City employees in Ohio are often trusted to handle significant amounts of money and ensure that the money is spent as intended. Using money intended for another purpose or for your own personal benefit is considered a form of embezzlement and can result in criminal charges.
According to reports, a woman who formerly worked as a senior billing clerk with the City of Bedford reportedly faces charges for tampering with records and falsification and theft in office, after she reportedly stole thousands of dollars from the city. The woman was fired in 2016 after making a number of false statements, which prompted the internal investigation. According to prosecutors, the investigation revealed that the clerk allegedly falsified payment records in the city's utility billing and cash receipt systems to embezzle over $10,000 from the city's water department.
The woman also allegedly embezzled $50,000 worth of fees intended for residential water supply, as well as fees for permits and other necessary expenses. Prosecutors reported that the woman would mark a cash payment paid in the system, but delete the payment in the drawer.
Many embezzlement crimes occur when an employee with money management responsibilities is given access to another party's money, but secretly converts that property for their own use. However, if you can prove that you did not intend to deprive the owner of their money or property, prosecutors may not be able to convict you of embezzlement. The right criminal defense strategy could help you come up with an effective plan that protects you from money laundering and embezzlement charges. If the strategy is successful, prosecutors may have no choice but to reduce the charges or drop the charges entirely.