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California Grand Theft Lawyer – Penal Code 487 PC

A Grand Theft Lawyer From My Rights Law Will Help You Win Your Case

When you think about “grand theft,” you might imagine masked criminals speeding away from a bank with bags filled with diamonds and cash. While this case certainly would be considered grand theft, California law is broader in its definition of this crime. If you steal hundreds of thousands of dollars from an employer, you could face charges for this crime. You could also be charged with grand theft if you swipe avocados, olives, domestic fowl, or other specific agricultural items surpassing $250.

Charges for this crime are taken seriously by prosecutors, and if you’re found guilty of the offense, you face imprisonment and hefty fines.

If you or someone you know has been charged with grand theft or another related crime, call a grand theft attorney from My Rights Law immediately. To learn more about how we can fight the accusations and penalties you face, call us at (888) 702-8882 or leave us a message on our secure web form to speak with a California theft attorney today.

What Is Grand Theft PC 487

California Penal Code 487 PC defines grand theft as stealing someone else’s property, cash, or work valued at $950 or more[1]. Under more specific cases, such as when the theft was produce, farm animals, or ocean life, a grand theft charge can be assessed over a mere $250 worth of property.

Examples of grand theft under PC 487 include:

  • Borrowing a family member’s vehicle and keeping it for an extended time
  • Stealing $1,000 worth of goods from a store
  • Taking more than $250 of shrimp from a market
  • Stealing someone else’s puppy that is valued at more than $950

Penalties For Grand Theft PC 487

California grand theft could be a misdemeanor. The penalty is up to one year in county jail and a fine of $1,000. If you are convicted of a felony grand theft, the sentence is up to 3 years of state prison and a maximum $10,000 fine.

Other allegations may enhance this sentence. This usually has to do with the amount of the loss. For example, if the loss is more than $65,000, the Court will add an additional year in prison. There are further enhancements based on additional losses.

However, California considers grand theft a “wobbler” crime, meaning it can be charged either as a misdemeanor or a felony. Elements that help determine how your charge will be classified include the value of the property or goods you allegedly stole, whether you were cruel in committing the crime, and whether or not the offense was intended and calculated.

If convicted of grand theft, you face the following statutory penalties:

  • Misdemeanor: Up to one year in county jail and fines reaching $1,000
  • Felony: Up to three years in prison and fines reaching $10,000 [2]

It is essential to mention that if the theft you allegedly committed were the theft of a firearm, you would automatically be charged with a felony. Further, there are several sentence enhancements you face depending on several circumstances. They are:

  • An additional one year of incarceration if the property stolen exceeds a value of $65,000
  • Two extra years of imprisonment if the property’s value was worth more than $200,000
  • Three additional years of imprisonment if the property’s value exceeds $1,300,000
  • Four extra years of imprisonment if the property was worth a value of more than $3,200,000

What Are The Defenses To A Grand Theft PC 487 Charge?

Some potential defenses to grant theft in California include:

  • Claim of right – if you truly believed you were the rightful owner of the property, you cannot have intended to steal the property, so you did not commit theft.
  • Consent – if you were given consent to take the property (and you did not exceed the scope of that consent), you did not commit theft.
  • Lack of intent – if you did not intend to steal, you did not commit theft.
  • Misidentification – you are misidentified or falsely accused of theft.

How My Rights Law Can Help If You’re Arrested For Grand Theft PC 487 In California

As a felony charge, grand theft (the most serious of theft offenses) in California can result in serious punishment, including criminal fines of greater than $1,000 and a prison sentence of more than one year in a federal facility, making it important that you hire a theft lawyer to do everything you can to avoid these charges.

Felony charges are extremely serious. You should hire an experienced criminal defense attorney to represent your interests. Without the help of criminal defense attorneys, the charges could lead to a conviction and a criminal record.

A sound defense to a felony theft charge may be available to the defendant, depending on the facts of the case. Also, it may be possible to reduce a felony charge to a misdemeanor theft charge depending on the facts and the type of stolen property.

If you’ve been charged with grand theft, you are facing potentially drastic consequences, so you need a California theft lawyer on your side. A free consultation with our theft lawyer can help you avoid jail or prison time and hefty fines.

My Rights Law California Grand Theft Lawyers

Countering the prosecution’s accusations against you compellingly is important to beating a grand theft charge. My Rights Law knows how prosecutors approach these cases. Using this wisdom and drawing from past successes, we are uniquely able to examine the facts and defend clients from dishonest tactics the prosecution might use.

My Rights Law is a firm that aggressively explores all of the facts to isolate which defense strategy has the best chance of succeeding. We fight for not-guilty verdicts or non-jail sentences. When relevant, we hire expert analysts whose testimony can enhance your chances of maintaining your freedom.

For a free confidential consultation regarding your case, contact us today by calling (888) 702-8882 or leaving a message on our secure web form.

FOOTNOTES
[1] Penal Code 489 PC – Grand theft; punishment.
[2] Penal Code 489 PC.

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