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Posted on in Felonies

IL defense lawyerIn the state of Illinois, there is no specific “grand theft auto” law. So when someone steals a car or other motor vehicle, it is included in Illinois’ general theft law. This means, if someone is caught in possession of a stolen vehicle, they will face felony charges and all the punishments that come with them.

Defining Vehicular Theft

As stated above, the act of stealing a motor vehicle falls under the Illinois Theft Statute which includes several incriminating acts:

  • Taking unauthorized control of another person’s property.
  • Using deception to take control of another person’s property.
  • Threatening the owner to take control of their property.
  • Knowingly taking property that has already been stolen from another person.

In the cases of vehicular theft, the automobile is the property that cannot be taken control of. The exception is if the owner gives permission for the alleged thief to borrow the vehicle for an agreed upon period of time.

Punishments for Vehicular Theft

Stealing a car will result in a felony theft charge. A conviction of this nature will result in fines and possibly even jail time depending on the value of the product stolen.

  • A Class 3 felony is given when the value range of the automobile stolen is $500-$10,000 and the punishment is up to five years in prison.
  • A Class 2 felony is given when the value range of the automobile stolen is $10,000-$100,000 and deception is used to take the car. If the car is a government-owned vehicle with a value less than $10,000, the alleged thief will be given this charge. The punishment is up to seven years in prison.
  • A Class 1 felony is given when the value range of a government-owned automobile is $10,000-$100,000. For general cars, this charge is given when the value range of the automobile is $100,000-$500,000. The action is punishable by up to 15 years in prison.
  • A Class 1 non-probationary felony is given when the value range of the automobile stolen is $500,000-$1,000,000.
  • A Class X Felony is given when the value of a regular car stolen exceeds $1,000,000 and when the value of a government-owned car exceeds $100,000. The punishment for this charge is up to 30 years in prison.

Defending Against Vehicular Theft Charges

Mistakes can be made and the best way to defend against vehicular theft charges is to prove that the alleged thief is, in fact, the legal owner of the vehicle. If the alleged thief is not the owner, then they must prove that they had permission from the owner to take the car and return it at a certain time.

There are also times when a car is stolen by one person but then is sold to another person who does not know that the vehicle was stolen. That person would have to prove that they had no knowledge of the theft in order to avoid a felony charge.

Contact an Elgin, IL Vehicle Theft Defense Lawyer

Cases of theft are often more complicated than they may appear. In order to be as safe as possible, you will need an attorney to help build your case and examine all evidence so that you are not wrongfully punished. The lawyers of the Law Offices of Brian J. Mirandola are ready to help you through your case. To schedule a free consultation with a Kane County criminal defense attorney, call 847-488-0889.

 

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=072000050K16-1

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/documents/062500050K4-103.2.htm

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Posted on in Felonies

Kane County defense attorney

Facing felony charges comes with significant stress and uncertainty. In all reality, it is important to act quickly after the initial arrest. With an aggressive and comprehensive legal strategy, it is possible you could secure a lesser charge, or avoid a conviction altogether. In Illinois, a felony charge can carry substantial jail time and devastating fines. Immediately after your arrest, it is critical to seek the guidance of an experienced criminal defense attorney who you can believe in. 

Common Illinois Felonies

Here in the state of Illinois, even a Class 4 felony (the lowest of Illinois' felonies) can bring up to $25,000 in fines and as many as three years in prison. Listed below are some of the most common felonies committed throughout the state:

Aggravated DUI: According to Illinois state law, a drinking and driving arrest can be elevated to an aggravated DUI in a number of situations. If a person is convicted of a third or any subsequent DUIs, they will likely face Class 2 felony charges. Other aggravating factors include driving under the influence without a valid driver’s license, while transporting a child, or causing bodily harm to another party. 

