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Criminal Jury Instructions

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10.2-10  Illegal Use of a Credit Card -- § 53a-128d (1)

Revised to December 1, 2007

The defendant is charged [in count __] with the illegal use of a credit card.  The statute defining this offense imposes punishment on

any person who, with intent to defraud the issuer, a participating party, or a person providing money, goods, services or anything else of value, or any other person, uses for the purpose of obtaining money, goods, services or anything else of value a credit card (obtained or retained by the giving of false information / which (he/she) knows is (forged / expired / revoked)).

For you to find the defendant guilty of this charge, the state must prove the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:

Element 1 - Used a credit card
The first element is that the defendant used, for the purpose of obtaining money, goods, services or anything else of value, a credit card <insert as appropriate:>

  • obtained or retained by the giving of false information.1 

  • which (he/she) knew was (forged / expired / revoked).

"Credit card" means any instrument or device, whether known as a credit card, as a credit plate, or by any other name, issued with or without fee by an issuer for the use of a cardholder in obtaining money, goods, services or anything else of value on credit. 

[<If allegations are that credit card was obtained or retained by the giving of false information, see False Statement to Procure Issuance of a Credit Card, Instruction 10.2-2.>]

[<If allegations are that the credit card was forged, expired, or revoked, insert appropriate definitions:>:

  • A "forged" credit card means a card falsely made or falsely embossed or the uttering of such a card.2

    • A person "falsely makes" a credit card when (he/she) makes or draws, in whole or in part, a device or instrument that purports to be the credit card of a named issuer but that is not such a credit card because the issuer did not authorize the making or drawing, or when such person so alters a credit card that was validly issued.

    • A person "falsely embosses" a credit card when, without authorization of the named issuer, (he/she) completes a credit card by adding any of the matter, other than the signature of the cardholder, which an issuer requires to appear on the credit card before it can be used by a cardholder.

    • A person "utters" a credit card when (he/she) offers or tenders or otherwise attempts to pass such a credit card, or when (he/she) uses or attempts to use such a credit card.

  • An "expired credit card" means a credit card that is no longer valid because the term shown on it has elapsed.

  • A "revoked credit card" means a credit card that is no longer valid because permission to use it has been suspended or terminated by the issuer.  [<If evidence regarding mailing of revocation notice has been admitted:>  Knowledge of revocation shall be presumed to have been received by a cardholder four days after it has been mailed to (him/her), at the address set forth on the credit card or at (his/her) last known address, by registered or certified mail, return receipt requested, and, if the address is more than five hundred miles from the place of mailing, by air mail.  If the address is located outside of the United States, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, the Canal Zone or Canada, notice shall be presumed to have been received ten days after mailing by registered or certified mail.  This means that you may find, but do not have to, that the defendant, if (he/she) was the cardholder, knew that the card had been revoked if you find that the notice was mailed as I just stated.]

A person acts "knowingly" with respect to conduct or circumstances when (he/she) is aware that (his/her) conduct is of such nature or that such circumstances exist.  <See Knowledge, Instruction 2.3-3.>

Element 2 - Intent to defraud
The second element is that the defendant intended to defraud the issuer, a participating party, or a person providing money, goods, services or anything else of value, or any other person.  <See Intent to Defraud, Instruction 2.3-6.>

Conclusion

In summary, the state must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that 1) the defendant used, for the purpose of obtaining money, goods, services or anything else of value, a credit card that had been <insert specific allegations regarding the credit card>, and 2) (he/she) intended to defraud another person.

If you unanimously find that the state has proved beyond a reasonable doubt each of the elements of the crime of illegal use of a credit card, then you shall find the defendant guilty.  On the other hand, if you unanimously find that the state has failed to prove beyond a reasonable doubt any of the elements, you shall then find the defendant not guilty.
_______________________________________________________

1 In violation of General Statutes § 53a-128b. 

2 See Credit Card Forgery, Instruction 10.2-8, and Credit Card Forgery, Instruction 10.2-9.

Commentary

Sentence enhancer
General Statutes § 53a-128d provides that this offense is a class D felony, pursuant to General Statutes § 53a-128i (a), if the value of the money, goods, services or other things of value obtained in violation of this subsection exceeds $500 in any six-month period; it is otherwise a class A misdemeanor, pursuant to
General Statutes § 53a-128i (b). The jury must find this fact beyond a reasonable doubt.  See Sentence Enhancers, Instruction 2.11-4.

 

 

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