Code Section Group

Penal Code - PEN

PART 1. OF CRIMES AND PUNISHMENTS [25 - 680]

  ( Part 1 enacted 1872. )

TITLE 13. OF CRIMES AGAINST PROPERTY [450 - 593g]

  ( Title 13 enacted 1872. )

CHAPTER 8. False Personation and Cheats [528 - 539]
  ( Chapter 8 enacted 1872. )

528.
  

Every person who falsely personates another, and in such assumed character marries or pretends to marry, or to sustain the marriage relation towards another, with or without the connivance of such other, is guilty of a felony.

(Enacted 1872.)

528.5.
  

(a) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, any person who knowingly and without consent credibly impersonates another actual person through or on an Internet Web site or by other electronic means for purposes of harming, intimidating, threatening, or defrauding another person is guilty of a public offense punishable pursuant to subdivision (d).

(b) For purposes of this section, an impersonation is credible if another person would reasonably believe, or did reasonably believe, that the defendant was or is the person who was impersonated.

(c) For purposes of this section, “electronic means” shall include opening an e-mail account or an account or profile on a social networking Internet Web site in another person’s name.

(d) A violation of subdivision (a) is punishable by a fine not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year, or by both that fine and imprisonment.

(e) In addition to any other civil remedy available, a person who suffers damage or loss by reason of a violation of subdivision (a) may bring a civil action against the violator for compensatory damages and injunctive relief or other equitable relief pursuant to paragraphs (1), (2), (4), and (5) of subdivision (e) and subdivision (g) of Section 502.

(f) This section shall not preclude prosecution under any other law.

(Added by Stats. 2010, Ch. 335, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 2011.)

529.
  

(a) Every person who falsely personates another in either his or her private or official capacity, and in that assumed character does any of the following, is punishable pursuant to subdivision (b):

(1) Becomes bail or surety for any party in any proceeding whatever, before any court or officer authorized to take that bail or surety.

(2) Verifies, publishes, acknowledges, or proves, in the name of another person, any written instrument, with intent that the same may be recorded, delivered, or used as true.

(3) Does any other act whereby, if done by the person falsely personated, he might, in any event, become liable to any suit or prosecution, or to pay any sum of money, or to incur any charge, forfeiture, or penalty, or whereby any benefit might accrue to the party personating, or to any other person.

(b) By a fine not exceeding ten thousand dollars ($10,000), or by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year, or imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170, or by both that fine and imprisonment.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 15, Sec. 381. Effective April 4, 2011. Operative October 1, 2011, by Sec. 636 of Ch. 15, as amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 39, Sec. 68.)

529a.
  

Every person who manufactures, produces, sells, offers, or transfers to another any document purporting to be either a certificate of birth or certificate of baptism, knowing such document to be false or counterfeit and with the intent to deceive, is guilty of a crime, and upon conviction therefor, shall be punished by imprisonment in a county jail not to exceed one year, or by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170. Every person who offers, displays, or has in his or her possession any false or counterfeit certificate of birth or certificate of baptism, or any genuine certificate of birth which describes a person then living or deceased, with intent to represent himself or herself as another or to conceal his or her true identity, is guilty of a crime, and upon conviction therefor, shall be punished by imprisonment in the county jail not to exceed one year.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 15, Sec. 382. Effective April 4, 2011. Operative October 1, 2011, by Sec. 636 of Ch. 15, as amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 39, Sec. 68.)

529.5.
  

(a) Every person who manufactures, sells, offers for sale, or transfers any document, not amounting to counterfeit, purporting to be a government-issued identification card or driver’s license, which by virtue of the wording or appearance thereon could reasonably deceive an ordinary person into believing that it is issued by a government agency, and who knows that the document is not a government-issued document, is guilty of a misdemeanor, punishable by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year, or by a fine not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by both the fine and imprisonment.

(b) Any person who, having been convicted of a violation of subdivision (a), is subsequently convicted of a violation of subdivision (a), is punishable for the subsequent conviction by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year, or by a fine not exceeding five thousand dollars ($5,000), or by both the fine and imprisonment.

(c) Any person who possesses a document described in subdivision (a) and who knows that the document is not a government-issued document is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of not less than one thousand dollars ($1,000) and not more than two thousand five hundred dollars ($2,500). The misdemeanor fine shall be imposed except in unusual cases where the interests of justice would be served. The court may allow an offender to work off the fine by doing community service. If community service work is not available, the misdemeanor shall be punishable by a fine of up to one thousand dollars ($1,000), based on the person’s ability to pay.

(d) If an offense specified in this section is committed by a person when he or she is under 21 years of age, but is 13 years of age or older, the court also may suspend the person’s driving privilege for one year, pursuant to Section 13202.5 of the Vehicle Code.

(Amended by Stats. 1990, Ch. 960, Sec. 1.)

529.7.
  

Any person who obtains, or assists another person in obtaining, a driver’s license, identification card, vehicle registration certificate, or any other official document issued by the Department of Motor Vehicles, with knowledge that the person obtaining the document is not entitled to the document, is guilty of a misdemeanor, and is punishable by imprisonment in a county jail for up to one year, or a fine of up to one thousand dollars ($1,000), or both.

(Added by Stats. 2002, Ch. 907, Sec. 2. Effective January 1, 2003.)

530.
  

