If you think you may be in legal trouble, there is no time to waste. I answer calls and emails 24/7. Call Jordan Redavid now at 305-938-9939. Read on to learn more about embezzlement charges and penalties, as well as how I can defend you before and during trial.
What are the penalties for embezzlement in Florida?
The consequences of embezzlement in Florida vary significantly with the amount of money in question, but often include:
- imprisonment and parole;
- monetary fines;
- loss of professional license; and
- suspension of driver’s license.
Under state law, embezzlement may be charged as a misdemeanor or felony of various degrees. The primary factor is the value of the money or property stolen. However, there are certain factors that increase the penalties even for lesser amounts, such as theft of controlled substances and theft from a dwelling. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the basic guidelines for how embezzlement charges are determined.
|Value of embezzled property||Jail/prison time||Fines|
|First degree felony||$100,000 or more||Up to 30 years||Up to $10,000|
|Second degree felony||$20,000 to $100,000||Up to 15 years||Up to $10,000|
|Third degree felony||$300 to $20,00||Up to 5 years||Up to $5,000|
|First degree misdemeanor||$100 to $300||Up to 1 year||Up to $1,000|
|Second degree misdemeanor||Less than $100||Up to 60 days||Up to $500|
What defenses can a good embezzlement defense lawyer rely on?
Embezzlement is a serious charge, and authorities will aggressively prosecute accused embezzlers. But every case has a defense. Some of the most important potential defenses against a charge of embezzlement are:
Insufficient Evidence. As with any crime, a prosecutor’s embezzlement case hinges on the quantity and quality of evidence against the accused. Each case is different, and some may have relatively little solid evidence against the accused.
Absence of Intent. Embezzlement only occurs if the accused intends to steal the property of another. If the accused could reasonably have thought they were simply doing their job or had a legal claim on the property, or if they did nothing to conceal their actions, these are possible defenses.
Duress. This refers to the belief that some harm may come to you if you do not commit a crime. For instance, an alleged embezzler may genuinely believe that if they do not participate in a scheme hatched by their boss, they will lose their job.
Entrapment. Entrapment occurs when law enforcement leads someone to commit a crime they would not otherwise have committed. Investigators often set up “stings” that give someone the opportunity to commit a crime, and in these cases, entrapment is one possible defense. Entrapment is often a gray area, because we cannot know for sure what an alleged criminal would have done absent government action. But it can be enough to put doubt in the minds of jurors.
A good embezzlement defense attorney knows early on which defensive strategies are strongest in any particular case. I can persuasively argue those defenses both to prosecutors, for dismissal of charges and plea negotiations, and to juries at trial.