Finding employment that you like is not an easy feat. Whether you like your job or hate it, you still work hard. Then, it happens, your employer accuses you of pilfering assets. You are fired and even end up facing criminal charges. What can you do?
Pilfering, stealing, embezzlement — whatever you want to call it — is a serious crime in Indiana. The consequences can be quite severe if prosecuting attorneys obtain a conviction. In order to do this, they will have to prove that certain elements exist in your case.
If you face accusations of embezzling from your company or clients, it means that you, a person trusted to handle assets, allegedly used those assets for your own personal gain. Pilfering cases often involve money, but they may also involve computers, company cars or other valuable property.
Embezzlement schemes are most often seen in corporate settings, though, it can happen at any place of employment. It may be something that happens in one shot or slowly over time. A few methods used to embezzle money or property include:
- Ponzi schemes
- Falsifying records
- Fraudulent billing
- Paying non-existent employees
This list can really get quite extensive as there are many ways to pilfer assets.
Elements in an embezzlement case
There are at least four elements that must exist for prosecuting attorneys to successfully achieve conviction in an embezzlement case. They are:
- Proof of a fiduciary relationship
- Proof property was acquired through the relationship
- Proof of property transfer — either to oneself or someone else
- Proof property was intentionally taken
Establishing that these elements exist really is a tall order. The evidence has to be clear and cannot leave any room for doubt.
Embezzling assets from a place of employment or directly from clients can have consequences that are far reaching. As so many people stand to get hurt because of such actions, the state will not be lenient when it comes to handing down penalties if you are ultimately convicted.
Thankfully, you have the right to defend yourself against pilfering charges. There are various defense options that may work for your case. An experienced criminal defense attorney can review the facts of your case and help you pursue a course of action that will help you achieve the best outcome possible.