Every person who falsely personates another, in either his private or official capacity, and in such assumed character receives any money or property, knowing that it is intended to be delivered to the individual so personated, with intent to convert the same to his own use, or to that of another person, or to deprive the true owner thereof, is punishable in the same manner and to the same extent as for larceny of the money or property so received.

(Amended by Stats. 1905, Ch. 523.)

530.5.
  

(a) Every person who willfully obtains personal identifying information, as defined in subdivision (b) of Section 530.55, of another person, and uses that information for any unlawful purpose, including to obtain, or attempt to obtain, credit, goods, services, real property, or medical information without the consent of that person, is guilty of a public offense, and upon conviction therefor, shall be punished by a fine, by imprisonment in a county jail not to exceed one year, or by both a fine and imprisonment, or by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170.

(b) In any case in which a person willfully obtains personal identifying information of another person, uses that information to commit a crime in addition to a violation of subdivision (a), and is convicted of that crime, the court records shall reflect that the person whose identity was falsely used to commit the crime did not commit the crime.

(c) (1) Every person who, with the intent to defraud, acquires or retains possession of the personal identifying information, as defined in subdivision (b) of Section 530.55, of another person is guilty of a public offense, and upon conviction therefor, shall be punished by a fine, by imprisonment in a county jail not to exceed one year, or by both a fine and imprisonment.

(2) Every person who, with the intent to defraud, acquires or retains possession of the personal identifying information, as defined in subdivision (b) of Section 530.55, of another person, and who has previously been convicted of a violation of this section, upon conviction therefor shall be punished by a fine, by imprisonment in a county jail not to exceed one year, or by both a fine and imprisonment, or by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170.

(3) Every person who, with the intent to defraud, acquires or retains possession of the personal identifying information, as defined in subdivision (b) of Section 530.55, of 10 or more other persons is guilty of a public offense, and upon conviction therefor, shall be punished by a fine, by imprisonment in a county jail not to exceed one year, or by both a fine and imprisonment, or by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170.

(d) (1) Every person who, with the intent to defraud, sells, transfers, or conveys the personal identifying information, as defined in subdivision (b) of Section 530.55, of another person is guilty of a public offense, and upon conviction therefor, shall be punished by a fine, by imprisonment in a county jail not to exceed one year, or by both a fine and imprisonment, or by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170.

(2) Every person who, with actual knowledge that the personal identifying information, as defined in subdivision (b) of Section 530.55, of a specific person will be used to commit a violation of subdivision (a), sells, transfers, or conveys that same personal identifying information is guilty of a public offense, and upon conviction therefor, shall be punished by a fine, by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170, or by both a fine and imprisonment.

(e) Every person who commits mail theft, as defined in Section 1708 of Title 18 of the United States Code, is guilty of a public offense, and upon conviction therefor shall be punished by a fine, by imprisonment in a county jail not to exceed one year, or by both a fine and imprisonment. Prosecution under this subdivision shall not limit or preclude prosecution under any other provision of law, including, but not limited to, subdivisions (a) to (c), inclusive, of this section.

(f) An interactive computer service or access software provider, as defined in subsection (f) of Section 230 of Title 47 of the United States Code, shall not be liable under this section unless the service or provider acquires, transfers, sells, conveys, or retains possession of personal information with the intent to defraud.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 15, Sec. 383. Effective April 4, 2011. Operative October 1, 2011, by Sec. 636 of Ch. 15, as amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 39, Sec. 68.)

530.55.
  

(a) For purposes of this chapter, “person” means a natural person, living or deceased, firm, association, organization, partnership, business trust, company, corporation, limited liability company, or public entity, or any other legal entity.

(b) For purposes of this chapter, “personal identifying information” means any name, address, telephone number, health insurance number, taxpayer identification number, school identification number, state or federal driver’s license, or identification number, social security number, place of employment, employee identification number, professional or occupational number, mother’s maiden name, demand deposit account number, savings account number, checking account number, PIN (personal identification number) or password, alien registration number, government passport number, date of birth, unique biometric data including fingerprint, facial scan identifiers, voiceprint, retina or iris image, or other unique physical representation, unique electronic data including information identification number assigned to the person, address or routing code, telecommunication identifying information or access device, information contained in a birth or death certificate, or credit card number of an individual person, or an equivalent form of identification.

(Added by Stats. 2006, Ch. 522, Sec. 3. Effective January 1, 2007.)

530.6.
  

(a) A person who has learned or reasonably suspects that his or her personal identifying information has been unlawfully used by another, as described in subdivision (a) of Section 530.5, may initiate a law enforcement investigation by contacting the local law enforcement agency that has jurisdiction over his or her actual residence or place of business, which shall take a police report of the matter, provide the complainant with a copy of that report, and begin an investigation of the facts. If the suspected crime was committed in a different jurisdiction, the local law enforcement agency may refer the matter to the law enforcement agency where the suspected crime was committed for further investigation of the facts.

(b) A person who reasonably believes that he or she is the victim of identity theft may petition a court, or the court, on its own motion or upon application of the prosecuting attorney, may move, for an expedited judicial determination of his or her factual innocence, where the perpetrator of the identity theft was arrested for, cited for, or convicted of a crime under the victim’s identity, or where a criminal complaint has been filed against the perpetrator in the victim’s name, or where the victim’s identity has been mistakenly associated with a record of criminal conviction. Any judicial determination of factual innocence made pursuant to this section may be heard and determined upon declarations, affidavits, police reports, or other material, relevant, and reliable information submitted by the parties or ordered to be part of the record by the court. Where the court determines that the petition or motion is meritorious and that there is no reasonable cause to believe that the victim committed the offense for which the perpetrator of the identity theft was arrested, cited, convicted, or subject to a criminal complaint in the victim’s name, or that the victim’s identity has been mistakenly associated with a record of criminal conviction, the court shall find the victim factually innocent of that offense. If the victim is found factually innocent, the court shall issue an order certifying this determination.

