We Represent Federal Government Contractors Only.
Are you a federal government contractor or a small business bidding on government contracts? Have you been accused of mail fraud under 18 USC 1341?
At Watson & Associates, LLC, our federal mail fraud defense attorneys 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.
With our experienced mail fraud defense attorneys on your side, you can have peace of mind knowing that your case will be handled with the utmost care and attention to detail. We will fight tirelessly to protect your rights and interests.
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 Lawyers
Are you a federal government contractor being investigated or charged with mail fraud statute under 18 USC 1341? Call our federal criminal defense attorneys to review your case and legal options.
Why Choose Watson & Associates, LLC for Government Contractor Federal Criminal Defense Cases?
Theodore P. Watson, Esquire. Practice Group Lead. At Watson & Associates, with law offices in Colorado and Washington, DC, our top rated criminal defense attorneys and federal mail fraud defense lawyers have experience actually 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.
Wise 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..
What is Mail Fraud Under 18 USC 1341?
The legal definition of federal mail fraud in government contracting under the mail fraud statute 18 USC 1341 is when the contractor uses U.S. Post Office in any criminal attempt to get payment, government contracts or anything of value. Federal prosecutors will usually have an original crime such as Buy American Act compliance issues, false claims criminal charges or some other level of federal offenses of fraud against the federal government. When the underlying crime is present, the mere fact that the contractor used the Postal Service or other private or commercial interstate carrier to gain access to government contract award, payment of invoices or some other fraud, the crime is then raised to the level of fraud and its associated penalties.
By using the Postal Service or other private or commercial interstate carrier, the crime is raised to the level of mail fraud and therefore incurs enhanced punishment, which may include a separate federal prosecution for crimes that would otherwise be matters of state jurisdiction. When bidding on government contracts and using the mail to submit documents or even submit invoices, 18 USC 1342 makes it clear that if you use a fictitious name or address through the mail, you can receive punishment and be sentenced to up to five years in federal prison and or a fine.
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 can be severe as a government contractor. 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 an experienced federal mail fraud lawyer and criminal defense attorney who can help defend against these charges.
18 USC 1341 Mail Fraud and Required Elements
18 USC 1341 specifically deals with “Mail Fraud.” When defending a case, the crime simply means facilitating a fraudulent scheme or conduct by utilizing the U.S. Mail. To prevail in a criminal case, the government attorneys will have to show two elements. (1) devising or intending to devise a scheme to defraud or perform specific fraudulent acts, and; (2) using the mail for the specific purpose of executing the scheme of the fraudulent acts. As a government contractor, you should be aware that these lingering charges give federal attorneys ample opportunity to increase punishment when bringing the case to trial. Watson’s federal mail fraud deense attorneys can provide you with an aggressive legal defense.
Mail Fraud 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. Defending a criminal case involving government contracts, US attorneys are very aggressive in pursuing all avenues. Therefore, your federal mail fraud defense lawyers must be just as aggressive and be able to present the facts to a jury.
Not part of the underlying scheme: this is yet a commonly missed piece when trying to defend 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 also could 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. There are two subsets of fraud 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
Why us as Contractor Mail Fraud Lawyers?
When federal contractors experience investigations, federal indictments, and ultimately a criminal trial, the reality sets in that there is serious jail time and or fines at stake. The other reality is that companies immediately seek to hire a local criminal defense attorney. The problem is that most local criminal lawyers are not experienced with the underlying crimes in government mail fraud cases. Therefore, he or she tends to take crash courses in hopes of bringing a sound legal defense. This creates risk for you as a defendant. Our government contractor federal mail fraud defense lawyers can decrease the chances of a conviction or fine by bringing their procurement expertise to the table. See information about getting federal indictments dismissed.
Contact Our Contractor Mail Fraud Lawyers
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 defense contractor federal mail fraud defense attorneys at 1.866.601.5518 for a free confidential consultation. Speak with Theodore Watson, our local government contractor criminal defense lawyer.