Computer Trespass: NY Penal Law 156.10

A felony offense, Computer Trespass is one of the more serious computer crimes prosecuted by Assistant District Attorneys and defended by New York computer crime lawyers throughout the State of New York from NYC to the Hudson Valley and beyond. If convicted of New York Penal Law 156.10 will you be incarcerated for seven, fifteen or twenty five years? Absolutely not, but free from incarceration you will not be. Can the Supreme or County Court Judge presiding over your criminal case sentence you to four years in prison on this class “E” felony? One simple word is needed to answer this question and it is “yes.” In fact, he or she can do so even if you never previously stepped foot into a police station, courthouse or county jail.

NY Penal Law 156.10: The Elements of Computer Trespass

Generally, you are guilty of Computer Trespass when lacking the right to use a computer or access the same, including an associated service network, you take a few additional and improper steps. Pursuant to NY Penal Law 156.10(1), when using this computer without permission you must also have a distinct purpose to commit a felony. Alternatively, pursuant to New York Penal Law 156.10(2), when using the computer or service network you must, with knowledge, gain access to computer material.

NY Penal Law 156.10: Further Clarifying Computer Trespass

There are a few elements of critical import that you must review and examine with your criminal lawyer to ascertain whether you have committed the crime of Computer Trespass in New York. First, did you have permission to access or use the computer in question? Did you have permission in the past and since then has that authority been revoked? Moreover, assuming you did not have permission, did you have the intent to commit a felony or alternatively gain access to computer material? If the theory of the prosecution was the latter, did you randomly come upon this computer material or did you knowingly access it? Again, assuming your actions were knowingly, was the material “computer material” as defined by the law? Merely accessing the computer without the intent to commit a felony or to knowingly gaining access to “computer material” does not make your actions a felony crime. At a minimum, your computer crime or cybercrime lawyer should be able to vet these issues with you and identify the proper or strongest defense against the charges while securing whatever evidence is necessary to further that defense.

Keep in mind that just as with many other computer related offenses in the New York Penal Law, if you acted in a manner as described above and you also damaged or altered computer data or a computer program, you may face more serious charges. These crimes can include, for example, varying degrees of Computer Tampering which can carry a potential penalty of up to fifteen years in prison in additional to the numerous professional and immigration consequences that may impact your future.

Whatever the allegation may be or subsection you are accused of violating, if you are accused of or arrested for Computer Trespass, the steps taken today can, and will, have a direct impact on the results you may be forced to live with forever. When there is no substitute for experience, knowledge and advocacy, the New York criminal defense lawyers and former Manhattan prosecutors are ready and more than capable to identify your best defense and set the same into motion.

Call the New York criminal lawyers and former Manhattan prosecutors at (212) 312–7129 or contact us online today.

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