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Theft of weapons generally applies to firearms. Stealing a firearm is a serious offense, and in the state of California, it will automatically result in a grand theft charge. This charge, commonly called Grand Theft Firearm or GTF in the California Penal Code, is a felony offense. The value of the firearm does not matter. Unlawfully taking a dangerous weapon such as a firearm can lead to up to three years in prison and will count as a strike on the defendant's record.
Theft of weapons can likely lead to a prison term of 16 months to three years, fines of up to $10,000, and a permanent strike on one's record. The charge of theft of weapons (or grand theft firearm) often is accompanied by other charges as well. For example, if the defendant broke into someone's property or used force to take the firearm from a person's possession, he or she might also be charged with burglary or robbery. If the defendant unlawfully keeps a firearm that was entrusted to them, he or she might be charged with embezzlement. Similar to other theft charges, however, intent to steal must be proven in a theft of weapons charge.
An experienced criminal attorney familiar with theft of weapons cases can defend you in a variety of ways. If you believed the firearm rightfully belonged to you or believe you are being falsely accused, you can fight the charge and may have it dropped or reduced. A criminal lawyer can also attempt to prove you had no intent to steal the firearm and/or you had the owner's permission, which would prevent you from being charged with theft of weapons or GTF.
It is not always easy for a prosecutor to prove the defendant intentionally planned to deprive someone of their property, nor is it always easy to prove the defendant did not have permission. Thus, the defense of a skilled attorney can help your case greatly and will know how to win in theft of weapons litigation.
If you have been accused of theft of weapons or Grand Theft Firearm, contact Attorney Search Network immediately for a criminal defense lawyer referral.
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