Drug Crimes: When facing a drug charge in the state of Illinois, the severity of the charges depend on the type of substance and the quantity. Displayed within 720 ILCS 570/402, possession of drugs such as heroin or cocaine constitute a felony charge, for any amount. If you are found with less than 1 gram, you will likely face a Class 4 felony charge. As the quantity increases, the legal severity does as well. If you are apprehended with an excess of 15 grams of either heroin or cocaine, you could face as many as 15 years in prison. For more information on the implications of a felony drug charge, speak with a legal professional. 

Other Felony Crimes: A felony charge can dramatically impact the rest of your life. From difficulty securing employment or residential opportunities to substantial fines and possible jail time, an arrest of such magnitude should not be taken lightly. Other common felonies committed throughout the state of Illinois include burglary, motor vehicle theft, and forgery. In the event of an arrest, seek out legal assistance immediately.  

Contact an Elgin, IL Felony Defense Lawyer 

With years of legal experience within the state of Illinois, Attorney Brian J. Mirandola relentlessly represents his clients in order to secure the best possible legal outcome. Through consultation regarding the arrest and the development of a precise strategy, a skilled attorney can help you secure a reduction of charges or complete dismissal. To schedule your free consultation with an experienced Kane County criminal defense attorney, contact us today at 847-488-0889. 

Sources:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/fulltext.asp?DocName=072005700K402

https://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/publications/pdf_publications/dsd_a118.pdf

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Posted on in Felonies

hate crime, Elgin criminal defense attorneyThe phrase "hate crime" is often used by the media and in casual conversation about certain types of criminal acts. Under state and federal law, however, "hate crime" has a specific meaning. Hate crimes are unique in that punishment for the crimes may be enhanced as a direct result of perpetrator’s motives for committing the crime.

How Illinois Defines a "Hate Crime"

A person commits a hate crime in Illinois when he or she commit one of the specifically listed acts because of "an actual or perceived race, color, creed, religion, ancestry, gender, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability, or national origin of a person or group." This means that you can commit a hate crime even if you are mistaken about someone’s characteristics. It also means that not just any crime can be a hate crime. The crime must be one of the crimes listed in the law. For example, rape and murder are not listed as possible hate crimes in the Illinois statute.

The crimes that can be considered hate crimes include:

  • Assault;
  • Battery;
  • Aggravated assault;
  • Theft;
  • Criminal trespass to a residence;
  • Criminal trespass to real property;
  • Mob action;
  • Disorderly conduct; and
  • Harassment.

In January 2018, the Illinois legislature added several more offenses to the list of possible hate crimes. Stalking, cyberstalking, the transmission of obscene messages, and harassment through electronic communications can now be considered hate crimes depending on the perpetrator’s motivation.

Enhanced Penalties for Hate Crimes

The Illinois hate crime law increases the penalties for actions that are already against the law. In almost all cases a hate crime is a felony, even in cases where the "regular" crime is only a misdemeanor. This means that the maximum penalty for a hate crime could be anywhere between one to thirty years in prison, depending on the facts of the case.

Defenses to Hate Crime Allegations

If the prosecutor is going to charge a crime under the hate crime laws, the prosecutor will have an extra burden at trial. The prosecutor will need to show a judge or jury beyond a reasonable doubt that the person committed the crime and that the defendant was motivated by the one of the conditions listed in the statute.

A criminal defense lawyer may try to show that the suspect could not have committed the underlying crime. However, in some instances, the evidence is overwhelming that the defendant did commit the crime. In those cases the best defense may be to explain the motives of the defendant in committing the crime were not those covered by the hate crime law. A successful defense will create doubt in the minds of the jury about the motives of the defendant.

Contact Us for Help

If you have been charged with a crime, you need to speak with a tough and knowledgeable Kane County criminal defense attorney. Call 847-488-0889 to schedule a free consultation at The The Law Office of Brian J. Mirandola today. Do not speak to anyone about your case until you have talked to a lawyer.

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/documents/072000050K12-7.1.htm

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