Grand larceny in Miami, also known in Florida as Grand Theft is defined by taking another's property, worth more than $300, without their permission. Prosecutors must prove that when the property was taken the perpetrator intended to either temporarily or permanently deprive the owner of their rightful use of the property.
Grand Theft is a "real intent" felony, meaning that the perpetrator must not only come into possession of property belonging to another person but did so with the intention of stealing (i.e.: stripping the victim of their rights to the property).
Larceny is distinct from robbery. Robbery often involves taking possession of something via force or threat. Larceny is committed when someone takes an item of any value. When a person takes possession of a valuable object, grand larceny is committed. Though the two have small similarities, charges between larceny and robbery are different.
Most people may have unintentionally committed larceny, and may not have known a crime was being committed. For example, should an employee take a low-budget item for their use from their place of employment, they are committing larceny.
Penalties for Grand Theft (Larceny) hinge upon the value of the property taken. If the value of the stolen property was worth more than $100,000, the charge will be Grand Theft First Degree, subjecting the offender to a maximum penalty of up to 30 years in prison and a fine of $10,000. Under the Florida Sentencing Guidelines, the minimum penalty that can be imposed without prosecutor agreement is 21 months in prison. If the value of the stolen property is less than $100,000 but more than $20,000, the offense is Grand Theft Second Degree. The maximum penalty would be up to 15 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000. If the property stolen was less than $20,000 but more than $300, the charge is Grand Theft Third Degree, punishable by up to five years in prison and a $5,000 fine.
If the property at issue is a will, another legal document, a motor vehicle, a firearm, a controlled substance, or if the property has been taken from a designated construction site, it is possible to be charged with third-degree grand theft.
Larceny can be divided into a pair of classes: the larceny committed from another individual or larceny committed via fraud. Regardless of the class, the prosecution is required to prove that the property was stolen in a deceitful way, designed to permanently deprive the owner of their ownership, or was never allowed to take the property.
There are several defenses available to Grand Theft. They include but are not limited to: Voluntary Abandonment; Equal Ownership; Valueless Property; and Good Faith Possession. Our firm has had tremendous success representing numerous clients accused of this offense. We have also been successful in securing extraordinary outcomes for our cherished clients.
In certain cases, the accused seek to prove entrapment. Florida, however, now has laws that prohibit this protection. The exception is if the law enforcement activities had not caused involvement by a regular, law-abiding citizen.
It is the responsibility of the judge, jury, or public prosecutor to assess the worth of the property being stolen. The prosecutor will in most cases request that the owner testifies in court about what they believe the property is worth. The owner may however include the sentimental value of an item in their assessment, which is typically much higher than the object's true market value.
A larceny defense attorney can challenge the property owner's opinion. The difference between a felony or misdemeanor charge or conviction may be determined based on the proper value of the item.
The general information provided above about grand larceny in Fort Lauderdale is meant for educational purposes only and is not a substitute for speaking directly with an attorney about the facts and circumstances of your case. Please call 954.500.0003 in Broward or 305.674.0003 in Miami to schedule a consultation with the Law Offices of Mark Eiglarsh.