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Commonly associated with white collar crime, most embezzlement accusations occur when an employee has access to company funds and those funds go missing, or there are questions regarding the loss of money. Even if you are wrongly accused, a conviction for embezzlement could ruin a career and disrupt your future.

A Pelham embezzlement lawyer may be able to explain potential steps to minimize negative consequences. Working with a skilled fraud defense attorney could be the first step to protecting yourself and your rights throughout the entire criminal process.

Necessary Elements to Prove an Embezzlement Accusation

Embezzlement is an extremely serious charge. For this reason, it rarely prosecuted lightly and carries a relatively hefty burden of proof. For a court to find an alleged actor guilty, the prosecutor must prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, that:

  • The actor knowingly and willingly took the property of another
  • The owner gave the actor access to the property
  • The owner did not give the legal title of the property to the actor

Demonstrating each of these elements may be notably tricky. With the assistance of an embezzlement lawyer in Pelham, it is possible to demonstrate how a situation did not occur as it is alleged. This often takes building a strong criminal defense and working to demonstrate that a charge did not occur.

Laws Related to the Offense

While embezzlement is commonly associated with financial crimes related to work, it is a type of theft, and consequently, the laws related to theft in Alabama apply. After discussing any accusations with a Pelham embezzlement attorney, understanding embezzlement law and consequences is a valuable next step. Charges of embezzlement are broken into a variety of degrees, based on the circumstances of the theft.

Under the Code of Alabama §13A-8-3, first-degree embezzlement involves property worth more than $2,500, a car, or working with others to take at least $1,000 over a 180-day period. A conviction for this Class B felony may result in up to 20 years and a fine of up to $30,000.

It must be noted that other acts of embezzlement carry less serious penalties. Theft of property worth between $1,500 and $2,500, firearms, or livestock is considered second-degree embezzlement, a Class C felony. For this offense, a person could go to jail for up to 10 years and pay up to $15,000 in fines.

It is a Class D felony to take property worth more than $500 up to $1,499 or take a credit or debit card, while theft of property valued at $500 or less is considered a Class A misdemeanor. These are third- and fourth-degree embezzlement, respectively. The penalties associated with either charge may depend on the judge’s sentencing–however, the length of imprisonment typically does not exceed five years.

Punishments for Pelham Embezzlement Charges

With the possible jail time and fines, a felony conviction on a person’s record could pose problems in other areas of their life. Criminal convictions, even those related to financial crimes, will label someone a felon. This could impact where someone is able to live, their relationships with friends and family, and their reputation.

A crime of moral turpitude could also drastically change someone’s ability to practice certain professions. As an example, since embezzlement is typically associated with white collar criminal activity, the government may prohibit that person from holding certain licenses to practice various professions, such as law. Businesses may also hesitate to hire someone who has been convicted of embezzlement or white-collar fraud. This is why it may be critical for defendants to reach out to an accomplished Pelham embezzlement lawyer.

Defend Against Accusations with a Pelham Embezzlement Attorney

The best way to mitigate an accusation’s impact on your life is to fight for a favorable resolution in a court of law. Assistance from a Pelham embezzlement lawyer who is familiar with the local laws and court systems could be the key to protecting yourself and your future. Before deciding how to proceed, allow a legal counsel who understands how to strategize and approach this type of issue to consult on your case. Do not hesitate to contact today.

Pelham Fraud Lawyer