In Florida, grand theft may range from a felony in the third degree all the way up to a serious felony of the first degree. The degree of the offense depends upon the value of the property stolen or sometimes whether the property is of some unique type. For example, stealing a gun, even though the gun may be worth less than $100, constitutes grand theft. Normally, property worth $300 or more but less than $20,000 is a felony of the 3rd degree. Other forms of property that can be stolen which constitutes grand theft, regardless of value, includes: motor vehicles, trade secrets, or property taken from a construction site.
Dealing in stolen property means to sell, buy, possess, or otherwise dispose of property which you know or should know was stolen. The statutes governing trafficking in stolen property are intended to punish those who knowingly deal in property stolen by others. The basic scenario envisions a person who steals and then sells the stolen property to a middleman, called a “fence”—who in turn re-sells the property to a third person. The statutes under Florida Law punish both the initial thief and the fence.
Trafficking in stolen property is a felony of the second degree punishable by up to fifteen years in prison. There are many defenses to accusations of grand theft and dealing in stolen property, most of which depend on the particular facts of each case. There are also technical defenses available to a Defendant under the law. If you are charged with such an offense, you should confer with an attorney as soon as possible so that you may establish what defenses, if any, you have to these serious charges.