Theft Crimes Lawyer in Fort Lauderdale, FL
Serving Clients in Fort Lauderdale and Miami for 20+ Years
From stealing cash or merchandise to defrauding someone or embezzling money, there are various theft crimes in Florida. A conviction can result in harsh penalties, such as incarceration and fines worth thousands of dollars, whether you are facing misdemeanor or felony charges. Additionally, having a theft conviction on your criminal record can make it extremely difficult to find work, gain housing, apply for college or university, and live a normal life.
If you have been arrested for a theft or property offense in Fort Lauderdale, look no further than The Hoffman Firm to fight for you inside and outside the courtroom. As a former prosecutor with more than two decades of trial-tested experience, Attorney Evan Hoffman has a unique understanding of both sides of the Florida criminal justice system to help you obtain the best possible outcome in your case.
Our firm handles the following types of theft and property crimes:
- Auto Theft
- Criminal Mischief
- Criminal Trespass
- Elderly Exploitation
- Grand Theft
- Petit Theft
- Resisting Recovery of Stolen Property
- Scheme to Defraud
- Shoplifting Retail Theft
Florida Theft Laws & Penalties
In Florida, theft means knowingly gaining access, using, or attempting to obtain or use someone else’s property with the intent to deprive the individual of their property or misappropriate the property either temporarily or permanently. Common examples include stealing a person’s wallet or an item from a store, as well as having control over another person’s bank account but misusing the money to purchase something for yourself.
There are two main types of theft: petit theft and grand theft. The penalties for theft offenses are based on the value of the stolen property, the type of property, and the facts and circumstances around the case. If you or a loved one were accused any of these crimes, schedule a free consultation with our seasoned Fort Lauderdale theft lawyer at The Hoffman Firm as soon as possible.
The following is a breakdown of the penalties for petit theft and grand theft in Florida:
Second-degree petit theft – Considered the least serious theft offense, a person commits second-degree petit theft if the property stolen is worth less than $100. This offense is a second-degree misdemeanor, punishable by a maximum jail term of 60 days and a fine of up to $500.
First-degree petit theft – A person commits this theft offense if the property stolen is worth between $100 and less than $750. First-degree petit theft is a first-degree misdemeanor, which carries a jail sentence of up to one year and a maximum fine of $1,000.
Third-degree grand theft – A person commits this theft offense if the property stolen is worth between $750 and less than $20,000, the property stolen from someone’s home is worth between $100 and $750, or the property stolen is a will, firearm, vehicle, farm animal, or controlled substance. Third-degree grand theft is a third-degree felony, punishable by imprisonment for up to five years and a maximum fine of $5,000.
Second-degree grand theft – A person commits this theft offense if the property stolen is worth between $20,000 and less than $100,000, the property stolen during a state of emergency or riot is worth between $5,000 and $20,000, or the stolen property is interstate or intrastate cargo valued at less than $50,000, or the property stolen is law enforcement or emergency medical equipment worth at least $300. Second-degree grand theft is a second-degree felony, which carries a maximum prison term of 15 years and a fine of up to $15,000.
First-degree grand theft – A person commits this theft offense if the property stolen is worth at least $100,000, the property is interstate or intrastate cargo valued at more than $50,000, the theft offense involved using a motor vehicle, or the theft offense caused over $1,000 worth of property damage. First-degree grand theft is a first-degree felony, punishable by imprisonment for up to 30 years and a maximum fine of $10,000.
Keep in mind, there are enhanced penalties for repeat offenders and theft crimes committed against the elderly. Furthermore, theft offenses may also result in a civil lawsuit. If you were arrested for theft, do not hesitate to speak with a knowledgeable Fort Lauderdale theft attorney at our firm 954-737-3004.
Common Defenses to Theft Crimes in Florida
Theft means intentionally taking or gaining control of another person’s property without their permission. Common examples of theft crimes in Florida include shoplifting, auto theft, burglary, and robbery. If you were accused of theft, our experienced Fort Lauderdale theft attorney can protect your rights and your freedom.
Below are 5 commonly used defenses when it comes to accusations of theft:
- You did not steal on purpose – Theft is a specific-intent offense, which means you must intentionally or knowingly take another person’s property to be convicted. If the prosecution cannot prove specific intent, then your attorney may successfully argue that you didn’t mean to deprive someone else of their property.
- You were intoxicated – In relation to the legal defense above, if you mistakenly take another person’s property – believing it was yours – because you were too drunk or intoxicated to notice and able to show proof, you cannot be convicted of theft.
- You were borrowing the property – Theft occurs when a person permanently deprives another individual of their property. However, if you were simply borrowing the property – with every intention to return it to its owner – you may avoid conviction.
- You are the owner of the property – When two or more parties purchase an item, it is not uncommon for two people to dispute ownership. If you had good faith to believe that the alleged stolen property belonged to you and could provide evidence supporting your claim, you could use this defense to avoid conviction.
- Entrapment – If you were induced to commit a theft crime by another person with the intent to prosecute you of the crime, it is considered entrapment. The intent to steal must come from the entrapping individual.
Contact a Fort Lauderdale Theft Crimes Attorney 954-737-3004
No matter what type of theft or property charges you face, let our experienced criminal defense attorney at The Hoffman Firm protect your rights, freedom, and future. Our legal team can investigate your case, collect and analyze evidence, negotiate with the prosecution, and defend you at trial. Our theft crimes lawyer is ready to fight for you immediately. Call today.
Client-Focused RepresentationOur Firm is dedicated to client satisfaction. We are available 24/7 to help those in need.
Decades of ExperienceAttorney Evan Hoffman has over two decades of experience fighting for the accused.
Premier Criminal Defense FirmExperienced Attorney Evan Hoffman has handled some of the most high profile and complex cases.
Proven Track RecordClient satisfaction is our top priority. At The Hoffman Firm we take great pride in our success and case victories.
Florida Former State ProsecutorAttorney Evan Hoffman has extensive knowledge of the strategies used by prosecutors throughout Florida.
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