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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: UK Law
Satisfied Customers: 70508
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice.
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Where do I stand? I was arrested counts of fraud in October.

Customer Question

Where do I stand?
I was arrested for numerous counts of fraud in October. I had to get home to my children so bypassed a need for a solicitor (I know this is stupid now)
It was around 6 accounts for advertising puppies online and taking deposits but the puppies weren't real. I had intended to pay all deposits back, and have for 1 person so far.
I also sold my engagement ring in 2014. The lady stated she received an empty parcel. I told them the ring was definitely sent and when the lady told me it hadn't been received I tried my best to help her. She reported me to eBay who banned my account so I could no longer respond. She then went to the police.
I do have previous for fraud. The puppy thing happened in 2012ish and abother for fraud when I was 18. I got married and moved away, I went to court for that when I was 21.
The 1st I was given 60 hours of community service and a £500 fine and the 2nd a small fine.
Now I'm 28 and quite frankly frightened. I have a husband who works full time and 2 young children who both have severe autism.
What am I looking at punishment wise here? I've learnt my lesson and intend to pay as many victims back before court.
I have admitted the puppy scam, and will be charged tomorrow. The ring I can't admit too as I sent it and I'm not guilty there.
Will they charge me for both at once? If not will they wait for court until they decide if they are charging about the ring or will they be charged separately so I require*****appearances?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: UK Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.

How can I help with this please?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
The bottom 3 questions please. Thanks
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.

When were your previous matters?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
One I was arrested for and did when I was 18 but it didn't go to court until I was 21. So it happened in 2005 and went to court 2008.The other one was 2009.I paid my fines in full for both.The ring sold in 2014And the fake puppies were October-December 2014.Nothing since.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Quite frankly I think court will think this is becoming a habit when actually I was very low on funds and made a mistake instead of asking for help from family.I am hoping this is my final chance and it doesn't end in prison. However if I'm charged with fraud over the ring (which I didn't do) that's £6000. I fear that they'll send me to prison.My husband is a soldier, and with 2 children with special needs leaving them when I have practically raised them single handed is frightening as to how he and they will cope.I also suffer from serious ancixity and bone diagnosed depression.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.

Yes, it is possible that they could.

But they are going to have to prove this. I am not sure they can prove the ring incident. How can they disprove your defence that you put it in the post? Things go missing all the time in the post.

I think the puppy scam can't be avoided as you have admitted it.

They could charge you with the ring incident but I'm not sure they will get a conviction.

Can I clarify anything for you?


Customer: replied 1 year ago.
What do you mean by they could charge me with the ring incident but not sure they'll get q conviction?If I am looking at prison time - how much is likely?For just the puppiesAnd then the puppies and the ring?I want to get myself and my family prepared if that is a likely case.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Also do they take people's personal circumstances into consideration?As I strongly believe my children would deteriate without me here.
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.

No, not really. It isn't a consideration for charging or sentence really. Personal mitigation is a consideration but the fact of dependent children is not.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Also. I am going to be charged tomorrow for the puppies.Will they make a decision on the ring charge then? Or will they wait to.m charge me and take me to court until a decision has been made on the ring.Before I forget to ask. As I have had 3 fines and 1 community service what is a likely punishment? Is a suspended sentence likely? If so is that a harsher punishment than fines and community service?If I pay all the puppy people back prior to court will that work better for me?
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.

They are likely to make a decision on both at once.

I would have expected a suspended sentence or a more onerous community order.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
a suspended sentence is a more serious punishment than fines and community service then.God I do hope you are right, I appreciate your help.It would be lovely to not be scared anymore
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.

Yes, that is right.

All the best.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi jo. Today I went into the station and admitted guilt for the puppies. I wasn't charged today. They said they had further enquiries about the ring and would either charge me with one or both in March which is my bail date.However the police are now asking to speak to my husband? They asked prior to Christmas and we are led to believe they've only "asked" rather than told him to go to the station because of his military position.They again reminded me of this today. I've made it very clear that my husband has no involvement in either charge. Both he was unaware were issues until after my arrest in December.I realise they want to speak to him probably to try and get more evidence against me, which I don't understand as I admitted the 1 charge I did.Does he HAVE to go? And if he doesn't will he be arrested?Is this a usual tactic for the police? As my previous convictions my husband was never questioned.Thinking it might be because the fraudulent funds went into a joint account, one my husband didn't have access to other than with his bank card (and most of the fraud was in a savings account that was solely in my name, however linked too our joint account)Also I was obviously upset today and when asked I simply said I didn't want to go to prison and leave my children. The police lady replied with "prisons are full, and most people don't go to prison anymore" not sure what she meant by that?
Expert:  Jo C. replied 1 year ago.

He doesn't have to go voluntarily but if he doesn't they will probably arrest him.

It isn't particularly usual but they can do it. They wouldn't automatically go around arresting spouses although if there is enough evidence to do so they would.

I wouldn't take much notice of the police. You don't become a police officer because you were a brilliant student of law generally.