Hire a Theft Lawyer for Your Theft, Embezzlement, or Fraud Charges

Theft, embezzlement, and fraud charges can come with severe ramifications. A conviction can lead to anything from hefty fines to lengthy prison sentences. If you face charges, you need to consult with an experienced embezzlement lawyer who can advise you on your case and the next steps.

Contact Zoukis Consulting Group if you find yourself facing a theft or fraud charge. Our theft defense lawyers will explain the situation facing you and how to get the best outcome possible.

Federal Property Crimes

Besides arranging a theft defense lawyer, it’s also important to understand the precise nature of the charge facing you, the federal rules that apply, and the extent of the sentence that you could be facing if convicted.

Federal Property Crimes such as theft, receipt of stolen property, and federal fraud are covered by a manual known as the United States Sentencing Commission Guidelines Manual, in particular, §2B1.1.

A federal judge implements the guidelines. The types of federal property crimes covered by the guidelines include:

Larceny, Embezzlement, and Other Forms of Theft

Larceny is stealing personal property from another person or business, for example, stolen jewelry from another person. Embezzlement is the theft of money placed in your trust or belonging to your employer, for example, a trustee stealing funds from a trust fund.

An embezzlement lawyer will tell you how severe your crime may be treated and whether you can argue for mitigating circumstances. Then, contact an embezzlement attorney from our team to represent your case in court.

Offenses Involving Stolen Property

Offenses involving the receipt of stolen property or property crimes involve burglary or personal property theft, for example, stealing property from inside a person’s home.

A theft defense lawyer can advise you on the legal ramifications of a stolen property offense and can defend your case in court.

Property Damage or Destruction

Also known as vandalism, property damage involves the intentional destruction of personal property, for example, arson involving a vehicle.

It’s best to seek legal advice on how to claim for mitigating circumstances in the case of property damage, for example, in the instance where the damage was accidental or unintentional.

Fraud and Deceit

Federal fraud charges are brought against someone that intentionally deceives others to their own benefit, for example, by using a false credit card to pay for something or using a false driver’s license to obtain insurance.

An experienced theft defense lawyer can advise you on whether your actions warrant federal fraud charges and how to mitigate a potential sentence.

Forgery

Forgery involves creating a forged copy of an official document, signature, banknote, and even a piece of art. 

Contact a forgery lawyer to understand whether your actions constitute forgery and, if so, what the potential legal ramifications are.

Offenses that Involve Counterfeit or Altered Instruments Other than Counterfeit Bearer Obligation of the United States

These offenses involve producing fake United States currency and coins, food stamps, postage stamps, treasury bills, or bearer bonds. They can carry additional penalties if the value of the counterfeit exceeds $2,500.

How the Guidelines Calculate Fraud Offenses

The guidelines are administered according to a points-based system, and particular aspects of the crime lead to a higher number of points. If the crime is considered more severe, more points are awarded. 

Base Offense Level

First, an offense is awarded a set number of points according to the particular crime involved. For example, fraud tends to be awarded 6 points.

Size of The Loss

The offense level increases in proportion to the size of the loss in increments — two points are added for each increment. To illustrate, here are the first 5 increments in the guidelines:

•             $6,500 or less: no increase;

•             More than $6,500: add 2;

•             More than $15,000: add 4;

•             More than $40,000: add 6;

•             More than $95,000: add 8.

Characteristics of the Offense

If the offense fits other criteria, additional points will be applied to make the penalty more severe. Among others, these criteria include:

•             Number of victims: if the number of victims in the offense exceeds 10, add 2, or if the number of people who are put in substantial financial hardship exceeds 25, add 6;

•             Information seized: if the intent of the crime was to steal personal information, or if personal information was published unauthorized, add 2;

•             Defendant: If the defendant was an officer or a director of a publicly-traded company, or if they are an investment adviser, add 4.

Mitigating Circumstances

The guidelines are just that — guidelines. So, a federal judge can stray from the exact calculation produced by the guidelines if they deem their application to be inappropriate. In court, an embezzlement attorney can make a case for mitigating circumstances to reduce the severity of the offense.

Other federal judges might choose to apply the guidelines word for word, but if they choose not to, the factors they might take into consideration include:

1.          If the offense meets numerous criteria such that the sentence length is exorbitant, or

2.          If the particular defendant acted as part of a group and played a minor role compared to the other group members.

Contact a Theft Lawyer Today

Hiring a high-quality theft lawyer from the Zoukis Consulting Group could make the difference between a short sentence and a long sentence. 

We’re ready to give you a theft, receipt of stolen property, or embezzlement lawyer that presents a solid case in your favor. You can also meet with our prison consultants, who can guide you through what prison life will look like and how to get through it.

Give Zoukis Consulting Group a call today to speak to a theft lawyer and seek help from the best experts in theft, embezzlement, and fraud law.

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