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Marsha411JD, Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 19673
Experience:  Licensed attorney with 29 yrs. exp. in criminal law
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I left California 23 years ago shortly after my first dui can

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I left California 23 years ago shortly after my first dui can I still be procecuted

Thank you for the information and your question. Under the law of California the statute of limitations for a DUI, assuming it was not aggravated and being charged as a felony, would be three years. The statute of limitations though is "tolled" (stopped from running) if a person absents themselves from the State, but only for three years. So, that has the effect of making the SOL six years for someone who left the State. However, it is important to understand what actions by the State meet the SOL, in other words, make it not an issue. I have set out the statute below that applies. That means if, in your case, the state took one of those actions before you left the State, then they met the SOL and they could still prosecute you if they chose to if you return to the State. Whether they would or not, that is hard to say. It would be difficult since the evidence is so stale, but they would have a legal right to. However, if they did not take any of those steps before you left the state, then they would have run out of time under the SOL to prosecute you.

Please let me know if you need any clarification. I would be glad to assist you further if I can.

804. Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, for the purpose of this chapter, prosecution for an offense is commenced when any of the following occurs: (a) An indictment or information is filed. (b) A complaint is filed charging a misdemeanor or infraction. (c) The defendant is arraigned on a complaint that charges the defendant with a felony. (d) An arrest warrant or bench warrant is issued, provided the warrant names or describes the defendant with the same degree of particularity required for an indictment, information, or complaint.
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