Many people charged with embezzlement in San Leandro never had any intention of committing a crime. When employees, trustees, and others are placed in a position where they control access to money or other valuable property, they may take actions they consider reasonable, but which are misinterpreted or which unwittingly violate the law.
Embezzlement is a special type of theft and it is considered to violate a trust, so traditionally it has been viewed more harshly by courts than other forms of theft. There are many potential defenses applicable in embezzlement cases that a San Leandro embezzlement lawyer could help you explore. So, if you are facing charges of embezzlement, consulting an experienced criminal defense attorney may be a wise move.
The penalties for those convicted of embezzlement vary depending on the value of the property at issue in the case. If the property considered to be wrongfully taken is worth more than $950, the offense could be treated as a felony offense equivalent to grand theft under California Penal Code §487. This type of offense is referred to as a “wobbler” because courts in California have the discretion to treat the offense as a misdemeanor.
As a felony, embezzlement may be punished by up to three years in prison, or more if the amount is excessive or if the circumstances include certain aggravating factors. As a misdemeanor, embezzlement is punishable by up to six months in jail and a fine as high as $1,000.
CPC §503 defines embezzlement as “the fraudulent appropriation of property by a person to whom it has been entrusted.” These simple words have been interpreted to require that certain basic elements must be proven in order for a person to be convicted of embezzlement. These elements are as follows:
So, under this standard, an employee who—unbeknownst to the employer—”borrows” money with the intention of paying it back may still be found guilty of embezzlement since he or she appropriated the property without permission and with the intention of depriving the owner of its use for a time. An embezzlement lawyer in San Leandro could offer further clarification on how state law addresses circumstances like these.
While San Leandro embezzlement lawyers often make successful use of many defensive strategies, there are some that may be unique to embezzlement cases.
An attorney could argue that the person taking the property had authority to do so and that the taking was therefore not fraudulent. If an employee entrusted with the use of a company credit card for travel expenses charges excessive amounts, the expenses cannot generally be considered embezzlement because the employer authorized the use of the card for those type of expenses.
It could also be argued that the person taking the property either did not appropriate it for personal use or lacked the intent to deprive the owner. An employee trusted with valuable jewelry may remove the property for cleaning, repair, or appraisal, none of which might be considered embezzlement.
The stigma and the potential penalties of having an embezzlement conviction—or even just a charge—on your record could make it difficult to obtain employment or housing. It may be important to defend any theft charges vigorously.
A San Leandro embezzlement lawyer who understands how these charges are prosecuted in local courts could devise the best defensive strategy to fit the circumstances of your case. If you are facing embezzlement charges or may be charged with any form of theft, talk to a criminal attorney with a thorough knowledge of embezzlement defense to start working toward the optimal outcome in your case.
The Nieves Law Firm is dedicated to providing aggressive criminal defense representation to working professionals who have found themselves in trouble with the law. We show up to win, and we’re not afraid to fight aggressively to accomplish our client’s goals.
We understand that being accused of a crime can be a scary and confusing experience. That’s why we take the stress off our clients by handling the full scope of their legal situation from the initial consultation to the final outcome. Our bilingual attorneys and staff are here to ensure that our clients feel heard and understood every step of the way.
As one of the largest criminal defense teams in Oakland and the Greater Bay Area, we have the resources and experience to handle even the most complex cases. Our experienced team examines various aspects of your case and, perhaps most importantly, we genuinely care about our clients and their future. We take the time to learn about their goals and priorities so that we can achieve an outcome that allows them to move past their mistakes and focus on the future they want. When you work with us, you become part of our team.
Our skilled criminal defense attorneys have experience handling a wide range of criminal cases. With a deep understanding of the legal system and a track record of successful cases, our lawyers are committed to achieving the best possible outcome in your case.
When facing a criminal charge, having dedicated and experienced attorneys on your side is critical. At The Nieves Law Firm, we understand the gravity of your situation, and our criminal defense attorneys provide unwavering support and legal guidance.
From the moment you reach out to us, we prioritize your well-being and legal interests. Our criminal lawyers are with you every step of the way, from arrest to hearings and beyond, to ensure that your rights are protected. Whether you’re facing charges related to DUI, drug offenses, assault, sex crimes or any other allegation, we have the knowledge and courtroom experience to fight vigorously on your behalf.
We believe in the power of collaboration and will actively involve you in the decision-making process, ensuring you are well-informed and empowered to make the best choices for your defense. Our goal is not only to navigate the legal complexities but also to provide you with the peace of mind and reassurance you deserve during this challenging time.
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Case Dismissed after Completion of Drug Court
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