Federal embezzlement sentencing follows a specific process. Once a finding of guilt is entered through a guilty plea or a finding of guilt by a jury or judge, a probation officer interviews the defendant. The officer gathers and verifies important information about the offense and the defendant that is included in the presentence report sent to the judge and both parties. At a sentencing hearing, the judge then weighs various factors to determine a final set of penalties. Factors impacting DC federal embezzlement sentencing may include the severity of the offense, the monetary value of the embezzlement, and the number of victims.
In embezzlement cases, the guidelines calculation usually involves an estimation of the loss amount which is the money involved in the offense in two different ways. One is whether the amount lost was intended in the case. The other is the actual loss amount. The guidelines dictate how the loss amount is calculated. The intended loss amount which is supposed to be used is usually higher than the actual loss amount, and that becomes an issue of sentencing. The defense may argue that the actual loss amount should also be considered by the judge when calculating a sentence, not just the intended loss amount.
In embezzlement cases, another factor considered is the number of victims in the case. There is an enhancement on the guidelines for more than 10 victims. Another factor is the person’s role in the case that could result in an enhancement or potential reduction of the guidelines. If the individual is an organizer or a leader in the embezzlement, there could be an enhancement. If they played a minimal and minor role, there could be a reduction in the sentence.
Other factors that are considered are the person’s role in the offense. If a person played the role of an organizer or leader, there is a potential enhancement under the guidelines. If they played a minimal or minor role, there is a potential reduction in the guidelines. The number of victims may play a part if there are more than 10 victims. There may be an enhancement when a substantial portion of the activity occurred overseas.
A variety of strategies are used by federal embezzlement sentencing lawyers to help influence sentencing proceedings client’s benefit. An attorney may try to get the sentencing guidelines calculations to move a little bit more favorably by challenging the specific offense characteristics and also the loss amount, for example. Sometimes, those challenges occur during negotiations with the prosecutor before someone takes a guilty plea and sometimes it takes place after trial at a sentencing hearing.
Separate and apart from the guidelines, other things could be done. For example, once a judge makes a sentencing guidelines final calculation, the guideline range as determined is not mandatory. A judge can go above or below the range. The judge considers certain factors when making a final decision after a guidelines range is established.
When advocating for a client for a sentence that is lower than what guidelines recommend, the lawyer gathers letters or testimony from the client’s friends, family, colleagues, teachers, and officers and fellow soldiers from the military. The lawyer conducts an investigation on their client’s life to present the most positive aspects of their life to a judge.
If you are facing federal sentencing for embezzlement charges, you need serious legal representation. An experienced attorney who understands the factors impacting DC federal embezzlement sentencing could help preserve your future and lessen the negative consequences of a conviction.
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