Criminal charges of any kind are a serious threat to your future. Regardless of the specific charges against you, a conviction could lead to a permanent mark on your criminal record, and it could impact your future opportunities. It is smart to take your situation seriously and work for a beneficial outcome by developing a strong defense strategy.
A strong defense strategy is particularly important in cases involving white-collar crime, such as embezzlement. While these cases lack an element of violence, they are serious criminal allegations. A conviction can result in time behind bars, loss of your personal reputation and more. One of the most beneficial steps you can take is to reach out for defense guidance as soon as possible.
The elements of an embezzlement charge
Embezzlement is a type of white-collar crime, which are crimes committed with the intention of some type of financial gain. With this specific type of crime, the person who allegedly committed the crime did not take money unlawfully, but instead misused or neglected to return money of which he or she was in lawful possession. An example of embezzlement is a financial advisor taking his clients’ funds or using them for his or her personal gain.
A person may have the right to access funds for a specific purpose, but when he or she uses that money for personal reasons, it is embezzlement. An important element of embezzlement is proving the person took the property with the intent of permanently depriving the owner by doing the following:
- Refusing to return it
- Selling the assets
- Giving it away
- Using all the funds
If accused of the crime of embezzlement, a smart defense approach is to challenge the evidence against you. The prosecution will have to prove the existence of a fiduciary relationship, acquisition of the property and intentional theft of the property.
Your rights as a defendant
No matter how strong the case against you may seem, you have the right to fight back and seek to protect your future. You have the right to a presumption of innocence and the right to vigorously defend yourself against any type of criminal charge.
You may find it helpful to discuss your defense needs with an experienced North Carolina attorney who understands the intricacies of an embezzlement case and can help you move forward with the right approach to your defense.