Attorney at Law

Auto Theft


In Hawaii, if you don't get the registered owner's permission to use another's car, before you use it, you can go to jail up to 5 years.  A recent case has said even if you thought another person had permission to use the car, and they gave it to you, you could still be guilty of this offense.  For example:

  • Your cousin comes over to your house.
  • He tells you a friend let him borrow the car he was driving.
  • He then asks you to drive the car today, since he is tired.
  • While driving the car, the police stop you and you are arrested for driving a stolen car.
  • Even though you did not know it was stolen, since you did not ask the registered owner permission, you can be convicted for a felony.

I realize this is an outrageous result, however, this is very similar to the facts in a recent case that was affirmed by Hawaii's appellate court.



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