There is a big market for antiques and some items can go for hundreds of thousands and even millions of dollars. In the antique business one has to be wary of fakes. Remember the Salamander Papers in the 1980s? Producing fake historical documents, guns, clothing, and all other types of items is a big business. Have you ever seen the TV show Pawn Stars? Those poor guys are always on the lookout for fake historical items and have to have experts looking at the items before committing to buying them.
The crime of making fake antiques is call criminal simulation. Criminal simulation requires an intent to defraud another and any of the following:
- When someone makes or alters an object in whole or in part so that it appears to have value because of age, antiquity, rarity, source, or authorship that it does not have;
- When someone sells, passes, or otherwise utters an object so made or altered;
- When someone possesses an object so made or altered with intent to sell, pass, or otherwise utter it; or
- When someone authenticates or certifies an object so made or altered as genuine or as different from what it is.
Criminal simulation is the not the most common crime and often unheard of because people who commit such frauds are very good at what they do and not getting caught. The crime, however, runs to everyone in the chain of the transaction, but each person in the chain of the transaction has to have the requisite intent to defraud.
Penalties for Criminal Simulation
The penalties for this charge are dependent on the amount defrauded and ranges from a class B misdemeanor all the way up to a second degree felony.
- If the value is less than $500, the offense is a class B misdemeanor.
- If the value is between $500 and $1,500, the offense is a class A misdemeanor.
- If the value is between $1,500 and $5,000, the offense is a felony of the third degree.
- If the value is more than $5,000, the offense is a felony of the second degree.
If you are facing criminal simulation charges give our Utah criminal defense attorneys a call at 801.618.1334 for a free consultation.