Embezzlement

Portland Embezzlement Defense Attorney | Maine Embezzlement Lawyer

Embezzlement is referred to as a type of “theft by deception.” It’s the act of misappropriating funds that are put in a person’s trust but those funds belong to someone else or an employer. Employee theft is classified as embezzlement. 18 U.S. Code Chapter 31 gives a very broad definition of embezzlement and has a list of codes that address such acts as:

  • Theft by a bank examiner
  • Misapplication of funds by bank officers or employees
  • Receiving a loan by a court officer
  • A banker receiving an unauthorized deposit of public money
  • Possessing tools and materials for making counterfeit money
  • Theft of artwork, livestock, or medical products
  • Embezzlement involving healthcare
  • Theft of medical products

This is just some of the items that constitute embezzlement. The act can also include bribery, receiving stolen property, and embezzlement from an employee benefit plan. The list can go on. Richard Berne is a Portland embezzlement defense attorney who is also a federal defense lawyer who knows how the courts work, knows the law, and who will aggressively fight for you.

Embezzlement As A Federal Offense

Federal law can trump state law when the federal government has jurisdiction. In some cases, embezzlement can be a state matter, a federal matter, or both. Federal court is very different from state court in that the federal government has vast resources and, if convicted, the penalties are always harsher. This is why you need an attorney who practices in federal court.

How the punishment is determined is by considering the value of the property involved and the type. If the victim belongs to a specialty class, such as the elderly or disabled, then that’s an aggravating factor that can cause the penalties to become harsher if convicted.

Maine Embezzlement Penalties

In Maine, money or property worth less than $500 can result in up to one year in jail a fine of up to $1,000 or both. If the property is valued more than $500 but less than $1,000, the penalty is up to three years in prison and/or a $2,000 fine. If the property is valued at more than $1,000 but less than $10,000, the penalty is up to five years in prison and/or a fine of up to $5,000.

By fighting the charges with a qualified advocate in your corner, you have a better chance at reducing the penalties, having the case dismissed, or even being acquitted.

Contact A Portland Embezzlement Defense Attorney

If you are being investigated for embezzlement or you have been charged, having a knowledgeable defense attorney by your side can make a difference in the outcome of your case. To learn more about how the Law Office of Richard Berne can help you, call 207-871-7770 to request a free consultation.