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What is Embezzlement?

California Penal Code § 476 criminalizes embezzlement, which occurs when a person unlawfully takes property that has been entrusted to him/her by someone else. It is sometimes also referred to as employee theft.

To make a case that a defendant committed embezzlement or employee theft, a prosecutor must establish the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:
(1) An owner entrusted his/her property to the defendant;
(2) The owner did so because he/she trusted the defendant;
(3) The defendant fraudulently used the property for his/her own benefit; and
(4) The defendant intended to deprive the owner when he/she used it.

Penalties for Embezzlement

Embezzlement may be charged as a misdemeanor or felony. When the amount at issue is up to $950, it is charged as misdemeanor Petty Theft pursuant to California Penal Code § 484 and is punishable by up to six months in county jail. When the amount at issue is more than $950, it is charged as felony Grand Theft pursuant to California Penal Code § 487.

Irvine, California Embezzlement Attorney

The first and most important decision a defendant or anyone facing an embezzlement investigation must make is to retain the right defense attorney. Responding to an embezzlement investigation or charges requires a proactive, coordinated, and proactive approach. White collar federal defense attorney Peter Hardin has a long and outstanding track record of establishing clear communication with federal law enforcement agents and prosecutors and responding swiftly and accurately to search warrants and subpoenas. Because Peter Hardin has prosecuted and defended against criminal cases, such as embezzlement, for nearly 20 years, he understands not just the law, but the way federal authorities investigate cases and the prosecutorial tactics that follow. It is essential that anyone who may be under investigation for embezzlement, or who has been charged with embezzlement, act quickly to build a strong defense and protect their rights. Contact Peter Hardin now for a free and confidential consultation.

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