Embezzlement charges don’t just happen to bigwigs misappropriating their own company funds. More often than not, everyday people are accused of embezzlement and face harsh consequences for it. An embezzlement attorney in Irvine can help defend you in court.
By using our years of experience and negotiation skills, the attorneys at the Simmrin Law Group could be able to get your penalties reduced or even convince the judge to drop your charges. You can learn more with a free consultation.
What to Do If You’ve Been Accused of Embezzlement
It’s understandable to be scared, angry, or stressed that you have been accused of a crime, especially one as serious as embezzlement. It’s important to keep in mind, though, that cooler heads prevail and that anything you do could be held against you later down the line.
Steps that you should take after being accused of embezzlement include:
- Calling a lawyer as soon as possible. Chances are good that this is your first time dealing with embezzlement charges. It’s not our first time, though. A criminal defense lawyer will know what to do and say to keep your record clean and make sure the prosecutors don’t have ammunition to use against you in court.
- Don’t talk to the police, investigators, or prosecutors by yourself. You have the right to an attorney and you should use it. The prosecutor may try to twist your words against you, but a lawyer can keep that from happening.
- Do not do anything on social media. The same rule for talking to the police goes for social media as well. Anything that you post, whether it’s a Facebook comment, Instagram story, or tweet, can be grabbed by the prosecutor and used against you. It’s best to avoid social media altogether.
- Gather and keep any evidence you might have. You should try to collect any receipts, emails, texts, or anything else that could be used by your own lawyer to defend you.
Embezzlement cases can be complicated, but the good news is that you don’t have to go through it alone. An embezzlement lawyer in Irvine will know what steps to take and who to talk to to have the best defense possible.
For a free legal consultation with a embezzlement lawyer serving Irvine, call (310) 896-2723
Is Embezzlement a Felony or a Misdemeanor?
Whether an embezzlement conviction is charged as a felony or misdemeanor depends on the details surrounding the case. The state of California actually charges the crime differently depending on how much money was allegedly embezzled. In some cases, it is charged as petty theft, but in other cases, it is charged as grand theft.
According to California Penal Code (PC) § 487, theft of any property valued at more than $950 is grand theft. This includes embezzlement. Grand theft embezzlement is what is called a “wobbler,” which means it could be charged as either a felony or a misdemeanor, depending on the circumstances and the defendant’s criminal record.
People accused of felony grand theft embezzlement could face up to three years in jail, while people accused of misdemeanor grand theft embezzlement could face up to one year. Both charges come with fines and possible civil action.
However, if the value of the property allegedly embezzled was less than $950, it is usually considered petty theft. Petty theft embezzlement is always a misdemeanor. People charged with petty theft embezzlement could face up to six months in jail, as well as fines and possible civil action.
Because embezzlement could mean multiple levels of charge, it’s important to hire an experienced criminal defense attorney who can possibly get your charges reduced. Having a legal expert by your side could keep you from time in prison and an expensive lawsuit.
Irvine Embezzlement Lawyer Near Me (310) 896-2723
Defenses for Embezzlement in Irvine
To avoid the harsh punishments that can come with a felony conviction, your lawyer will have to gather evidence and negotiate with the prosecutor and the judge. Every case is different, so there is no one-size-fits-all defense against an embezzlement charge.
However, there are some common ways that lawyers can argue your charge down. Common defenses for embezzlement can include:
- That the property actually belonged to you, or that you genuinely believed that the property was yours to use
- That you didn’t have any fraudulent intent
- That you didn’t intend to use the property
- That the owner gave you permission to use the property, or at least that you believed you had permission from the owner
- That the property was used before you ever had access to it
It takes a skilled embezzlement attorney in Irvine to put up a strong defense. If you’re not sure what a lawyer can do to help you, you can get a free consultation with someone from our firm. One of our attorneys can meet with you to discuss your case for no up-front fee.
Talk to an Embezzlement Attorney in Irvine Today
An embezzlement charge doesn’t just mean legal consequences like jail time and fines. It also means a huge shift in your life. You could lose your current position, and having a conviction on your record doesn’t make getting a new one any easier.
The Irvine embezzlement lawyers at Simmrin Law Group want to help you. Call us or contact us online today for your FREE initial consultation with one of our attorneys. Someone from our firm is available to talk to you 24/7.