What is the difference between theft under $5,000 and theft over $5,000?
Theft is defined generally as taking another’s property without lawful authority to do so. Depending on the monetary value of the item(s) stolen, an accused may be charged with theft under $5,000 or theft over $5,000. The main difference between the two is the severity of punishment if convicted.
Theft under $5,00 can be prosecuted by indictment or summary conviction. If the Crown elects to proceeds by way of indictment, the maximum punishment is 2 years imprisonment. If the Crown proceeds by summary conviction, the maximum penalty is 6 months imprisonment.
If you are charged with theft under $5,000 and you are a first-time offender, there is a high likelihood that your criminal charges can be diverted into the Alternative Measure Program. This is a program that diverts offenders from the traditional court system and upon completing certain conditions such as counselling or community service, the theft charge is withdrawn leaving the accused with no criminal record.
Often, the difference between entering the Alternative Measures Program or not, is having the right criminal defence lawyer. Cory Wilson works tirelessly to ensure that each client who is eligible for the program, is accepted into the program.