Like many other states, Arizona has several laws that address identity theft crimes. Depending on the circumstances of the case, you could be charged with one or more of these crimes if you steal, or attempt to steal, someone else’s identity for your own purposes.
For more information about identity theft crimes, read The Crime of Identity Theft.
Anyone in Arizona who knowingly purchases, creates, records, takes, possesses, or uses anyone else’s personal identifying information without that person’s consent for any unlawful purpose commits the crime of taking the identity of another person.
Similarly, anyone who hires an employee knowing the employee used the personal identification of another person commits the crime of knowingly accepting the identity of another person.
Knowingly taking or accepting another person’s identity is a Class 4 felony offense in Arizona. (Arizona Revised Statutes Annotated section 13-2008)
Taking someone else’s identity can also result in a more serious identity theft charge in Arizona if certain elements are present. The crime of aggravated taking identity of another person or entity occurs when someone knowingly takes someone else’s identity without that person’s intent and either:
The aggravated taking of another person or entity’s identity in Arizona is a Class 3 felony offense. (Arizona Revised Statutes Annotated section 13-2009)
It’s also a crime in Arizona to traffic in identifying information. Anyone who sells, transfers, or otherwise transmits someone else’s personal identifying information without that person’s consent for any unlawful purpose commits the crime of trafficking in the identity of another person or entity. This is a Class 2 felony offense in Arizona.
(Arizona Revised Statutes Annotated section 13-2010)
Committing an identity theft crime in Arizona is very serious. If you are convicted of this crime you face many years in a state prison and significant fines. Additionally, Arizona law allows for enhanced penalties if you have previously been convicted of other crimes, or if there are mitigating or aggravating factors present in your case. For a more detailed explanation of types of crimes and criminal penalties in Arizona, read Arizona Felony Crimes by Class and Sentences, and Arizona Misdemeanor Crimes by Class and Sentences.
If you have any questions about Arizona’s identity theft laws or think you need legal advice, you need to contact a local Arizona defense attorney as soon as possible. Even if you don’t think you have committed a crime, being charged with an identity theft offense is a very serious situation. Only an experienced attorney who has represented clients in Arizona criminal courts can evaluate your case and advise you about what you should do in your particular situation.