(c) After a court has issued a determination of factual innocence pursuant to this section, the court may order the name and associated personal identifying information contained in court records, files, and indexes accessible by the public deleted, sealed, or labeled to show that the data is impersonated and does not reflect the defendant’s identity.

(d) A court that has issued a determination of factual innocence pursuant to this section may at any time vacate that determination if the petition, or any information submitted in support of the petition, is found to contain any material misrepresentation or fraud.

(e) The Judicial Council of California shall develop a form for use in issuing an order pursuant to this section.

(f) For purposes of this section,“person” means a natural person, firm, association, organization, partnership, business trust, company, corporation, limited liability company, or public entity.

(Amended by Stats. 2006, Ch. 10, Sec. 2. Effective February 25, 2006.)

530.7.
  

(a) In order for a victim of identity theft to be included in the data base established pursuant to subdivision (c), he or she shall submit to the Department of Justice a court order obtained pursuant to any provision of law, a full set of fingerprints, and any other information prescribed by the department.

(b) Upon receiving information pursuant to subdivision (a), the Department of Justice shall verify the identity of the victim against any driver’s license or other identification record maintained by the Department of Motor Vehicles.

(c) The Department of Justice shall establish and maintain a data base of individuals who have been victims of identity theft. The department shall provide a victim of identity theft or his or her authorized representative access to the data base in order to establish that the individual has been a victim of identity theft. Access to the data base shall be limited to criminal justice agencies, victims of identity theft, and individuals and agencies authorized by the victims.

(d) The Department of Justice shall establish and maintain a toll-free telephone number to provide access to information under subdivision (c).

(e) This section shall be operative September 1, 2001.

(Amended by Stats. 2001, Ch. 854, Sec. 30. Effective January 1, 2002.)

530.8.
  

(a) If a person discovers that an application in his or her name for a loan, credit line or account, credit card, charge card, public utility service, mail receiving or forwarding service, office or desk space rental service, or commercial mobile radio service has been filed with any person or entity by an unauthorized person, or that an account in his or her name has been opened with a bank, trust company, savings association, credit union, public utility, mail receiving or forwarding service, office or desk space rental service, or commercial mobile radio service provider by an unauthorized person, then, upon presenting to the person or entity with which the application was filed or the account was opened a copy of a police report prepared pursuant to Section 530.6 and identifying information in the categories of information that the unauthorized person used to complete the application or to open the account, the person, or a law enforcement officer specified by the person, shall be entitled to receive information related to the application or account, including a copy of the unauthorized person’s application or application information and a record of transactions or charges associated with the application or account. Upon request by the person in whose name the application was filed or in whose name the account was opened, the person or entity with which the application was filed shall inform him or her of the categories of identifying information that the unauthorized person used to complete the application or to open the account. The person or entity with which the application was filed or the account was opened shall provide copies of all paper records, records of telephone applications or authorizations, or records of electronic applications or authorizations required by this section, without charge, within 10 business days of receipt of the person’s request and submission of the required copy of the police report and identifying information.

(b) Any request made pursuant to subdivision (a) to a person or entity subject to the provisions of Section 2891 of the Public Utilities Code shall be in writing and the requesting person shall be deemed to be the subscriber for purposes of that section.

(c) (1) Before a person or entity provides copies to a law enforcement officer pursuant to subdivision (a), the person or entity may require the requesting person to submit a signed and dated statement by which the requesting person does all of the following:

(A) Authorizes disclosure for a stated period.

(B) Specifies the name of the agency or department to which the disclosure is authorized.

(C) Identifies the types of records that the requesting person authorizes to be disclosed.

(2) The person or entity shall include in the statement to be signed by the requesting person a notice that the requesting person has the right at any time to revoke the authorization.

(d) (1) A failure to produce records pursuant to subdivision (a) shall be addressed by the court in the jurisdiction in which the victim resides or in which the request for information was issued. At the victim’s request, the Attorney General, the district attorney, or the prosecuting city attorney may file a petition to compel the attendance of the person or entity in possession of the records, as described in subdivision (a), and order the production of the requested records to the court. The petition shall contain a declaration from the victim stating when the request for information was made, that the information requested was not provided, and what response, if any, was made by the person or entity. The petition shall also contain copies of the police report prepared pursuant to Section 530.6 and the request for information made pursuant to this section upon the person or entity in possession of the records, as described in subdivision (a), and these two documents shall be kept confidential by the court. The petition and copies of the police report and the application shall be served upon the person or entity in possession of the records, as described in subdivision (a). The court shall hold a hearing on the petition no later than 10 court days after the petition is served and filed. The court shall order the release of records to the victim as required pursuant to this section.

(2) In addition to any other civil remedy available, the victim may bring a civil action against the entity for damages, injunctive relief or other equitable relief, and a penalty of one hundred dollars ($100) per day of noncompliance, plus reasonable attorneys’ fees.

(e) For the purposes of this section, the following terms have the following meanings:

(1) “Application” means a new application for credit or service, the addition of authorized users to an existing account, the renewal of an existing account, or any other changes made to an existing account.

