criminal case is to deconstruct the prosecution’s case. It does not have to be completely torn apart. However, just enough to create reasonable doubt to a jury if the case had to go to trial. Our federal mail fraud defense lawyers can help.

Sometimes federal contractors face a tough break when an honest mistake is made or the facts to support the allegations are not true. In either case, the experience of going through a federal investigation or criminal trial can be traumatic and stressful.

What is mail fraud?

“There are two elements in mail fraud: (1) having devised or intending to devise a scheme to defraud (or to perform specified fraudulent acts), and (2) use of the mail to execute, or attempt to execute, the scheme (or specified fraudulent acts).” Schmuck v. United States, 489 U.S. 705, 721 n. 10 (1989); see also Pereira v. United States, 347 U.S. 1, 8 (1954) (“The elements of the offense of mail fraud under . . . §  1341 are (1) a scheme to defraud, and (2) the mailing of a letter, etc., for the purpose of executing the scheme.”).

In August 2023,  Two New York men were sentenced today for participating in a 12-year scheme to mail fraudulent prize notices that tricked elderly and vulnerable consumers into paying fees for falsely promised cash prizes.

Sean Novis, 53, and Gary Denkberg, 59, both of Long Island, were sentenced to 90 and 66 months in prison, respectively for mail fraud. The sentences were imposed by U.S. District Judge Joan M. Azrack, who also ordered Novis to forfeit $60 million and Denkberg to forfeit $19 million.

Federal mail fraud defense firm: At Watson & Associates, LLC, we are the types of mail fraud attorneys who specialize in representing federal government contractors and small businesses bidding on government contracts. We understand the complexities of federal regulations and the importance of protecting your reputation and livelihood.

Mail fraud in government contracting is when a contractor uses the U.S. Postal Service in any criminal attempt to acquire funds or things of value through a fraudulent scheme from the government. See 18 USC 1341. Whether the business succeeds or not is not the primary inquiry. At Watson & Associates, our federal mail fraud attorneys represent small businesses and large DOD contractors nationwide and overseas facing civil or criminal fraud penalties due to fraud against the federal government.

Nationwide Government Contractor Federal Mail Fraud Defense Lawyers

Are you a federal government contractor being investigated or charged with mail fraud statute under 18 USC 1341? Call our federal mail fraud defense attorneys and criminal defense attorneys to review your case and legal options.


Federal wire fraud defense firm:  Why Choose Watson & Associates, LLC for Government Contractor Federal Criminal Defense Cases? 

FEDERAL CRIMINAL CONTRACTOR DEFENSE ATTORNEYTheodore P. Watson, Esquire. Practice Group Lead. At Watson & Associates, with law offices in Colorado and Washington, DC, our top-rated criminal defense lawyers and federal mail fraud attorneys have experience working for federal government contracting agencies. We understand the nuts and bolts of the investigation and how the DOJ or even the SBA OIG develops a civil or criminal case against you.

A crucial aspect of our practice lies in the fact that many of our federal defense lawyers possess extensive experience as government contracting officials. We also understand how trial lawyers in federal agencies like the DOJ and the U.S. Attorney’s Office operate. Drawing on those valuable insights, our job is to deconstruct the government’s case and develop a legal defense that can create leverage in the event of litigation.

top washington dc and maryland. Wise Allen Attorney federal Criminal Defense and mail fraud FCPA fraud laawyerWise D. Allen, Esquire , Counsel, is a former Veteran Lieutenant Commander Judge Advocate for the United States Military. He also has extensive knowledge and experience in resolving corporate defense and litigation in vast international and national legal issues.

He brings a wealth of successful experience to government contractors seeking defense counsel in the various areas of procurement fraud, international contracting, False Claims Act defense and more. Mr. Allen’s federal litigation experience as a former appellate attorney representing the United States and federal attorney for defendants in trials led to his clients receiving overwhelming favorable outcomes in contested issues and obtaining non-contested resolutions. Read  more..

