Embezzlement refers to the theft of money with the intention of permanently depriving that person of the money that they have. Embezzlement is a white-collar offense, meaning that it is non-violent and financially motivated, and can have serious consequences. Federal sentences tend to be much tougher than state sentences, which is why it is important to work with a seasoned federal embezzlement attorney. If you have been charged, it is important to have your lawyer present at every stage of the process. If you want to know more about how a DC embezzlement lawyer can help with a sentencing outcome, speak with a skilled legal advocate who could fight for you.
The sentencing guidelines apply to all federal crimes. Cases sometimes end up in the Supreme Court. Because the sentencing guidelines are only advisory, the judges are not required to follow them. The key thing to know is that about 95 percent of the time, the judges impose sentences within the sentencing guideline range. The judge is likely to follow a person’s sentencing guideline. How a DC embezzlement lawyer can help with a sentencing outcome is by negotiating the plea if there is a plea and also in navigating the sentencing guidelines calculation.
The key factors in sentencing are found in the sentencing guidelines. The amount of money taken and the number of alleged victims are key factors. Larger amounts involved in the embezzlement result in the guidelines’ higher recommendation for jail. The sentencing guideline recommendations can take a person up to the 10 year maximum for embezzlement and the 20 year maximum for other types of fraud. When the amount is high enough, the guidelines could be recommending a maximum sentence for the individual.
Another factor is determining the penalties when the person accused of taking the money is in a position of trust, such as an elected official. Government officials and civil servants are included in that category. A person’s criminal history is a large factor in the sentencing guidelines. Many clients have no criminal history and were never been convicted of a crime.
An attorney can be an invaluable asset in someone’s case. For example, a person was sentenced to 14 years in jail for a Ponzi scheme and their lawyer failed to bring to the court’s attention that this individual paid back several million dollars of what was allegedly taken. This is important because the person paid the money back before it was clear there was any kind of investigation going on. Under the sentencing guidelines, the sentencing judge should reduce the amount of what was allegedly taken by the amount the person paid back. The defense lawyer did not challenge the sentencing guidelines review which should have been only in the seven to eight-year range because the person returned several million dollars.
Another issue in the case was that the government said there were more alleged victims than there were. The government made mistakes about who was put on the list as being an alleged victim. Some of the people were reimbursed and some of the names on the list were duplicates. Many issues could have been avoided if the lawyer in the earlier phases presented this evidence to the court and the parties making the sentencing guideline recommendations to the judge.
Having an experienced lawyer at the beginning of the case can be critical and having them at the sentencing hearing is also critical. How a DC embezzlement lawyer can help with a sentencing outcome is by explaining to the judge why a lesser sentence makes sense. An attorney could explain any issues about mitigation that shows why someone should get a reduced sentence. That includes efforts to pay the money back or sympathetic factors that may have led to the person being involved in the embezzlement.
The sentencing guideline calculations can be complicated, and having a defense lawyer who really knows how to manipulate them is important. A skilled lawyer’s knowledge and experience could protect individuals. The lawyer can prevent the government from using the guidelines to increase the sentence. A person wants a lawyer on their side who does everything possible to present the guidelines to give the person the lowest possible recommendation for any time of incarceration. If an individual has been charged with embezzlement, they should speak with a capable attorney that could advocate for them.