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Louisiana Embezzlement Attorney
Embezzlement Attorney in Shreveport, Bossier City, Monroe, & Ruston, LA
Embezzlement is a white-collar crime that often occurs in a corporate or workplace setting. This crime could involve an extended investigation that is painfully personal and disruptive to your everyday life. Those suspected of committing embezzlement should seek out a seasoned Louisiana defense attorney before charges get levied against them. A good defense is critical if facing such a severely punished crime, and those who get accused need to ensure the protection of their rights and freedom during the investigative process.
What is Embezzlement?
Embezzlement is a theft involving an individual taking money or property they were in charge of safekeeping. This violation of trust often occurs between employees and their employers or employees and their customers, like those in a banking situation. These crimes have varying levels of punishment, depending on a number of factors, such as:
- The amount of money or property stolen
- If the defrauded victim has a special status like disability or age
- Previous criminal history
This is not a definitive list of situations that may affect sentencing when convicted of this crime, but regardless, Louisiana has harsh penalties for embezzlers.
Louisiana Embezzlement Law
When charged with embezzlement by the state of Louisiana, the actual language of your violation will read “theft by misappropriation without violence.” Revised Statute 14:67 (A) demonstrates a clear difference between embezzlement from other, more violent types of theft like armed robbery or burglary.
There are three aspects to this law that the prosecution must prove to convict the defendant:
- The defendant took property without either victim’s consent or by way of fraudulent practices
- The theft occurred without violence
- And the intention was to take the victim’s property permanently
Proving all three of these conditions could result in a conviction, and the penalties are very harsh since embezzlement is usually a felony in the state of Louisiana.
Penalties for Embezzlement in Louisiana
A misdemeanor is possible if the total value of the stolen property is under $300. Still, the punishment is severe; one could face up to six months in prison and/or fines of up to $1,000. Theft convictions of this nature that demonstrated stolen property values of more than $300 will bring up to ten years in prison and/or a fine of up to $3,000.
In addition to fines and jail time, punishments may also include:
- Community service
- Job restrictions
- Loss of professional licensing and certifications
- Other sentences deemed appropriate by the court
When a defendant faces embezzlement charges for multiple occurrences, each act will get counted separately, and the penalties added together. This could mean nearly a lifetime in prison for someone who gets convicted. If found guilty, one is also required to disclose their felony record when applying for employment or having a background check performed.
Federal Charges for Embezzlement
Many times this crime falls under federal jurisdiction as the theft occurred as a commercial transaction. Enforcement of national securities, trade, and exchange laws against embezzlement is a serious situation with severe consequences as well, which are similar to that of state punishments.
Defendants often face charges from both state and federal government agencies, which means double the trouble, court case length, and attorney costs. The severity of this crime and the actions taken by the courts should encourage anyone facing this situation to seek a seasoned defense attorney right away.
Louisiana Embezzlement Defense Attorney
The salacious nature of embezzlement cases makes them prime time news material, which will damage your reputation and possibly compromise your chance at a fair trial. Limiting your media exposure is a crucial function of your Louisiana defense attorney, as are efforts to minimize the charges you face and negotiate for the best outcome possible in your situation.
Ultimately, your rights, reputation, and freedom are at stake when on trial for embezzlement. You could face decades in jail and fines that cost thousands of dollars, or both, for this type of theft. Louisiana laws also include hard labor for some crimes, and all of this depends upon the circumstances surrounding your case.
As a member of the Louisiana Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, attorney Eric G. Johnson has helped state residents with criminal cases for more than 25 years. His extensive case experience and successful defense and negotiation of state and federal embezzlement charges are essential to protect your future. Speak with Eric G. Johnson as soon as possible to discuss your case and understand the full extent of the charges against you. Contact his office today at (318) 225-8092 or schedule a free consultation online.