(2) “Commercial mobile radio service” means “commercial mobile radio service” as defined in Section 20.3 of Title 47 of the Code of Federal Regulations.

(3) “Law enforcement officer” means a peace officer as defined by Section 830.1.

(4) “Person” means a natural person, firm, association, organization, partnership, business trust, company, corporation, limited liability company, or public entity.

(Amended by Stats. 2006, Ch. 10, Sec. 3. Effective February 25, 2006.)

531.
  

Every person who is a party to any fraudulent conveyance of any lands, tenements, or hereditaments, goods or chattels, or any right or interest issuing out of the same, or to any bond, suit, judgment, or execution, contract or conveyance, had, made, or contrived with intent to deceive and defraud others, or to defeat, hinder, or delay creditors or others of their just debts, damages, or demands; or who, being a party as aforesaid, at any time wittingly and willingly puts in, uses, avows, maintains, justifies, or defends the same, or any of them, as true, and done, had, or made in good faith, or upon good consideration, or aliens, assigns, or sells any of the lands, tenements, hereditaments, goods, chattels, or other things before mentioned, to him or them conveyed as aforesaid, or any part thereof, is guilty of a misdemeanor.

(Enacted 1872.)

531a.
  

Every person who, with intent to defraud, knowingly executes or procures another to execute any instrument purporting to convey any real property, or any right or interest therein, knowing that such person so executing has no right to or interest in such property, or who files or procures the filing of any such instrument, knowing that the person executing the same had no right, title or interest in the property so purported to be conveyed, is guilty of a misdemeanor and is punishable by imprisonment for not more than one year or by fine of five thousand dollars or both.

(Added by Stats. 1929, Ch. 337.)

532.
  

(a) Every person who knowingly and designedly, by any false or fraudulent representation or pretense, defrauds any other person of money, labor, or property, whether real or personal, or who causes or procures others to report falsely of his or her wealth or mercantile character, and by thus imposing upon any person obtains credit, and thereby fraudulently gets possession of money or property, or obtains the labor or service of another, is punishable in the same manner and to the same extent as for larceny of the money or property so obtained.

(b) Upon a trial for having, with an intent to cheat or defraud another designedly, by any false pretense, obtained the signature of any person to a written instrument, or having obtained from any person any labor, money, or property, whether real or personal, or valuable thing, the defendant cannot be convicted if the false pretense was expressed in language unaccompanied by a false token or writing, unless the pretense, or some note or memorandum thereof is in writing, subscribed by or in the handwriting of the defendant, or unless the pretense is proven by the testimony of two witnesses, or that of one witness and corroborating circumstances. This section does not apply to a prosecution for falsely representing or personating another, and, in that assumed character, marrying, or receiving any money or property.

(Amended by Stats. 1989, Ch. 897, Sec. 22.)

532a.
  

(1) Any person who shall knowingly make or cause to be made, either directly or indirectly or through any agency whatsoever, any false statement in writing, with intent that it shall be relied upon, respecting the financial condition, or means or ability to pay, of himself or herself, or any other person, firm or corporation, in whom he or she is interested, or for whom he or she is acting, for the purpose of procuring in any form whatsoever, either the delivery of personal property, the payment of cash, the making of a loan or credit, the extension of a credit, the execution of a contract of guaranty or suretyship, the discount of an account receivable, or the making, acceptance, discount, sale or endorsement of a bill of exchange, or promissory note, for the benefit of either himself or herself or of that person, firm or corporation shall be guilty of a public offense.

(2) Any person who knowing that a false statement in writing has been made, respecting the financial condition or means or ability to pay, of himself or herself, or a person, firm or corporation in which he or she is interested, or for whom he or she is acting, procures, upon the faith thereof, for the benefit either of himself or herself, or of that person, firm or corporation, either or any of the things of benefit mentioned in the first subdivision of this section shall be guilty of a public offense.

(3) Any person who knowing that a statement in writing has been made, respecting the financial condition or means or ability to pay of himself or herself or a person, firm or corporation, in which he or she is interested, or for whom he or she is acting, represents on a later day in writing that the statement theretofore made, if then again made on said day, would be then true, when in fact, said statement if then made would be false, and procures upon the faith thereof, for the benefit either of himself or herself or of that person, firm or corporation either or any of the things of benefit mentioned in the first subdivision of this section shall be guilty of a public offense.

(4) Any person committing a public offense under subdivision (1), (2), or (3) shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, punishable by a fine of not more than one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by imprisonment in the county jail for not more than six months, or by both that fine and imprisonment. Any person who violates the provisions of subdivision (1), (2), or (3), by using a fictitious name, social security number, business name, or business address, or by falsely representing himself or herself to be another person or another business, is guilty of a felony and is punishable by a fine not exceeding five thousand dollars ($5,000) or by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170, or by both that fine and imprisonment, or by a fine not exceeding two thousand five hundred dollars ($2,500) or by imprisonment in the county jail not exceeding one year, or by both such fine and imprisonment.

(5) This section shall not be construed to preclude the applicability of any other provision of the criminal law of this state which applies or may apply to any transaction.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 15, Sec. 384. Effective April 4, 2011. Operative October 1, 2011, by Sec. 636 of Ch. 15, as amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 39, Sec. 68.)

532b.
  

(a) Any person who falsely represents himself or herself as a veteran or ex-serviceman of any war in which the United States was engaged, in connection with the soliciting of aid or the sale or attempted sale of any property, is guilty of a misdemeanor.