Walter Foster Federal Defense AttorneyWalter H. Foster, Of Counsel, is a seasoned attorney and former Army colonel with deep experience orchestrating teams, imparting clarity and counsel, and executing on behalf of both private enterprise and the federal government. From managing technical construction in Iraq to prosecuting terrorists for the Pentagon, Walter brings mission focus to every challenge.

Moving to the Pentagon as Lead Trial Counsel, Walter was tapped to spearhead the high-profile prosecution of an Al Qaeda operative who had been detained at Guantanamo Bay. Walter established and managed a busy practice in Tampa, Florida working the entire case lifecycle for 3,000 bench trials and 80 jury trials over nine years. While focusing largely on criminal defense, civil litigation. 

The Required Proof by the Prosecutor in a Federal Mail Fraud Cases

In comparison to receiving wire fraud charges, mail fraud is a serious criminal offense, and the penalties for being convicted as a government contractor can be severe. To prove and convict you of mail fraud beyond a reasonable doubt, federal attorneys must show that certain elements were present in the alleged incident. These elements are generally as follows:

1. Intent to defraud: The defendant purposefully intended to deceive or cheat another person or entity.

2. Material misrepresentation: The defendant made a false statement or representation of fact, which was material to the scheme to defraud the federal government.

3. Reliance: Another person or entity relied on the false statement or representation and suffered damages as a result of this relied-on information.

4. Use of mail: The defendant used the U.S. Postal Service or private mail carrier to further their scheme to defraud.

The prosecution must prove all four elements must be present and proven beyond a reasonable doubt. If any element is missing, the conviction cannot stand in court. Understanding the elements used to prove mail fraud is essential for those charged with this crime. It is important to speak to experienced federal mail fraud attorneys and criminal defense lawyers who can help defend against these charges.

Federal Mail Fraud Legal Defenses

Lack of Knowledge: If you are a contractor employee and simply followed directions to place a package in the mail, you can show that you were unaware of the fraud. US attorneys are very aggressive in defending a criminal case involving government contracts, pursuing all avenues. Therefore, your federal mail fraud defense firm must be just as aggressive and be able to present the facts to a jury.

Not part of the underlying scheme: this is a commonly missed piece when defending a criminal case. The underlying scheme is usually some level of statutory violation. For example, fraud in the SBA 8(a) program could be the issue; developing pass-through contracts without complying with the Limitations on Subcontracting requirements could also be the issue.

No underlying scheme has been proven: In government contracting, prosecutors usually prevail in cases at trial, mostly because juries are not quite familiar with government contracting programs. At Watson & Associates, LLC our mail and wire fraud lawyers work with local criminal attorneys to increase your chances of not being convicted under 18 USC 1341. We accomplish this by bringing the unique knowledge of federal contracting to the table.

No intent to defraud the government. As a government contractor charged with mail fraud, the DOJ or prosecutor must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you had the knowing intent to commit fraud. For example, unintentional statements or misrepresentation through the mail, it is not enough to constitute criminal mail fraud. In federal contracting, bids submitted through the mail can trigger a fraud charge.

Penalties for Mail Fraud

Federal Mail Fraud by government contractors is punishable by imprisonment for 20 years, a fine, or both. Two subsets of fraud are punishable by a $1,000,000 fine, 30 years’ incarceration, or both. These are cases involving a federally declared disaster (such as sending false solicitations to defraud disaster victims) or cases affecting a financial institution. Our federal mail fraud defense attorneys only handle civil and criminal cases involving federal government contracts.

Statue of Limitations for Mail Fraud 18 USC 3282

The statute of limitation for mail fraud under 18 USC 3282 is five years. This would normally apply to government contracting criminal cases. When a case involves fraud schemes that affect financial institutions, then the statute of limitations is ten years. See 18 USC 3293

Contact Our Government Contractor Federal Mail Fraud Defense Firm

If you are a federal government contractor seeking a sound legal defense team to represent you in a civil or criminal case under 18 USC 1341, call our federal mail fraud defense firm at 1.866.601.5518 for a free confidential consultation. Speak with Theodore Watson, our local government contractor criminal defense lawyer.