Manassas Embezzlement Lawyer
When an individual is charged with embezzlement, it is critical to seek out the best possible legal advice and a solid defense strategy. Embezzlement allegations can deprive a person of property and liberty and can permanently damage a person’s reputation in the community. No one should face criminal embezzlement charges alone.
A Manassas embezzlement lawyer that has experience navigating the Virginia court system could support individuals while they work through the embezzlement defense. If a person has been charged with embezzlement, they should contact a persistent fraud attorney today.
What is Embezzlement?
Embezzlement is a type of crime that is similar in nature to theft or larceny, with one important distinction: embezzlement crimes require that the stolen or converted property was originally entrusted in the hands of the accused.
A classic embezzlement scenario is when an employee is trusted to monitor or manage the property of a business, and then the employee intentionally and wrongfully appropriates the property for their own use. The employee had legal access to the property but was never granted formal ownership.
When a person has legal access to the money or property of someone else, embezzlement can also occur if the trusted person conceals or disposes of the property.
Proof Needed to Secure an Embezzlement Conviction
To convict a person of embezzlement, the Code of Virginia Title 18.2-111 requires proof that the person wrongfully and fraudulently used, disposed of, concealed, or embezzled the money or personal property of another person that they received for another person or through their employment.
Possible Embezzlement Penalties
The consequences of embezzlement differ depending on whether the case is brought in federal court or state court. The penalties will also look different if the individual has prior criminal convictions. In a Virginia state court, the value of the property embezzled generally dictates the penalties.
If the value of the property embezzled is less than $200, it is treated as a misdemeanor and carries up to 12 months in jail, and/or a fine up to $2,500. If the value of the property embezzled is more than $200, it is treated as a felony, and carries up to 20 years in prison and/or a fine up to $2,500. A Manassas embezzlement lawyer could mitigate the severity of the penalties that a person may face.
Federal charges carry penalties that can include up to 20 years in federal prison and can result in fines up to $250,000 or the amount embezzled, whichever is greater.
Value of a Manassas Embezzlement Defense Lawyer
In the very early stages of an embezzlement scenario, critical negotiating can take place between the accused and the aggrieved business or person. Before formal charges are brought by prosecutors, an experienced criminal defense attorney can sometimes negotiate an agreement that will satisfy the complaining party.
In other cases, once formal charges are brought, an attorney can build a defense that challenges the validity of the prosecution’s evidence, challenges the manner in which they obtained the evidence, or provide reasonable explanations for the alleged violation.
In addition, you and your Manassas embezzlement lawyer could review the evidence supporting the claimed value of the property. When the value of the embezzled property is minimized, the resulting penalties can often be minimized as well.
When life and liberty are threatened in an embezzlement case, trust an experienced attorney to critically review the strength of the prosecution’s position and offer vital advice for taking the next steps forward. Call our office for an initial consultation and immediate professional analysis.