Sentencing Hearings in New York Federal Embezzlement Cases

Sentencing hearings in New York federal embezzlement cases can be complicated to navigate alone. A person needs to have an attorney who is familiar with these complex statutes and the specific sentencing guidelines at play. It may be a person’s last shot to get a low sentence in an embezzlement case.  If you have been charged with federal embezzlement, speak with a skilled federal defense lawyer that can advocate for you.

Sentencing Schemes in Federal Embezzlement Cases

For all sentencing hearings in New York federal embezzlement cases, there are two separate schemes at play that the court is obligated to consider. One is any statutory mandatory minimum or maximum that the Judge cannot go below or above, except under very limited circumstances.

The other sentencing scheme is the United State Sentencing Guidelines. The guidelines used to be mandatory, but no longer are. The way it works basically is that every federal statute has a corresponding Sentencing Guideline which sets out a calculation based on different aggravating and mitigating factors. This gives a point number which is matched it up with the Sentencing Guideline Scale, giving a range depending on the defendant’s criminal history category.

The Judge then has the statutory mandatory minimum and maximum and must consider the United States Sentencing Guidelines (although they are not bound by them anymore) and they establish a sentence to using both of those.

Impact of  the 2005 Supreme Court Hearings on Sentencing Guidelines

This question is referring to the 2005 United States Supreme Court decision in Booker, which rendered the United States Sentencing Guidelines no longer mandatory. Before then, courts were obligated, except under a very limited set of circumstances, to sentence the defendant within their guidelines range. That is no longer the case and judges have much more discretion.

Because the United States Sentencing Guidelines are no longer mandatory, it gives experienced federal defense attorneys the opportunity to argue for an even lower sentence for their client, which they were not allowed to do previously.

Appealing an Unfair Sentence

Sentencing hearings in New York federal embezzlement cases are not absolute in their impact. If someone is unhappy with their sentence, there are many different appeals that can be filed. A person can appeal a substantively unreasonable sentence, or the entire conviction -- or they can file a habeas petition under 28 U.S.C. § 2255. There are many different ways in which to counter a very harsh sentence.

Necessity of a  Federal Embezzlement Sentencing Lawyer

The statutory maximum is as high as 10 years with regard to many federal embezzlement statutes and as high as 20 and even 30 under certain circumstances for mail and wire fraud. It is important to have not only an experienced federal lawyer but someone who is knowledgeable in the area of defending these embezzlement cases because the defendant may be facing an effective life sentence.

The most important thing when dealing with sentencing hearings in New York federal embezzlement cases is strong advocacy. It is not always a search for the truth in order to get a better sentence but to provide as much mitigation as possible in explaining the situation. If you face federal embezzlement charges, seek the services of a lawyer that can advocate for you.