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What is embezzlement?

On Behalf of | May 24, 2018 | Firm News, White Collar Crimes |

Some employees are entrusted to handle and manage the finances. In other cases, employees have limited encounters with money in the workplace. Whether an employee is tasked to handle the finances or not, much trust goes into an employee that interacts with the money coming in and out of a business. If a company winds up short, it is likely that these individuals will be looked at. However, in cases where a business is making millions or billions of dollars in revenue, it can be difficult to notice or even pinpoint where money is going once it is realized. Thus, employees could face allegations for embezzlement years down the line. Facing such criminal charges can be serious, as it can tarnish ones reputation, even harming his or her ability to maintain a career. Thus, it is vital that criminal defense strategies for these types of criminal allegation are understood.

What is embezzlement? In simple terms, this is a crime that involves the fraudulent taking of the personal property of another by someone that the property was entrusted to. The most common example of embezzlement is when there is a misappropriation of money. However, embezzlement could occur whether the accused kept the personal property or transferred it to a third party.

The white-collar crime of embezzlement evolved because thefts kept occurring but the elements of larceny could not be met because the thief in question had the right to possess the funds in question. In order to prove that embezzlement occurred, the only requirement was to show that either the employee had possession of the funds because they are required to because of their position or that they had the authority to exercise substantial control over the funds in question.

Methods of embezzlement can differ, but one commonly known method is known as skim the top. This is where the embezzler continually acquires a small amount of money over a particular time period. This method tends to reduce the chances of being caught, so it tends to be the most appealing. However, some embezzlers steal a large amount of funds at a single time, while in other instances, managers will under report income to their supervisors and keep the difference.

No matter the situation that has resulted in a person facing embezzlement charges, it is important to understand that defendants have the ability to challenge these allegations. The facts and evidence involved in the case could help a defendant prove that he or she did not commit the crime or establish a defense that could help reduce or dismiss the charges.