(b) Any person who falsely claims, or presents himself or herself, to be a veteran or member of the Armed Forces of the United States, with the intent to defraud, is guilty of a misdemeanor.

(c) (1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), any person who, orally, in writing, or by wearing any military decoration, falsely represents himself or herself to have been awarded any military decoration, with the intent to defraud, is guilty of a misdemeanor.

(2) This offense is an infraction or a misdemeanor, subject to Sections 19.6, 19.7, and 19.8, if the person committing the offense is a veteran of the Armed Forces of the United States.

(3) For purposes of this subdivision, “military decoration” means any decoration or medal from the Armed Forces of the United States, the California National Guard, the State Military Reserve, or the Naval Militia, or any service medals or badges awarded to the members of those forces, or the ribbon, button, or rosette of that badge, decoration, or medal, or any colorable imitation of that item.

(d) This section does not apply to face-to-face solicitations involving less than ten dollars ($10).

(e) This section, Section 3003 of the Government Code, and Section 1821 of the Military and Veterans Code shall be known and may be cited as the California Stolen Valor Act.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 69, Sec. 2. Effective January 1, 2012.)

532c.
  

Any person, firm, corporation or copartnership who knowingly and designedly offers or gives with winning numbers at any drawing of numbers or with tickets of admission to places of public assemblage, any lot or parcel of real property and charges or collects fees in connection with the transfer thereof, is guilty of a misdemeanor.

(Added by renumbering Section 532a (as added by Stats. 1913, Ch. 70) by Stats. 1935, Ch. 338.)

532d.
  

(a) Any person who solicits or attempts to solicit or receives money or property of any kind for a charitable, religious or eleemosynary purpose and who, directly or indirectly, makes, utters, or delivers, either orally or in writing, an unqualified statement of fact concerning the purpose or organization for which the money or property is solicited or received, or concerning the cost and expense of solicitation or the manner in which the money or property or any part thereof is to be used, which statement is in fact false and was made, uttered, or delivered by that person either willfully and with knowledge of its falsity or negligently without due consideration of those facts which by the use of ordinary care he or she should have known, is guilty of a misdemeanor, and is punishable by imprisonment in the county jail for not more than one year, by a fine not exceeding five thousand dollars ($5,000), or by both that imprisonment and fine.

(b) An offense charged in violation of this section shall be proven by the testimony of one witness and corroborating circumstances.

(c) Nothing contained in this section shall be construed to limit the right of any city, county, or city and county to adopt regulations for charitable solicitations which are not in conflict with this section.

(Amended by Stats. 1998, Ch. 166, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 1999.)

532e.
  

Any person who receives money for the purpose of obtaining or paying for services, labor, materials or equipment incident to constructing improvements on real property and willfully rebates any part of the money to or on behalf of anyone contracting with such person, for provision of the services, labor, materials or equipment for which the money was given, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor; provided, however, that normal trade discount for prompt payment shall not be considered a violation of this section.

(Added by Stats. 1965, Ch. 1145.)

532f.
  

(a) A person commits mortgage fraud if, with the intent to defraud, the person does any of the following:

(1) Deliberately makes any misstatement, misrepresentation, or omission during the mortgage lending process with the intention that it be relied on by a mortgage lender, borrower, or any other party to the mortgage lending process.

(2) Deliberately uses or facilitates the use of any misstatement, misrepresentation, or omission, knowing the same to contain a misstatement, misrepresentation, or omission, during the mortgage lending process with the intention that it be relied on by a mortgage lender, borrower, or any other party to the mortgage lending process.

(3) Receives any proceeds or any other funds in connection with a mortgage loan closing that the person knew resulted from a violation of paragraph (1) or (2) of this subdivision.

(4) Files or causes to be filed with the recorder of any county in connection with a mortgage loan transaction any document the person knows to contain a deliberate misstatement, misrepresentation, or omission.

(b) An offense involving mortgage fraud shall not be based solely on information lawfully disclosed pursuant to federal disclosure laws, regulations, or interpretations related to the mortgage lending process.

(c) (1) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, an order for the production of any or all relevant records possessed by a real estate recordholder in whatever form and however stored may be issued by a judge upon a written ex parte application made under penalty of perjury by a peace officer stating that there are reasonable grounds to believe that the records sought are relevant and material to an ongoing investigation of a felony fraud violation.

(2) The ex parte application shall specify with particularity the records to be produced, which shall relate to a party or parties in the criminal investigation.

(3) Relevant records may include, but are not limited to, purchase contracts, loan applications, settlement statements, closing statements, escrow instructions, payoff demands, disbursement reports, or checks.

(4) The ex parte application and any subsequent judicial order may be ordered sealed by the court upon a sufficient showing that it is necessary for the effective continuation of the investigation.

(5) The records ordered to be produced shall be provided to the peace officer applicant or his or her designee within a reasonable time period after service of the order upon the real estate recordholder.

(d) (1) Nothing in this section shall preclude the real estate recordholder from notifying a customer of the receipt of the order for production of records, unless a court orders the real estate recordholder to withhold notification to the customer upon a finding that this notice would impede the investigation.

(2) If a court has made an order to withhold notification to the customer under this subdivision, the peace officer who or law enforcement agency that obtained the records shall notify the customer by delivering a copy of the ex parte order to the customer within 10 days of the termination of the investigation.

