Houston Embezzlement Lawyer
If you are charged with embezzlement, your freedom and your future employment prospects are at stake. Whether you are being accused of taking money from a register in your employer’s store or the profits of a large company, embezzlement charges should be taken very seriously.
In the state of Texas, embezzlement can be a misdemeanor or felony, depending on the amount of money or goods allegedly taken. It is the acquisition of money or property with the intent to defraud the employer. Embezzlement charges include:
- Taking cash from an employer
- Taking goods or merchandise from an employer
- Directing funds from a business to your own account
- Manipulating business records to conceal theft
The Penalties for an Embezzlement Conviction
If you are facing charges of embezzlement, you also face an extended prison sentence and fines. In some cases, you may be required to refund the employer for cash or items taken. Texas law states that the theft of cash or goods under $1,500 results in a misdemeanor charge and one year in jail. Amounts exceeding $1,500 result in felony charges which carry a prison sentence of two to 99 years in prison. Those who work as public servants in Texas will be issued stricter sentences.
Defending Embezzlement Cases
An embezzlement defense lawyer can utilize several legal strategies to protect you from a conviction. The defenses against embezzlement accusations include:
- Entrapment: In certain cases, an employee can be “set up” by authorities to commit a crime that they would not have committed without interference. For example, if money is strategically placed in an area where any one could access it and you pick it up, entrapment is likely.
- Lack of evidence: If your embezzlement case goes to court, you must cannot be found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. If the evidence against you is lacking, you cannot be determined to be guilty.
- Duress: If your employer threatened to fire or harm you if you refused to participate in an embezzlement scheme, an attorney can argue a defense of duress.
- Lack of intent to commit a crime: If your charges are the result of a mistake, an attorney can argue that you did not intend to commit a crime or defraud your employer.
- Mental incapacity and insanity: A possible defense for embezzlement is insanity at the time the goods were taken or incapacity that led to you take goods from your employer. While difficult to prove, a skilled attorney can evaluate the facts of your case to determine if either of these conditions apply to you.
Most embezzlement cases can be mediated before the issue is even taken to court. This saves the employer hundreds of dollars in legal fees and saves you from criminal prosecution. The experts at the Miller Law Group can approach your employer and request mediation on your behalf.
Call a Qualified Embezzlement Attorney
Attorney Gary S. Miller will evaluate your case to create the most aggressive defense on your behalf. If you are facing an embezzlement charge in the Houston area, it is important to obtain sturdy and effective legal representation immediately.
Contact the Miller Law Group, PLLC at 713-866-6233 and a complimentary initial consultation.