It goes without saying the of providing false information in virtually any setting has ramifications. Providing false or misleading information on loan, credit or life insurance applications, or in connection with sale of property, can have civil repercussions, and may form the basis of a fraud claim. Certainly, providing false information to the government generally opens one up to criminal sanctions. Maryland substantive law prohibits giving false or misleading information law enforcement officers in three settings.
The most serious of the potential charges is found in the more general identity fraud statute, section 8-301 of the Criminal Law Article, and titled: Assuming identity of another. This section provides:
"A person may not knowingly and willfully assume the identity of another to avoid identification, apprehension, or prosecution for a crime"
This crime is a misdemeanor, punishable by 18 months incarceration and/or a fine not exceeding $5,000.
Section 9-502 of the Criminal Law Article punishes conduct of an arrestee, and prohibits
" [K]nowingly, and with intent to deceive, make a false statement to a law enforcement officer concerning the person's identity, address, or date of birth "
Also a misdemeanor, this crime carries the lessened punishment of 6 months and or a $500 fine.
Finally, section 9-501 of the Criminal Law Article prohibits the making of:
- a statement
- report, or
that is materially false, where that person intends
" to deceive and to cause an investigation or other action to be taken as a result of the statement, report, or complaint "
A violation of this section is also a misdemeanor, this crime carries the lessened punishment of 6 months and or a $500 fine.