(e) (1) Nothing in this section shall preclude the real estate recordholder from voluntarily disclosing information or providing records to law enforcement upon request.

(2) This section shall not preclude a real estate recordholder, in its discretion, from initiating contact with, and thereafter communicating with and disclosing records to, appropriate state or local agencies concerning a suspected violation of any law.

(f) No real estate recordholder, or any officer, employee, or agent of the real estate recordholder, shall be liable to any person for either of the following:

(1) Disclosing information in response to an order pursuant to this section.

(2) Complying with an order under this section not to disclose to the customer the order, or the dissemination of information pursuant to the order.

(g) Any records required to be produced pursuant to this section shall be accompanied by an affidavit of a custodian of records of the real estate recordholder or other qualified witness which states, or includes in substance, all of the following:

(1) The affiant is the duly authorized custodian of the records or other qualified witness and has authority to certify the records.

(2) The identity of the records.

(3) A description of the mode of preparation of the records.

(4) The records were prepared by the personnel of the business in the regular course of business at or near the time of an act, condition, or event.

(5) Any copies of records described in the order are true copies.

(h) A person who violates this section is guilty of a public offense punishable by imprisonment in a county jail for not more than one year or by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170.

(i) For the purposes of this section, the following terms shall have the following meanings:

(1) “Person” means any individual, partnership, firm, association, corporation, limited liability company, or other legal entity.

(2) “Mortgage lending process” means the process through which a person seeks or obtains a mortgage loan, including, but not limited to, solicitation, application, origination, negotiation of terms, third-party provider services, underwriting, signing and closing, and funding of the loan.

(3) “Mortgage loan” means a loan or agreement to extend credit to a person that is secured by a deed of trust or other document representing a security interest or lien upon any interest in real property, including the renewal or refinancing of the loan.

(4) “Real estate recordholder” means any person, licensed or unlicensed, that meets any of the following conditions:

(A) Is a title insurer that engages in the “business of title insurance” as defined by Section 12340.3 of the Insurance Code, an underwritten title company, or an escrow company.

(B) Functions as a broker or salesperson by engaging in any of the type of acts set forth in Sections 10131, 10131.1, 10131.2, 10131.3, 10131.4, and 10131.6 of the Business and Professions Code.

(C) Engages in the making or servicing of loans secured by real property.

(j) Fraud involving a mortgage loan may only be prosecuted under this section when the value of the alleged fraud meets the threshold for grand theft as set out in subdivision (a) of Section 487.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 15, Sec. 385. Effective April 4, 2011. Operative October 1, 2011, by Sec. 636 of Ch. 15, as amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 39, Sec. 68.)

533.
  

Every person who, after once selling, bartering, or disposing of any tract of land or town lot, or after executing any bond or agreement for the sale of any land or town lot, again willfully and with intent to defraud previous or subsequent purchasers, sells, barters, or disposes of the same tract of land or town lot, or any part thereof, or willfully and with intent to defraud previous or subsequent purchasers, executes any bond or agreement to sell, barter, or dispose of the same land or lot, or any part thereof, to any other person for a valuable consideration, is punishable by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 15, Sec. 386. Effective April 4, 2011. Operative October 1, 2011, by Sec. 636 of Ch. 15, as amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 39, Sec. 68.)

534.
  

Every person who is married or in a registered domestic partnership, who falsely and fraudulently represents himself or herself as competent to sell or mortgage any real estate, to the validity of which sale or mortgage the assent or concurrence of his or her spouse is necessary, and under such representations willfully conveys or mortgages the same, is guilty of a felony.

(Amended by Stats. 2016, Ch. 50, Sec. 73. Effective January 1, 2017.)

535.
  

Every person who obtains any money or property from another, or obtains the signature of another to any written instrument, the false making of which would be forgery, by means of any false or fraudulent sale of property or pretended property, by auction, or by any of the practices known as mock auctions, is punishable by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year, or by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170, or by a fine not exceeding two thousand dollars ($2,000), or by both that fine and imprisonment, and, in addition, is disqualified for a period of three years from acting as an auctioneer in this state.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 15, Sec. 387. Effective April 4, 2011. Operative October 1, 2011, by Sec. 636 of Ch. 15, as amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 39, Sec. 68.)

536.
  

Every commission merchant, broker, agent, factor, or consignee, who shall willfully and corruptly make, or cause to be made, to the principal or consignor of such commission merchant, agent, broker, factor, or consignee, a false statement as to the price obtained for any property consigned or entrusted for sale, or as to the quality or quantity of any property so consigned or entrusted, or as to any expenditures made in connection therewith, shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor, and on conviction thereof, shall be punished by fine not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000) and not less than two hundred dollars ($200), or by imprisonment in the county jail not exceeding six months and not less than 10 days, or by both such fine and imprisonment.

(Amended by Stats. 1983, Ch. 1092, Sec. 299. Effective September 27, 1983. Operative January 1, 1984, by Sec. 427 of Ch. 1092.)

536a.
  

It is hereby made the duty of every commission merchant, broker, factor, or consignee, to whom any property is consigned or entrusted for sale, to make, when accounting therefor or subsequently, upon the written demand of his principal or consignor, a true written statement setting forth the name and address of the person or persons to whom a sale of the said property, or any portion thereof, was made, the quantity so sold to each purchaser, and the respective prices obtained therefor; provided, however, that unless separate written demand shall be made as to each consignment or shipment regarding which said statement is desired, prior to sale, it shall be sufficient to set forth in said statement only so many of said matters above enumerated as said commission merchant, broker, factor, or consignee may be able to obtain from the books of account kept by him; and that said statement shall not be required in case of cash sales where the amount of the transaction is less than fifty dollars. Any person violating the provisions of this section is guilty of a misdemeanor.

