THE FEDERAL WIRE fraud statute, originally enacted in 1952, is codified under 18 U.S.C. §1343, and has two essential elements: 1) using, or trying to use, signal transmission that occurs in interstate or foreign commerce; 2) transmission that is in furtherance of defrauding someone.

The law has been utilized against virtually every new electronic method of fraud as well as less sophisticated schemes. Federal jurisdiction over wire fraud originates in the Constitution under Article 1, Section 8, and is based on Congress's right to make laws affecting interstate and foreign commerce. It is titled Fraud By Wire, Radio, or Television:

Whoever, having devised or intending to devise any scheme or artifice to defraud, or for obtaining money or property by means of false or fraudulent pretenses, representations, ...
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