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When a person is charged with arson, this allegation is typically quite alarming. Depending on the seriousness of the situation, arson is either charged as a felony or a misdemeanor. A felony arson conviction can lead to serious financial and personal consequences. After all, any type of felony conviction can cause interruption in any person’s professional life. Upon conviction, licensed professionals can lose the right to work in their field in California. Young students may face particularly grim prospects if they are convicted of arson. Colleges may ask students to leave if they are convicted of serious felonies.
Los Angeles arson charges are investigated and prosecuted to the full extent of the law. The state can’t take arson charges lightly because arson-related fires have cost many lives in this state over the years. Additionally, arson has caused millions of dollars in property damage. Arson investigations are so vigorous that it is possible for the authorities to mistakenly target innocent people. In their vigilant quest for justice, dogged investigators and prosecutors can miss signs of innocence that might seem obvious to others. This is why it is so important for people to secure experienced legal representatives when faced with charges of this nature. In California, arson against property is a felony that is punishable by anywhere from 16 months to three years in prison. If convicted of arson of forested land or arson of a structure, a convicted defendant may face up to six years in a California prison. The most serious type of arson is arson that leads to severe bodily injury to another human being. In these cases, convicted people can receive prison sentences of up to nine years.
Aggravated arson is a serious offence that can lead to very serious fines and jail sentences. This type of arson occurs when the offender planned the burning in advance with full deliberation and malicious intent. Whether a burning is intentional or not, it is considered aggravated if a person is injured by the fire. If the defendant has already received an arson conviction in the past 10 years, the new case again becomes an aggravated arson case. Finally, California law considers an arson fire to be aggravated arson if the fire damages five or more homes.
A lot of subjective factors go into determining whether an accident amounts to arson or reckless burning. Although prosecutors can charge reckless burning as a felony, this crime is also charged as a misdemeanor with a maximal sentence of six months in jail. Because there are so many complicated legal issues involved in any arson case, it is sensible to only hire experienced legal professionals to fight any such charge. The earlier one secures a criminal defense attorney, the better one’s chances of receiving an acquittal or a “not guilty” verdict. Our law firm will go to great lengths to ensure that each and every client receives the best outcomes from court appearances. Because we truly care about each and every client, we always work long and hard on Los Angeles arson cases.