Indianapolis, Indiana – Indiana Code § 35-43-1-7 has been made effective as of July 1, 2014.
This new criminal statute, enacted by P.L.158-2013, SEC. 458, covers certain computer-related offenses against intellectual property. It takes the place of 35‐43‐1‐4, which was repealed.
Indiana Code § 35-43-1-7 reads, in full:
(a) A person who knowingly or intentionally and who without authorization:
(1) modifies data, a computer program, or supporting documentation;
(2) destroys data, a computer program, or supporting documentation; or
(3) discloses or takes data, a computer program, or supporting documentation that is:
(A) a trade secret (as defined in IC 24-2-3-2); or
(B) otherwise confidential as provided by law; and that resides or exists internally or externally on a computer, computer system, or computer network, commits an offense against intellectual property, a Level 6 felony.
(b) However, the offense is a Level 5 felony if the offense is committed for the purpose of devising or executing any scheme or artifice to defraud or to obtain any property.
Violation of the statute is a Level 6 felony, with a sentencing range of six to 30 months. The advisory sentence is one year. This falls within Credit Classification A, available to most misdemeanants and Level 6 offenders, which allows the sentence to be reduced by one day for each day served.
If the offense is committed for purpose of defrauding or obtaining property, the crime is a Level 5 felony, with a sentencing range of one to six years. The advisory sentence is three years. This falls within Credit Classification B, which is available to offenders who have committed an offense that is Level 5 or above and who are not credit restricted. Credit Classification B allows the sentence to be reduced by one day for each three days served.
Practice Tip: When sentencing, a court is required under Indiana Code § 35-38-1-3 to make a record of its reasons for selecting the sentence that it imposes if it has found aggravating or mitigating circumstances.