What are Examples of Embezzlement Under California Law? PC 503

January 21, 2023

Embezzlement is a form of white-collar crime that involves the unauthorized use or misappropriation of funds or assets that have been entrusted to an individual or organization. Under Penal Code 503 in California, embezzlement is defined as the fraudulent conversion of property by a person in lawful possession of it. The classification of embezzlement as a felony or misdemeanor depends on the value of the property embezzled. If the value exceeds $950, the prosecutor holds discretion about whether to file felony or misdemeanor embezzlement charges.

There are many different examples of embezzlement that can occur in various settings, and each case is unique. However, some common examples of embezzlement include:

Employee Embezzlement

This occurs when an employee misappropriates funds or assets from their employer. This can include stealing cash, using company credit cards for personal expenses, or falsifying expense reports.

Company Embezzlement

This occurs when a company or organization misappropriates funds or assets from its shareholders or investors. This can include falsifying financial statements, diverting company funds for personal use, or creating fake invoices.

Charity Embezzlement

This occurs when an individual or organization misappropriates funds or assets from a charity or non-profit organization. This can include stealing donations, diverting funds intended for specific causes, or creating fake expenses.

Investment Embezzlement

This occurs when an investment advisor or broker misappropriates funds or assets from their clients. This can include stealing or misusing clients’ money, making unauthorized trades, or providing false information about investments.

Public Embezzlement

This occurs when a public official misappropriates public funds or assets for personal gain. This can include stealing tax dollars, diverting funds intended for public projects, or using public resources for personal use.

In each of these examples, the embezzlement is committed by someone who is in a position of trust and responsibility. They have access to funds or assets and are expected to use them appropriately. However, they choose to misuse them for personal gain.

It’s important to note that embezzlement can be difficult to detect, as a defendant may go to great lengths to cover their tracks. They may create fake records, forge documents, or use other methods to conceal their activities.

Contact Us for Help in Southern California


If you are being accused of committing embezzlement under PC 503, then call the Law Offices of John D. Rogers today. Attorney John D. Rogers has experience defending his clients charged with embezzlement in both state and federal court. He is a board-certified criminal law specialist by the State Bar of California. Contact his office today to schedule a free confidential consultation.

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