DC Embezzlement Sentencing Lawyer

While an acquittal may be the primary goal for any defense attorney, it is always best to prepare for the worst. A DC embezzlement sentencing attorney could help individuals understand which penalties they may be facing for their alleged offenses and how to defend against them. If an acquittal is not possible, a dedicated attorney could negotiate the sentencing and fight tirelessly for your rights.

Sentencing for Embezzlement Cases in Washington DC

Embezzlement cases are sentenced under the sentencing laws for theft in the DC code. These cases are not always sentenced federally. Local DC law, which is prosecuted as a local offense by federal prosecutors, could prosecute a person for a number of different kinds of theft. One of the many forms of theft includes embezzlement. The minimum and maximum penalties for embezzlement are the same as the minimum and maximum penalties for other kinds of DC theft offenses.

Penalties for Misdemeanor Theft

A person who is facing charges of theft of an item or property of any value could be facing charges of misdemeanor theft. Misdemeanor theft carries a maximum penalty of 180 days in jail, maximum fines of $1,000, or both. There is also a mandatory court cost contribution that ranges between $50 and $250. In the event that a person is convicted of theft of property or money that is valued at $1,000 or more, the person faces the possibility of being convicted of a felony.

Penalties for Felony Theft

Felony theft carries higher penalties than misdemeanor theft. A person convicted of felony theft could receive up to 10 years in prison, fines up to $25,000 or both. If a person has a prior conviction for felony theft, then a second conviction carries a mandatory minimum of one year in prison. This means that a person convicted of first-degree theft for a second time is required by law to serve a minimum of one year in prison. These minimums and maximums do not necessarily mean that a person convicted of one of these kinds of theft charges will automatically get the maximum penalty.

Voluntary Sentencing Guidelines

Washington DC’s voluntary sentencing guidelines establish suggested ranges of penalties that are quite a bit lower than the maximum possible penalty that a person could receive. The sentencing guidelines take into account the person’s prior criminal history to make a range of suggestions that tell the sentencing judge roughly how they should be sentenced in their case. This method is an alternative to automatically charging the maximum or minimum penalty. A DC attorney could explain how sentencing guidelines affect a person’s embezzlement case.

Comparing DC and Federal Level Sentencing for Embezzlement

Federal sentencing guidelines and DC sentencing guidelines take into account a person’s criminal history and the severity of the offense to determine a range of possible sentences that may be appropriate in a specific situation.

Federal sentencing guidelines take a higher number of factors into account to determine the sentencing level that is recommended in a person’s case. This may include adding or subtracting points based on a person’s acceptance of responsibility and whether they pled guilty without going to trial. The embezzlement sentencing guidelines could change depending on the amount of money or value that was embezzled. This is in contrast to DC sentencing guidelines, which only distinguish between theft of $1,000 or greater for felony theft. Anything lower is considered a misdemeanor theft. The guidelines in DC will not add or subtract points based on the amount that was embezzled. Federal sentencing guidelines could increase a person’s range of penalties for increased amounts of money embezzled. This may result in the defendant facing more severe penalties under the federal sentencing guidelines for embezzlement compared to the DC sentencing guidelines.

Negotiating for Lower Penalties

Sentencing is very important in a person’s case. Not every criminal case leads to a trial and results in an acquittal. Theft or embezzlement cases could result in negotiated agreements with the prosecutor’s office that may lead to reduced charges or the possibility of much lower penalties compared to the risk of going to trial. Negotiation of resolutions is a vital part of any embezzlement sentencing attorney in DC’s work that could lead to charges being reduced and the ranges of potential sentences being lowered. This may be the difference between a person going to prison or walking out of the courtroom as a free person. Presenting the whole picture of a defendant before a judge’s sentences and effectively advocating for lower penalties and reduced charges may be just as important as preparing arguments and defenses for a trial. Contrary to the popular belief that trials are more common, the majority of criminal cases result in negotiated resolutions.

A DC Embezzlement Conviction Attorney Could Help

Having a defense attorney who understands the best way to advocate at sentencing for reduced penalties may be imperative. An individual that is seeking legal representation for a theft or embezzlement case is recommended to discuss potential trial strategies. They should also discuss various potential arguments and their effectiveness in reducing penalties in the event they need to be sentenced before a judge. Call a DC embezzlement sentencing lawyer today for advice.