If you are being charged with embezzlement or fraud, you’ll want to know the differences between the two and what it could mean in terms of fines and sentencing. After being charged with employee fraud attorney will be able to fight aggressively for your rights so that the charges against you can be reduced or even dropped.(also called ), we recommend calling an attorney as soon as possible to represent your case. An
Differences between Embezzlement and Fraud
While fraud and embezzlement share similar elements, embezzlement is more narrowly specified under the law. Fraud is a crime where a person intentionally deceives someone to take property of value. Keep in mind that property of value can also include something nonphysical like trade secrets.
- Asset misappropriation
- Accounting fraud
- Bribery and corruption
- Payroll fraud
- Vendor fraud
Embezzlement is a specific type ofwhere you were entrusted to take care of someone else’s property of value and instead used it for your own personal gain and use. For example, a stockbroker is responsible for managing investments and would be guilty of embezzlement if they used their clients’ money for themselves.
A person who embezzles may hide their theft by taking out small amounts of money over an extended period of time. In a corporate setting, a person who embezzles may hide their theft by falsifying records or writing payroll checks to employees that don’t exist.
How the Prosecution Can Prove Embezzlement
To prove embezzlement, the prosecution needs to prove that you were trusted and relied on for taking care of someone else’s property. This is called a fiduciary relationship. For example, payroll clerks have a fiduciary relationship with employees because they are responsible for depositing employment tax. The prosecution must also prove that the property in your possession came from the assets you were responsible for managing.
The prosecution needs the following types of evidence to prove embezzlement:
- Someone trusted and relied on you to manage property (fiduciary relationship).
- You attained property by betraying fiduciary relationship.
- You took ownership or transferred ownership to someone else.
- Your actions were intentional.
Penalties for Embezzlement
The penalties for embezzlement can include paying a fine, giving back the money (restitution), or even serving time in prison. Thediffer based on how much was stolen. Keep in mind that embezzlement can be prosecuted as either a criminal fraud or civil fraud.
How to Defend Against Embezzlement Charges
An employer cannot use illegal methods to prove an employee is embezzling. This means that even if you are suspected of embezzling, you are still entitled to your legal rights as an employee. If your legal rights were violated, we recommend getting in touch with a fraud defense attorney near you.
Your attorney may also be able to argue that there is not sufficient evidence to show that you were entrusted with the property you are accused of stealing. If this is the case, your defense attorney could get the embezzlement charges dropped.
The East Lansing embezzlement and fraud attorneys at Foster & Harmon PC will fight aggressively to make sure your case has the best outcome. If you are interested in hiring one of our experienced fraud attorneys, be sure to call us for your free legal consultation at (517) 337-4600.