(Added by Stats. 1909, Ch. 706.)

537.
  

(a) Any person who obtains any food, fuel, services, or accommodations at a hotel, inn, restaurant, boardinghouse, lodginghouse, apartment house, bungalow court, motel, marina, marine facility, autocamp, ski area, or public or private campground, without paying therefor, with intent to defraud the proprietor or manager thereof, or who obtains credit at an hotel, inn, restaurant, boardinghouse, lodginghouse, apartment house, bungalow court, motel, marina, marine facility, autocamp, or public or private campground by the use of any false pretense, or who, after obtaining credit, food, fuel, services, or accommodations, at an hotel, inn, restaurant, boardinghouse, lodginghouse, apartment house, bungalow court, motel, marina, marine facility, autocamp, or public or private campground, absconds, or surreptitiously, or by force, menace, or threats, removes any part of his or her baggage therefrom with the intent not to pay for his or her food or accommodations is guilty of a public offense punishable as follows:

(1) If the value of the credit, food, fuel, services, or accommodations is nine hundred fifty dollars ($950) or less, by a fine not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000) or by imprisonment in the county jail for a term not exceeding six months, or both.

(2) If the value of the credit, food, fuel, services, or accommodations is greater than nine hundred fifty dollars ($950), by imprisonment in a county jail for a term of not more than one year, or in the state prison.

(b) Any person who uses or attempts to use ski area facilities for which payment is required without paying as required, or who resells a ski lift ticket to another when the resale is not authorized by the proprietor, is guilty of an infraction.

(c) Evidence that a person left the premises of such an hotel, inn, restaurant, boardinghouse, lodginghouse, apartment house, bungalow court, motel, marina, marine facility, autocamp, ski area, or public or private campground, without paying or offering to pay for such food, fuel, services, use of facilities, or accommodation, or that the person, without authorization from the proprietor, resold his or her ski lift ticket to another person after making use of such facilities, shall be prima facie evidence of the following:

(1) That the person obtained such food, fuel, services, use of facilities or accommodations with intent to defraud the proprietor or manager.

(2) That, if, after obtaining the credit, food, fuel, services, or accommodations, the person absconded, or surreptitiously, or by force, menace, or threats, removed part of his or her baggage therefrom, the person did so with the intent not to pay for the credit, food, fuel, services, or accommodations.

(Amended by Stats. 2009, 3rd Ex. Sess., Ch. 28, Sec. 27. Effective January 25, 2010.)

537b.
  

Any person who obtains any livery hire or other accommodation at any livery or feed stable, kept for profit, in this state, without paying therefor, with intent to defraud the proprietor or manager thereof; or who obtains credit at any such livery or feed stable by the use of any false pretense; or who after obtaining a horse, vehicle, or other property at such livery or feed stable, willfully or maliciously abuses the same by beating, goading, overdriving or other willful or malicious conduct, or who after obtaining such horse, vehicle, or other property, shall, with intent to defraud the owner, manager or proprietor of such livery or feed stable, keep the same for a longer period, or take the same to a greater distance than contracted for; or allow a feed bill or other charges to accumulate against such property, without paying therefor; or abandon or leave the same, is guilty of a misdemeanor.

(Added by renumbering Section 537¾ by Stats. 1905, Ch. 523.)

537c.
  

Every owner, manager, proprietor, or other person, having the management, charge or control of any livery stable, feed or boarding stable, and every person pasturing stock, who shall receive and take into his possession, charge, care or control, any horse, mare, or other animal, or any buggy, or other vehicle, belonging to any other person, to be by him kept, fed, or cared for, and who, while said horse, mare or other animal or buggy or other vehicle, is thus in his possession, charge, care or under his control, as aforesaid, shall drive, ride or use, or knowingly permit or allow any person other than the owner or other person entitled so to do, to drive, ride, or otherwise use the same, without the consent or permission of the owner thereof, or other person charged with the care, control or possession of such property, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor.

(Added by Stats. 1909, Ch. 178.)

537e.
  

(a) Any person who knowingly buys, sells, receives, disposes of, conceals, or has in his or her possession any personal property from which the manufacturer’s serial number, identification number, electronic serial number, or any other distinguishing number or identification mark has been removed, defaced, covered, altered, or destroyed, is guilty of a public offense, punishable as follows:

(1) If the value of the property does not exceed nine hundred fifty dollars ($950), by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding six months.

(2) If the value of the property exceeds nine hundred fifty dollars ($950), by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year.

(3) If the property is an integrated computer chip or panel of a value of nine hundred fifty dollars ($950) or more, by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170 for 16 months, or two or three years or by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year.

(b) For purposes of this subdivision, “personal property” includes, but is not limited to, the following:

(1) Any television, radio, recorder, phonograph, telephone, piano, or any other musical instrument or sound equipment.

(2) Any washing machine, sewing machine, vacuum cleaner, or other household appliance or furnishings.

(3) Any typewriter, adding machine, dictaphone, or any other office equipment or furnishings.

(4) Any computer, printed circuit, integrated chip or panel, or other part of a computer.

(5) Any tool or similar device, including any technical or scientific equipment.

