Embezzlement is a certain type of property theft and is a serious crime. According to Colorado Code 18-8-407, if you are entrusted to protect the financials of public property, embezzlement is defined as:
"Every public servant who lawfully or unlawfully comes into possession of any public moneys or public property of whatever description, being the property of the state or of any political subdivision of the state, and who knowingly converts any of such public moneys or property to his own use or to any use other than the public use authorized by law is guilty of embezzlement of public property. Every person convicted under the provisions of this section shall be forever thereafter ineligible and disqualified from being a member of the general assembly of this state or from holding any office of trust or profit in this state"
If you are entrusted to take care of someone else's money, but instead use it for your own financial gain, you will be charged with embezzlement. The main point to be aware of is that the defendant must have legal access to the money, not legal ownership of it. The main difference from stealing and embezzling, is that embezzling involves the defendant being in a position of trust over the money.
Embezzlement happens in a variety of situations: - Bank employees have legal access to a client's money - Employee of a company stealing funds that belong to that company - A family member caring for a relative - An investment firm employee handling an investor's money
According to Colorado law, embezzlement is punished based on the circumstance and penalties range from a $500 fine to up to 12 years in prison.
If you have been charged with any sort of embezzlement-related offense, contact us today. We specialize in white collar crimes and will be your strongest ally. 719-227-0230.