Common California theft crime and white collar offenses cases handled by our Orange County law offices include:
Any crime that involves the taking of something from another can be classified as “theft.” It is not uncommon for someone charged with the more specific crimes of embezzlement, forgery, identity theft, receiving stolen property, embezzlement, credit card theft, burglary, shoplifting, or fraud to also be charged with the generic crimes “petty theft” and “grand theft”.
A “petty theft” is the unlawful taking of an item with a value more than $400. If you have been accused of a petty theft or simple shoplifting case, Ms. Sena may be able to get your case dismissed. Call Orange County criminal defense lawyer Staycie R. Sena at (949) 477-8088 now for a free consultation.
A “grand theft” is the unlawful taking of an item with a value more than $400. Some cases are wrongly charged as grand thefts, when they should be charged as petty thefts. The consequences for a grand theft conviction are often greater than a petty theft conviction.
While petty thefts are misdemeanors, grand thefts can be charged as felonies. If the crime involves a weapon, it will always be charged as a felony.
White collar crimes are usually thefts that take place in a business or corporate setting. Embezzlement, or theft from an employer, is the most common white collar charge in state court, whereas wire fraud or mail fraud is often charged in federal court.
Embezzlement, fraud or other white collar cases carry heavy penalties. If you are suspected of any of these offenses, you need an experienced criminal defense attorney to protect your rights and your reputation.
If you are being investigated for any theft crime, contact or call Orange County criminal defense attorney Staycie R. Sena at (949) 477-8088 to discuss your legal options.
Q: Should I talk with security personnel or the police?
A: No! If you are suspected of having committed a crime, you should not talk with security personnel or the police. The US and California Constitutions guarantee you the right to remain silent and you should exercise that right. Do not be fooled by a promise that the police will not be called if you cooperate. Confessing a crime to a firm’s security personnel is the same as confessing it to the police. Before you speak with anyone concerning a theft allegation, call the Law Offices of Staycie R. Sena and talk with an experienced criminal defense lawyer today.
Q: Should I repay the money I took?
A: There are times when repaying stolen money can greatly reduce a sentence or avoid charges all together. Before repaying any money, you should contact the Law Offices of Staycie R. Sena to discuss your particular case.
Q: Will I go to jail?
A: The penalties for theft cases vary widely, depending on the dollar amount alleged, the District Attorney prosecuting the case, the courthouse that you are charged in and the desires of the victim. Some defendants accused of theft do have to complete jail time, but Ms. Sena has worked out numerous dispositions where jail time has been avoided. To consult with Ms. Sena directly, contact or call (949) 477-8088.
California Penal Code section 484-488(a) Petty Theft:
Every person who shall feloniously steal, take, carry, lead, or drive away the personal property of another, or who shall fraudulently appropriate property which has been entrusted to him or her, or who shall knowingly and designedly, by any false or fraudulent representation or pretense, defraud any other person of money, labor or real or personal property, or who causes or procures others to report falsely of his or her wealth or mercantile character and by thus imposing upon any person, obtains credit and thereby fraudulently gets or obtains possession of money, or property or obtains the labor or service of another, is guilty of theft. In determining the value of the property obtained, for the purposes of this section, the reasonable and fair market value shall be the test, and in determining the value of services received the contract price shall be the test. If there be no contract price, the reasonable and going wage for the service rendered shall govern. For the purposes of this section, any false or fraudulent representation or pretense made shall be treated as continuing, so as to cover any money, property or service received as a result thereof, and the complaint, information or indictment may charge that the crime was committed on any date during the particular period in question. The hiring of any additional employee or employees without advising each of them of every labor claim due and unpaid and every judgment that the employer has been unable to meet shall be prima facie evidence of intent to defraud.
California Penal Code section 487 (Grand Theft):
Grand theft is theft committed in any of the following cases:
(a) When the money, labor, or real or personal property taken is of a value exceeding four hundred dollars ($400) except as provided in subdivision (b).
(b) Notwithstanding subdivision (a), grand theft is committed in any of the following cases:
(1) (A) When domestic fowls, avocados, olives, citrus or deciduous fruits, other fruits, vegetables, nuts, artichokes, or other farm crops are taken of a value exceeding two hundred fifty dollars ($250).
(B) For the purposes of establishing that the value of avocados or citrus fruit under this paragraph exceeds two hundred fifty dollars ($250), that value may be shown by the presentation of credible evidence which establishes that on the day of the theft avocados or citrus fruit of the same variety and weight exceeded two hundred fifty dollars ($250) in wholesale value.
(2) When fish, shellfish, mollusks, crustaceans, kelp, algae, or other aquacultural products are taken from a commercial or research operation which is producing that product, of a value exceeding two hundred fifty dollars ($250).
