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Embezzlement is defined as wrongfully using another person’s money or property for personal gain. Most allegations of embezzling are made by an employer against an employee, vender, business partner or independent contractor.
Theft from charities and non-profit organizations can also be classified as embezzlement.While embezzlement is punished as a theft crime in Texas, the charge differs from common larceny offenses because alleged offenders accused of embezzling often had legal access to money or property without legal ownership of it.
Many high-profile cases of financial misappropriation result in federal charges, but most embezzlement cases are prosecuted under state law. Embezzlement charges under Texas law including serious penalties, including a lengthy imprisonment sentence or a steep fine.
If you are under investigation or already charged with a crime of embezzling funds from your employer, then immediately retain experienced legal counsel. The San Antonio criminal defense attorneys at Goldstein, Goldstein, Hilley & Orr can fight to get the criminal charges you are facing significantly reduced or completely dismissed.
In some cases, we can negotiate a repayment plan in a civil case with the employer with a promise that the case will not be prosecuted as a crime in state or federal court.
Gerry Goldstein and Cynthia Orr are both Board Certified in Criminal Law and Criminal Appellate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. Van Hilley has served as the President of the San Antonio Bar Association and Chairman of the United States District Court Magistrate Selection Committee for the San Antonio Division. Don Flanary serves on the Board of Directors for the Texas Criminal Defense Lawyers Association and the San Antonio Criminal Defense Lawyers Association.
Our lawyers can review your case and help you understand all of your legal options. Call 210-226-1463 or send us an online contact form right now to take advantage of a free, confidential consultation.
State law in Texas does not have a specific statute dedicated to embezzlement. Under Texas Penal Code § 31.02, crimes of this nature have been consolidated to be included among theft offenses.
As a result, the classification of an embezzlement crime and possible penalties are dependent upon the amount of money involved. Texas Penal Code § 31.03(e) establishes the following classifications and punishments, depending on the value of the property that was allegedly embezzled:
In certain cases, alleged offenders can face increased punishment. Depending on the alleged embezzlement victim or actions an alleged offender may have taken, Texas Penal Code § 31.03(f) establishes that punishments can be enhanced if an alleged offense involves any of the following:
Under this statute, a punishment can be increased to the next higher category. This means, for example, an offense classified as a Class A misdemeanor can become a state jail felony.
Texas Penal Code | Title 7, Chapter 31 — You can review the full text of the theft chapter of the Texas Penal Code. In addition to theft classifications, you can also learn more about the definitions of terms used in this section of the Penal Code. You can also learn how property value is determined and what defenses are allowable or forbidden.
Attorney General of Texas | Charities and Nonprofits: Enforcement — The Office of the Attorney General has oversight authority for more than 50,000 active charitable organizations as well as countless trust entities. This section of the Attorney General website discusses the Attorney General's responsibilities, types of problems the Attorney General frequently investigates, and types of cases the Attorney General does not generally investigate. You can also file a complaint on this website.
If you were arrested or suspect that you might be under investigation for alleged embezzlement in Texas, it will be in your best interest to immediately seek legal representation. Goldstein, Goldstein, Hilley & Orr has been aggressively defending clients in San Antonio and surrounding areas of Bexar County since 1968.
Like most white collar crimes, embezzlement charges carry stiff consequences. Let our criminal defense attorneys in San Antonio see how we can help you by calling 210-226-1463 to schedule a free consultation.