This is the third post in our series on defending embezzlement charges in Little Rock, Arkansas. Our last post discussed the difference between embezzlement and theft. It is important to understand the difference between the two offenses in order to appreciate why prosecutors take embezzlement charges so seriously. In this article we will discuss another important topic – the penalty a defendant faces after being convicted. It is important that you contact a criminal defense attorney as soon as possible if you have been charged in our state.
Arkansas’ punishment for embezzlement convictions depend on the value of the property which was stolen. At a basic level, potential sentences are as follows:
- If the property has a value of $1,000 or less then the accused will be charged with a Class A misdemeanor. This carries a maximum sentence of one year in jail and a $1,000 fine
- If the property had value between $1,000 and $5,000 then the accused will face a Class D felony. This carries a maximum sentence of six years in prison and a $10,000 fine.
- If the property had value between $5,000 and $25,000 then the defendants will be charged with a Class C felony. This carries a sentence of up to ten years in prison and a $10,000 fine.
- If the property had a value of over $25,000 then fines can be upward of $15,000 and prison time can be up to twenty years in prison as the defendant will face Category B felony charges. .
There are other situations which can bring a case into one of these sentencing ranges. For example, if building material is stolen from a permitted construction site, and has value of more than $500, then the defendant can face Category B felony charges. Examples of this would include a construction worker who takes company materials home for resale or for their personal construction projects. Also, an accused can face Category A misdemeanor charges even if the property had no inherent value as long as it had personal value to the victim.
These are not the only penalties an Arkansas defendant will face after being convicted of embezzlement. Another consequence is having a permanent criminal record. This would make it harder to gain employment, to gain professional licenses, or to pass a background check. If you are found to have violated a position of trust then there is a good chance that you would be unable to gain employment which requires such trust. It goes without saying that these consequences can have a devastating impact on one’s life well after they have served their prison time.
Contact our Little Rock embezzlement lawyers today if you have been charged. Our counsel have over twenty-five years of combined legal experience and are ready to assist you. We also handle matters in Fayetteville, Fort Smith, Springdale, Jonesboro, North Little Rock, Conway, Rogers, Pine Bluff and throughout the rest of the state.