2010 California Code
Chapter 6. Embezzlement
503. Embezzlement is the fraudulent appropriation of property by a person to whom it has been intrusted. 504. Every officer of this state, or of any county, city, city and county, or other municipal corporation or subdivision thereof, and every deputy, clerk, or servant of that officer, and every officer, director, trustee, clerk, servant, or agent of any association, society, or corporation (public or private), who fraudulently appropriates to any use or purpose not in the due and lawful execution of that person's trust, any property in his or her possession or under his or her control by virtue of that trust, or secretes it with a fraudulent intent to appropriate it to that use or purpose, is guilty of embezzlement. 504a. Every person who shall fraudulently remove, conceal or dispose of any goods, chattels or effects, leased or let to him by any instrument in writing, or any personal property or effects of another in his possession, under a contract of purchase not yet fulfilled, and any person in possession of such goods, chattels, or effects knowing them to be subject to such lease or contract of purchase who shall so remove, conceal or dispose of the same with intent to injure or defraud the lessor or owner thereof, is guilty of embezzlement. 504b. Where under the terms of a security agreement, as defined in paragraph (73) of subdivision (a) of Section 9102 of the Commercial Code, the debtor has the right to sell the property covered thereby and is to account to the secured party for, and pay to the secured party the indebtedness secured by the security agreement from, the proceeds of the sale of any of the property, and where the debtor, having sold the property covered by the security agreement and having received the proceeds of the sale, willfully and wrongfully, and with the intent to defraud, fails to pay to the secured party the amounts due under the security agreement, or the proceeds of the sale, whichever is the lesser amount, and appropriates the money to his or her own use, the debtor shall be guilty of embezzlement and shall be punishable as provided in Section 514. 505. Every carrier or other person having under his control personal property for the purpose of transportation for hire, who fraudulently appropriates it to any use or purpose inconsistent with the safe keeping of such property and its transportation according to his trust, is guilty of embezzlement, whether he has broken the package in which such property is contained, or has otherwise separated the items thereof, or not. 506. Every trustee, banker, merchant, broker, attorney, agent, assignee in trust, executor, administrator, or collector, or person otherwise intrusted with or having in his control property for the use of any other person, who fraudulently appropriates it to any use or purpose not in the due and lawful execution of his trust, or secretes it with a fraudulent intent to appropriate it to such use or purpose, and any contractor who appropriates money paid to him for any use or purpose, other than for that which he received it, is guilty of embezzlement, and the payment of laborers and materialmen for work performed or material furnished in the performance of any contract is hereby declared to be the use and purpose to which the contract price of such contract, or any part thereof, received by the contractor shall be applied. 506a. Any person who, acting as collector, or acting in any capacity in or about a business conducted for the collection of accounts or debts owing by another person, and who violates Section 506 of the Penal Code, shall be deemed to be an agent or person as defined in Section 506, and subject for a violation of Section 506, to be prosecuted, tried, and punished in accordance therewith and with law; and "collector" means every such person who collects, or who has in his or her possession or under his or her control property or money for the use of any other person, whether in his or her own name and mixed with his or her own property or money, or otherwise, or whether he or she has any interest, direct or indirect, in or to such property or money, or any portion thereof, and who fraudulently appropriates to his or her own use, or the use of any person other than the true owner, or person entitled thereto, or secretes that property or money, or any portion thereof, or interest therein not his or her own, with a fraudulent intent to appropriate it to any use or purpose not in the due and lawful execution of his or her trust. 506b. Any person who violates Section 2985.3 or 2985.4 of the Civil Code, relating to real property sales contracts, is guilty of a public offense punishable by a fine not exceeding ten thousand dollars ($10,000), or by imprisonment in the state prison, or in the county jail not exceeding one year, or by both such fine and imprisonment. 507. Every person intrusted with any property as bailee, tenant, or lodger, or with any power of attorney for the sale or transfer thereof, who fraudulently converts the same or the proceeds thereof to his own use, or secretes it or them with a fraudulent intent to convert to his own use, is guilty of embezzlement. 508. Every clerk, agent, or servant of any person who fraudulently appropriates to his own use, or secretes with a fraudulent intent to appropriate to his own use, any property of another which has come into his control or care by virtue of his employment as such clerk, agent, or servant, is guilty of embezzlement. 509. A distinct act of taking is not necessary to constitute embezzlement. 510. Any evidence of debt, negotiable by delivery only, and actually executed, is the subject of embezzlement, whether it has been delivered or issued as a valid instrument or not. 511. Upon any indictment for embezzlement, it is a sufficient defense that the property was appropriated openly and avowedly, and under a claim of title preferred in good faith, even though such claim is untenable. But this provision does not excuse the unlawful retention of the property of another to offset or pay demands held against him. 512. The fact that the accused intended to restore the property embezzled, is no ground of defense or mitigation of punishment, if it has not been restored before an information has been laid before a magistrate, or an indictment found by a grand jury, charging the commission of the offense. 513. Whenever, prior to an information laid before a magistrate, or an indictment found by a grand jury, charging the commission of embezzlement, the person accused voluntarily and actually restores or tenders restoration of the property alleged to have been embezzled, or any part thereof, such fact is not a ground of defense, but it authorizes the court to mitigate punishment, in its discretion. 514. Every person guilty of embezzlement is punishable in the manner prescribed for theft of property of the value or kind embezzled; and where the property embezzled is an evidence of debt or right of action, the sum due upon it or secured to be paid by it must be taken as its value; if the embezzlement or defalcation is of the public funds of the United States, or of this state, or of any county or municipality within this state, the offense is a felony, and is punishable by imprisonment in the state prison; and the person so convicted is ineligible thereafter to any office of honor, trust, or profit in this state. 515. Upon conviction of a felony violation under this chapter, the fact that the victim was an elder or dependent person, as defined in Section 288, shall be considered a circumstance in aggravation when imposing a term under subdivision (b) of Section 1170.
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