When money goes missing from a business or during financial transactions, individuals typically hunger to find the one who filched it. While understandable, this curiosity can lead to false accusations that can ruin an accused individual's life. White collar crimes are those that involve financial transactions such as money laundering, identity theft and counterfeiting. Since penalties for these offenses can be quite severe, those who are accused of white collar crimes should vigorously fight the charges they face.
One such individual is a former South Carolina lottery official who is in hot water after being charged with embezzlement. According to police, the man stole more than $10,000 over a two year period by exploiting his financial position with the state lottery. It is alleged that the ex-official manipulated invoices which caused funds not to be collected from some retailers. The man, it is claimed, then contacted those retailers and had them deposit money into an account that he ultimately controlled. The account had nearly $250,000 in it.
South Carolina law stipulates that embezzlement of public funds in excess of $10,000 is a felony and results, upon conviction, in a fine in the court's discretion and imprisonment of not more than 10 years. These penalties affect not only a convicted individual's pocketbook and freedom, but may also affect his life well after he is released from prison. A convicted felon may have trouble getting a job, finding a place to live and voting.
Therefore, an accused individual should challenge charges of illegal involvement in a financial transaction, or in some instances, negotiate repayment to the business entity. A competent attorney is helpful in such cases fight charges and protect accused individuals from false convictions. By doing so, an experienced attorney will prevent the loss of money from blinding the eyes of justice.
Source: The Herald, "Ex-SC lottery worker charged with embezzlement," Amanda Kelly, Nov. 27, 2012