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Elements of a New York Embezzlement Charge

The charge of embezzlement is based on grand larceny and relates to the value of the money that was taken from a person, partnership, business, company, or corporation.

These are the specific guidelines necessary to bring forward a charge of embezzlement. To further understand the specific elements associated with a New York embezzlement charge, it is imperative to contact an attorney as soon as possible. A knowledgeable New York theft lawyer can build a defense to help lessen any consequences associated with the charge.

Degrees of the Crime

If the loss is less than a thousand dollars, it would not be a felony charge but a misdemeanor. A crime valued at a thousand dollars or less is petty larceny.

If somebody embezzled in excess of a thousand dollars but not more than $3,000, that would be an E Felony, punishable for a first-time offender of up to one and a third to four years in prison. This is considered grand larceny in the fourth degree.

If the individual stole in excess of $3,000 but not greater than $50,000, that would be a D Felony, considered grand larceny in the third degree, punishable with between two and a third and seven years in prison.

If somebody embezzled in excess of $50,000 but not greater than a million, that is a C Felony, grand larceny in the second degree, and is punishable with between five and 15 years in prison.

Finally, grand larceny in the first degree is for money stolen in excess of a million dollars. This is punishable with between eight and a third to 25 years in prison.

The elements of a New York embezzlement charge are dollar based. Depending on the amount of money stolen, an individual could be facing varying degrees of the crime.

Determining Sentencing

There are a few elements that come into play when determining the sentence in an individual’s New York City embezzlement charge. The value of the theft and the amount of the theft in aggregate directly impacts the sentence.

For example, if a person stole $800,000 or $75,000, technically, it is the same crime of grand larceny in the second degree, but they are very different. The prosecutors and the court will look at whether the defendant committed this crime once, twice, three times, or more over the course of a year or over five years.

Further, they will determine if it was committed in the process of committing other offenses or other crimes, i.e., forgeries, falsifying business records, or scheme to defraud. They will need to understand what the defendant was doing and how often they were doing it in terms of the crime.

Lastly, it is crucial that a lawyer uncover whether the defendant’s actions pushed the company into bankruptcy, if it caused them to have financial issues of their own, or if they are unable to complete the jobs they were contracted to complete.

Characteristics of the Charge

Embezzlement is almost always charged in the corporate or business context.

A person is not embezzling when they steal from a store, unlawfully transfers money, or deposits a fake check. Embezzlement is used in the context of a business, whether that business is a bank, a restaurant, construction contractor, or a hedge fund.

It does not matter whether the crime was a taking or falsifying of an invoice, reporting certain income and pocketing it, not reporting certain transactions or altering transactions or records, or saying that a person is purchasing something that they never purchased and then taking the money.

The common nexus or the common link between all embezzlement is that it is a theft in the context of a business or an account of another person.

Benefit of an Attorney

All of these elements of an embezzlement charge in New York help determine the individual’s sentence if they were to be convicted.

The consequences ultimately result from the person’s actions on other people. However, the most important element of the charge is the dollar amount. An embezzlement in excess of $1 million is far greater than one in the tens of thousands of dollars.

An individual will want the attorney that is handling their embezzlement charge to handle their sentencing. The lawyer should be familiar with the jurisdiction, the law, the allegations, and with the evidence being used in the defense.

An experienced lawyer should be prepared to articulate to a judge and DA why their client’s behavior should be mitigated, explain who this individual is, and challenge the veracity of the things that their client is accused of doing.

When an individual is set for sentencing, a lawyer should put a package together in advance to get as much leniency as they can. Very often, an attorney can negotiate with the DA in advance. It is imperative to never go into a sentencing hearing blind.

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