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Embezzlement can have serious consequences in New Jersey

Embezzlement is a common white collar crime. It involves the misuse or theft of money entrusted to you by others, such as investors, or that belonged to your employer. Many innocent people have been charged with embezzlement over the course of the last few decades.

Sometimes, another employee or even the company owner is attempting to make someone else look responsible for crimes he or she committed. Other times, what may look like embezzlement to an employer is actually only an accounting error or some kind of honest mistake that resulted in financial losses.

Whatever the circumstances, if you are facing embezzlement charges, you need an experienced criminal defense attorney who understands embezzlement and theft laws in New Jersey. Not all criminal defense attorneys have the experience you'll need when it comes to white collar crimes such as embezzlement. The right legal advocacy can help you show the courts that your charges resulted from a mistake or internal issue, if that is the case. If it isn't, your lawyer can help create a robust defense strategy.

The alleged amount embezzled will decide the charges

The state of New Jersey determines the criminal charges associated with embezzlement based on the amount of property stolen and what form it takes. If the value of what was taken is less than $200, penalties could include repayment of that amount, as well as a fine of up to $1,000. For amounts over $200 but less than $500, penalties include restitution, a fine of up to $10,000 and up to 18 months in prison. For amounts of more than $500 and less than $75,000, you could be facing restitution, a fine of $15,000 or double the value of what was taken, and between three and five years in prison.

For property or money worth more than $75,000, the penalties include restitution paid to the victim, a fine of as much as $150,000 or double the amount embezzled, as well as between five and ten years in prison. The greater the amount you're accused of embezzling, the greater the financial penalty and potential prison term. If you hope to fight the charges or negotiate a lower penalty, you need the advice and advocacy of an experienced white collar crime attorney.

A solid defense

A public defender probably won't have much experience with embezzlement or white collar crimes. Even worse, these lawyers are often overwhelmed with a massive caseload. A private, experienced defense attorney is the best way to mount a solid defense against the charges you are facing.

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