If you get in trouble for a theft-related crime, such as shoplifting, you need to be sure that you are doing all you can to fight it. The reason for this is that the courts have a lot of leeway in the manner that they handle this case, which can have very different outcomes for your life. For instance, thefts under $5,000 can either be treated as a summary offence or an indictable offence. A summary offence is typically minor and could include small fines and tickets. However, the courts can still sentence you to up to 6 months in jail, with fines as great as $2,000. Indictable offences can lead to jail time of up to 2 years. Aside from penalties, crimes of dishonesty can make it tough to get a job if this charge stays on your record. To fight such a case, read the following tips.
#1: Hire a Great Lawyer as Quick as You Can
The lawyer that you hire will make a huge difference when it comes to your case. Because of this, you need to give them a head start, so that they can have all of the evidence needed and look out for you. They will work with you both in court and behind the scenes, to be sure that you're treated with fairness and leniency, especially if you are innocent or a first-time offender.
#2: Appeal To The Sensibilities Of The Courts
Sometimes, an apology and act of sincere humanity can go a long way. If you can show the courts that you not only apologized to the person or company that you stole from, but also to the courts for having to hear your case, they will act in your favor. If the matter is small enough to not be considered serious, you should work to have the charge downgraded or thrown out altogether. Get creative and find it within yourself to show sincere remorse in a way that works for you.
#3: Seek A Plea Bargain
One of the best things that a lawyer can do for you is negotiate your plea bargain. A plea bargain is a situation in which you will either have the charge thrown out or drastically reduced, in exchange for fines, community service, participation in a court-sanctioned class, or another such action. Take advantage of this, so that you can prevent this charge from remaining on your record.
Follow these tips and give yourself all that you need in order to prevent the harsh penalties that you can experience with crimes of theft. Talk to a professional like Hardy & Associates Criminal Law Firm for more information.
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