Embezzlement is the fraudulent appropriation of money or property belonging to another, legally obtained, and used for any purpose not intended or authorized by its owner. Embezzlement does not require a distinct act of taking, but only a fraudulent appropriation, conversion, or use of the money or property. Embezzlement is also called employee fraud or employee theft, and occurs when a person in a position of trust such as an employee, manager, accountant, or even a CEO, transfers money or property entrusted to them for personal use. Examples of embezzlement in Oklahoma are taking money, credit card fraud, falsifying invoices, taking inventory or supplies, or even falsifying hourly time cards. Embezzlement is considered a white collar crime, but it is punished severely under Oklahoma criminal law.
If your employer or supervisor has stated that they suspect you of embezzlement, or if you believe you may soon be charged with embezzlement, it is important that you immediately contact a Tulsa Oklahoma Embezzlement Lawyer to defend yourself and to protect your valuable legal rights. If your employer, a private investigator, or even the police want to ask you questions or ask you to make a statement, it is critically important that you remain silent and decline to make a statement without an attorney present. Statements you make to anyone other than your Tulsa Embezzlement Lawyer will put you in a dangerous situation. Any statements, whether verbal or written, that you make to your employer, an investigator, or the police WILL be used against you.
Penalties for Embezzlement in Oklahoma
The mere allegation of embezzlement, to say nothing of a conviction, can have devastating consequences on your employment prospects, your professional license, your personal reputation, your permanent record, and your family. Embezzlement can be charged as a felony or a misdemeanor. Anyone convicted of embezzlement faces imprisonment, fines, mandatory work hours, and restitution. There are different punishment ranges depending upon the value of the property embezzled:
► If the value of the property embezzled is less than $500, the charge is a misdemeanor that carries up to one year in the county jail and a $1,000 fine, plus restitution.
► If the value of the property embezzled is more than $500, but less than $1,000, the charge is a felony that carries up to one year in the county jail and a $5,000 fine, plus restitution.
► If the value of the property embezzled is more than $1,000, but less than $25,000, the charge is a felony that carries up to five years in prison and a $5,000 fine, plus restitution.
► If the value of the property embezzled is $25,000 or more, the charge is a felony that carries up to ten years in prison and a $10,000 fine, plus restitution.
Contact an Embezzlement Attorney in Tulsa Oklahoma
It is important that you contact an Embezzlement Attorney in Tulsa Oklahoma who has experience defending clients accused of embezzlement in order to get the best result. An attorney who is not familiar with defending embezzlement cases may not grasp how to get the charges reduced or even dismissed. In some situations, it may be possible to negotiate with the victim BEFORE criminal charges are filed and work out a settlement agreement that prevents criminal charges from even being filed. Tulsa Embezzlement Lawyer Rob Henson is highly qualified and has the experience, as well as the proven case results, to defend individuals facing embezzlement charges in Tulsa and throughout northeast Oklahoma. Call today for a free, confidential consultation to discuss your case and the options that are available to you.