In the Georgia Code, Theft by Conversion is defined in § 16-8-4. It provides that "[a] person commits the offense of theft by conversion when, having lawfully obtained funds or other property of another including, but not limited to, leased or rented personal property, under an agreement or other known legal obligation to make a specified application of such funds or a specified disposition of such property, he knowingly converts the funds or property to his own use in violation of the agreement or legal obligation. This Code section applies whether the application or disposition is to be made from the funds or property of another or from the accused's own funds or property in equivalent amount when the agreement contemplates that the accused may deal with the funds or property of another as his own."
The code section does not say what type of crime theft by conversion is, and § 16-1-10 provides that "[a]ny conduct that is made criminal by this title or by another statute of this state and for which punishment is not otherwise provided, shall be punished as for a misdemeanor."
Therefore, theft by conversion is a misdemeanor. Theft crimes except shoplifting are punished as a misdemeanor if property value is less than $500 (with exceptions). If the value of the items is more than $500, then 1 to 10 years in prison is the punishment.
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Often the defendant and the prosecutor can negotiate terms to resolve a criminal proceeding. Many defendants discuss settlement terms with the prosecutor, and once terms are reached, those terms are given to the judge. If the defendant asks the judge if some settlement is acceptable, such as paying back $x.xx, and the prosecutor does not agree with those terms, then the prosecutor may object and then who knows what the judge will say. If the defendant and prosecutor are on the same page going in, it is usually much smoother and there is more certainty as to the outcome.
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