Fraud is considered to be a commercial crime. It effectively involves deception to secure a monetary gain that is unfair or unlawful, or to deprive a victim of a legal right. According to Section 380(1) of the Criminal Code, fraud is committed when an individual by ‘deceit, falsehood or other fraudulent means’ defrauds the public or an individual of any property, money or valuable security. Intention to defraud is a key component of the crime.
To prove fraud, the Crown would have to show that both a dishonest act was committed and that there was a deprivation as a consequence.
Fraud is generally divided into two categories: Fraud over five thousand dollars, and fraud under five thousand dollars. Understandably, the penalties for the former are more significant than the latter.
Fraud over 5k:
Fraud under 5k:
There is no such offence as ‘white collar crime’ in the Criminal Code. Instead, white collar crime refers to a collection of different offences which are committed at the occupational and corporate level. Some examples of white collar offences include: tax fraud, securities offences, corporate regulatory offences, corporate criminal liability etc.