(3) Where the money, labor, or real or personal property is taken by a servant, agent, or employee from his or her principal or employer and aggregates nine hundred fifty dollars ($950) or more in any 12 consecutive month period.
(c) When the property is taken from the person of another.
(d) When the property taken is any of the following: (1) An automobile, horse, mare, gelding, any bovine animal, any caprine animal, mule, jack, jenny, sheep, lamb, hog, sow, boar, gilt, barrow, or pig.
(2) A firearm.
(e) This section shall become operative on January 1, 1997.
California Penal Code section 459-460 Burglary:
Every person who enters any house, room, apartment, tenement, shop, warehouse, store, mill, barn, stable, outhouse or other building, tent, vessel, as defined in Section 21 of the Harbors and Navigation Code, floating home, as defined in subdivision (d) of Section 18075.55 of the Health and Safety Code, railroad car, locked or sealed cargo container, whether or not mounted on a vehicle, trailer coach, as defined in Section 635 of the Vehicle Code, any house car, as defined in Section 362 of the Vehicle Code, inhabited camper, as defined in Section 243 of the Vehicle Code, vehicle as defined by the Vehicle Code, when the doors are locked, aircraft as defined by Section 21012 of the Public Utilities Code, or mine or any underground portion thereof, with intent to commit grand or petit larceny or any felony is guilty of burglary. As used in this chapter, "inhabited" means currently being used for dwelling purposes, whether occupied or not. A house, trailer, vessel designed for habitation, or portion of a building is currently being used for dwelling purposes if, at the time of the burglary, it was not occupied solely because a natural or other disaster caused the occupants to leave the premises.
California Penal Code section 503 Embezzlement:
Embezzlement is the fraudulent appropriation of property by a person to whom it has been entrusted.
California Penal Code section 470 Forgery:
(a)Every person who, with the intent to defraud, knowing that he or she has no authority to do so, signs the name of another person or of a fictitious person to any of the items listed in subdivision (d) is guilty of forgery.
(b) Every person who, with the intent to defraud, counterfeits or forges the seal or handwriting of another is guilty of forgery.
(c) Every person who, with the intent to defraud, alters, corrupts, or falsifies any record of any will, codicil, conveyance, or other instrument, the record of which is by law evidence, or any record of any judgment of a court or the return of any officer to any process of any court, is guilty of forgery.
(d) Every person who, with the intent to defraud, falsely makes, alters, forges, or counterfeits, utters, publishes, passes or attempts or offers to pass, as true and genuine, any of the following items, knowing the same to be false, altered, forged, or counterfeited, is guilty of forgery: any check, bond, bank bill, or note, cashier's check, traveler's check, money order, post note, draft, any controller's warrant for the payment of money at the treasury, county order or warrant, or request for the payment of money, receipt for money or goods, bill of exchange, promissory note, order, or any assignment of any bond, writing obligatory, or other contract for money or other property, contract, due bill for payment of money or property, receipt for money or property, passage ticket, lottery ticket or share purporting to be issued under the California State Lottery Act of 1984, trading stamp, power of attorney, certificate of ownership or other document evidencing ownership of a vehicle or undocumented vessel, or any certificate of any share, right, or interest in the stock of any corporation or association, or the delivery of goods or chattels of any kind, or for the delivery of any instrument of writing, or acquittance, release or discharge of any debt, account, suit, action, demand, or any other thing, real or personal, or any transfer or assurance of money, certificate of shares of stock, goods, chattels, or other property whatever, or any letter of attorney, or other power to receive money, or to receive or transfer certificates of shares of stock or annuities, or to let, lease, dispose of, alien, or convey any goods, chattels, lands, or tenements, or other estate, real or personal, or falsifies the acknowledgment of any notary public, or any notary public who issues an acknowledgment knowing it to be false; or any matter described in subdivision (b).
(e) Upon a trial for forging any bill or note purporting to be the bill or note of an incorporated company or bank, or for passing, or attempting to pass, or having in possession with intent to pass, any forged bill or note, it is not necessary to prove the incorporation of the bank or company by the charter or act of incorporation, but it may be proved by general reputation; and persons of skill are competent witnesses to prove that the bill or note is forged or counterfeited.
California Penal Code section 530.5 Identity theft:
(a) Every person who willfully obtains personal identifying information, as defined in subdivision (b) of Section 530.55, of another person, and uses that information for any unlawful purpose, including to obtain, or attempt to obtain, credit, goods, services, real property, or medical information without the consent of that person, is guilty of a public offense, and upon conviction therefore, shall be punished by a fine, by imprisonment in a county jail not to exceed one year, or by both a fine and imprisonment, or by imprisonment in the state prison.