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Theft Crimes Have You Been Charged With a Theft Crime?

Miami Theft Crime Defense Lawyer

Experienced Defense Against Theft Crime Charges in Florida

Theft is a common crime in Florida. Even though it is fairly common doesn't mean that the justice system treats it lightly. It is just the opposite. Law enforcement officers, prosecutors and the courts take theft seriously and the penalties for being convicted can be severe. Going through life with a criminal record can be an impediment to reaching goals and realizing one's full potential. What should you do if you are under investigation for a theft crime or you have been arrested and charged? A Miami criminal defense attorney can explain the charges against you, your rights, the consequences of being convicted or pleading guilty and the various options which are open to you.

  • Burglary - Sometimes referred to as "breaking and entering," burglary involves entering a home for the purpose of committing a crime. A majority of the time, the criminal intent is theft (depriving the home or property owner of their possessions). Burglary no longer requires that a person "breaks into" the home. Burglary can be charged even without forced entry.
  • Robbery - Robbery is theft by force or using intimidation in order to take the property of another. Robbery can also become aggravated robbery if a deadly weapon was used.
  • Armed Robbery - This criminal offense involves using a firearm or some other type of weapon for the purpose of threatening or intimidating someone for the purpose of taking their property/possession.
  • Shoplifting - Most commonly charged as a misdemeanor, shoplifting involves taking something from a retail establishment. Usually this involves taking something from a store, concealing it in clothing, a purse, etc. and walking out of the store without paying for it.

Petty vs Grand Theft in Florida

In Florida, petit (petty) theft is the illegal taking of the property of another valued at no more than $300. Grand theft involves stolen property valued at more than $300. A conviction can include jail or prison time, fines, probation, court-ordered treatment, restitution, and a criminal record.

Grand theft is classified as:

  • First Degree Grand Theft: Stolen property valued at $100k or more
  • Second Degree Grand Theft: Stolen property valued at $20k to $100k
  • Third Degree Grand Theft: Stolen property valued at $300 to $20k OR a firearm or motor vehicle

There are a variety of other factors that could elevate a third degree felony to a second or first degree felony. For example, stealing about $300k worth of product might normally be classified as a third degree grand theft, but if the stolen property was medical equipment valued at $300k or more, then the offense will be charged as a second degree grand theft.

License Plate Theft Laws in Florida

Stealing a license plate in Florida is a misdemeanor in Florida. Doing this will lead to penalties that may include and jail and, more often, the creation of a permanent criminal record. In Florida, knowingly attaching an unassigned license plate, tag, or validation sticker to a vehicle is a second degree misdemeanor, with penalties of up to 60 days in jail or 6 months of probation, and a $500 fine.

Theft Crimes in Florida

According to the Florida Statutes §812.014 (2012), theft crimes are divided into petit theft and grand theft. Theft offenses include crimes such as robbery, armed robbery, embezzlement, shoplifting, carjacking, identity theft, possession of or trafficking in stolen property and others. When facing criminal accusations in a theft crime, you are up against professionals who handle criminal prosecution on a daily basis. Your best chance to avoid having a criminal record rests on being aggressively defended by a skilled theft defense lawyer.

Since theft is considered a crime of dishonesty, a conviction can prevent you from having a career which requires a bond or a professional license. Many employers now run background checks on prospective employees in order to an applicant has a clean record.

A resourceful Miami theft defense lawyer will carefully consider the unique circumstances of your case while helping you to formulate an aggressive defense strategy. Contact us today.


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