The prosecutor must prove all of the following elements of wire fraud:
- A scheme to commit fraud
- Use of wire, radio, television or digital communication to further that scheme
- Specific intent to commit fraud
Take note, to be convicted of wire fraud, you don’t necessarily need to have actively told a lie; you can also be convicted based on a negative misrepresentation, i.e., omission.
To be convicted of wire fraud, you don’t need to have actually succeeded in defrauding people; You only need to have used the wires to try and defraud people. That is the requisite specific intent. No actual loss is required.
Examples of Defenses Against Wire Fraud
Simply participating in a wire fraud scheme is not enough to be convicted. The prosecutor needs to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you knew about the scheme and had the specific goal of committing fraud.
You can be convicted of wire fraud even if you lacked specific intent but acted with ‘reckless indifference’ as to whether the statements that you made were true.