What is Considered Grand Theft Auto in California? Get Answers from Virtuoso Criminal and DUI Lawyers

Grand theft auto is a serious crime in California that can lead to imprisonment, fines, restitution, and a criminal record. If you or someone you know has been accused of stealing a vehicle, it's essential to understand the legal definition and consequences of this offense. In this blog post, we'll explain what is considered grand theft auto in California and why you should contact Virtuoso Criminal and DUI Lawyers if you need legal representation.

What is Grand Theft Auto?

According to California Penal Code section 487(d)(1), grand theft auto occurs when a person takes a vehicle that belongs to someone else, with the intent to deprive the owner of the vehicle permanently or for an extended period. The value of the vehicle is not relevant to the charge, as long as the car, truck, motorcycle, or other motorized vehicle is worth more than $950. Therefore, even if the vehicle is old or damaged, its value can be estimated by the replacement or repair costs or its fair market value.

What are the Penalties for Grand Theft Auto?

Grand theft auto is a felony offense in California that carries severe penalties, depending on the circumstances of the crime and the defendant's criminal history. Generally, grand theft auto is punishable by:

  • Imprisonment in state prison for 16 months, 2 or 3 years, or up to 4 years if the vehicle is worth more than $65,000
  • Fine of up to $10,000 or more, depending on the value of the vehicle
  • Restitution to the owner or insurance company for any damages or losses incurred
  • Probation, parole, or community service, as determined by the court

Additionally, if the vehicle was occupied or the defendant used a firearm or other deadly weapon during the offense, the penalties can be enhanced, leading to longer sentences and stricter conditions.

Why Choose Virtuoso Criminal and DUI Lawyers?

If you're facing charges of grand theft auto in California, you need experienced and dedicated legal representation that can protect your rights and interests. At Virtuoso Criminal and DUI Lawyers, our attorneys Daniel Vaswani and Joseph McPeak have a proven track record of success in defending clients against theft crimes, including grand theft auto. We offer personalized attention, strategic planning, and aggressive advocacy to achieve the best possible outcome for your case.

Our law firm has over 20 years of combined experience in criminal defense and DUI defense, and we have a deep understanding of California's criminal justice system. We know how to challenge the evidence, negotiate with prosecutors, and present compelling arguments to judges and juries. We also understand the emotional and financial toll that a criminal charge can have on your life, and we are committed to providing affordable and transparent legal services that prioritize your needs.


How to Contact Virtuoso Criminal and DUI Lawyers


If you or a loved one has been arrested or charged with grand theft auto in California, don't hesitate to seek legal help from Virtuoso Criminal and DUI Lawyers. We offer a free initial consultation to discuss your case, explain your rights, and answer your questions. You can call us at 1(833) 6 NO-JAIL or fill out our online form to schedule an appointment. We are available 24/7 to assist you, and we serve clients in Los Angeles County, Orange County, Ventura County, Riverside County, San Bernardino County, and other areas of Southern California. Don't wait to get the legal representation you deserve. Call us today!


About the Author:

Daniel is a criminal and DUI defense attorney dedicated to assisting his client's achieve their goals, mitigating risks and consequences, and defending their rights.