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Embezzlement

Nature, Property, Elements, Conversion Of Property, Further ReadingsPersons Liable, Punishment

The fraudulent conversion of another's property by a person who is in a position of trust, such as an agent or employee.

Embezzlement is distinguished from swindling in that swindling involves wrongfully obtaining property by a false pretense, such as a lie or trick, at the time the property is transferred, which induces the victim to transfer to the wrongdoer title to the property.

Persons Liable

One or more persons may be guilty of embezzlement. If there is a conspiracy to embezzle, parties to the agreement are liable as principals. A person who aids and abets in the conversion can also be guilty of the offense.

Punishment

Since the offense is defined differently in several jurisdictions, the punishment for embezzlement can vary. Generally, the penalty is a fine, imprisonment, or both.

Some states distinguish between grand embezzlement and petit embezzlement on the basis of the value of the property stolen. The former involves property of a greater value and is punishable as a felony, while the latter involves property of a lesser value and is punishable as a misdemeanor.

Additional topics

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