(6) Any bicycle, exercise equipment, or any other entertainment or recreational equipment.

(7) Any electrical or mechanical equipment, contrivance, material, or piece of apparatus or equipment.

(8) Any clock, watch, watch case, or watch movement.

(9) Any vehicle or vessel, or any component part thereof.

(c) When property described in subdivision (a) comes into the custody of a peace officer it shall become subject to the provision of Chapter 12 (commencing with Section 1407) of Title 10 of Part 2, relating to the disposal of stolen or embezzled property. Property subject to this section shall be considered stolen or embezzled property for the purposes of that chapter, and prior to being disposed of, shall have an identification mark imbedded or engraved in, or permanently affixed to it.

(d) This section does not apply to those cases or instances where any of the changes or alterations enumerated in subdivision (a) have been customarily made or done as an established practice in the ordinary and regular conduct of business, by the original manufacturer, or by his or her duly appointed direct representative, or under specific authorization from the original manufacturer.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 15, Sec. 388. Effective April 4, 2011. Operative October 1, 2011, by Sec. 636 of Ch. 15, as amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 39, Sec. 68.)

537f.
  

No storage battery composed in whole or in part of a used container, or used plate or plates and intended for use in the starting, lighting or ignition of automobiles, shall be sold or offered for sale in this State unless: the word “Rebuilt” together with the rebuilder’s name and address is labeled on one side of the battery in letters not less than one-half inch in height with a one-eighth inch stroke.

Any person selling or offering for sale such a battery in violation of this section shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, punishable by a fine not exceeding two hundred fifty dollars, or by imprisonment in the county jail for not more than six months, or by both such fine and imprisonment.

(Added by Stats. 1933, Ch. 925.)

537g.
  

(a) Unless otherwise provided by law, any person who knowingly removes, defaces, covers, alters or destroys a National Crime Information Center owner identification number from the personal property of another without permission is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by a fine not to exceed four hundred dollars ($400), imprisonment in the county jail not to exceed one year, or both.

(b) This section shall not apply to any action taken by an authorized person to dispose of property pursuant to Article 1 (commencing with Section 2080) of Chapter 4 of Title 6 of Part 4 of Division 3 of the Civil Code or pursuant to Chapter 12 (commencing with Section 1407) of Title 10 of Part 2 of this code.

(Added by Stats. 1983, Ch. 878, Sec. 2.)

538.
  

Every person, who, after mortgaging any of the property permitted to be mortgaged by the provisions of Sections 9102 and 9109 of the Commercial Code, excepting locomotives, engines, rolling stock of a railroad, steamboat machinery in actual use, and vessels, during the existence of the mortgage, with intent to defraud the mortgagee, his or her representative or assigns, takes, drives, carries away, or otherwise removes or permits the taking, driving, or carrying away, or other removal of the mortgaged property, or any part thereof, from the county where it was situated when mortgaged, without the written consent of the mortgagee, or who sells, transfers, slaughters, destroys, or in any manner further encumbers the mortgaged property, or any part thereof, or causes it to be sold, transferred, slaughtered, destroyed, or further encumbered, is guilty of theft, and is punishable accordingly. In the case of a sale, transfer, or further encumbrance at or before the time of making the sale, transfer, or encumbrance, the mortgagor informs the person to whom the sale, transfer, or encumbrance is made, of the existence of the prior mortgage, and also informs the prior mortgagee of the intended sale, transfer, or encumbrance, in writing, by giving the name and place of residence of the party to whom the sale, transfer, or encumbrance is to be made.

(Amended by Stats. 1999, Ch. 991, Sec. 54. Effective January 1, 2000. Operative July 1, 2001, by Sec. 75 of Ch. 991.)

538a.
  

Every person who signs any letter addressed to a newspaper with the name of a person other than himself and sends such letter to the newspaper, or causes it to be sent to such newspaper, with intent to lead the newspaper to believe that such letter was written by the person whose name is signed thereto, is guilty of a misdemeanor.

(Added by renumbering Section 480 (as added by Stats. 1963, Ch. 1256) by Stats. 1972, Ch. 449.)

538b.
  

Any person who wilfully wears the badge, lapel button, rosette, or any part of the garb, robe, habit, or any other recognized and established insignia or apparel of any secret society, or fraternal or religious order or organization, or of any sect, church or religious denomination, or uses the same to obtain aid or assistance within this State, with intent to deceive, unless entitled to wear and use the same under the constitution, by-laws or rules and regulations, or other laws or enactments of such society, order, organization, sect, church or religious denomination is guilty of a misdemeanor.

(Amended by Stats. 1937, Ch. 255.)

538c.
  

(a) Except as provided in subdivision (c), any person who attaches or inserts an unauthorized advertisement in a newspaper, whether alone or in concert with another, and who redistributes it to the public or who has the intent to redistribute it to the public, is guilty of the crime of theft of advertising services which shall be punishable as a misdemeanor.

(b) As used in this section:

(1) “Unauthorized advertisement” means any form of representation or communication, including any handbill, newsletter, pamphlet, or notice that contains any letters, words, or pictorial representation that is attached to or inserted in a newspaper without a contractual agreement between the publisher and an advertiser.

(2) “Newspaper” includes any newspaper, magazine, periodical, or other tangible publication, whether offered for retail sale or distributed without charge.

(c) This section does not apply if the publisher or authorized distributor of the newspaper consents to the attachment or insertion of the advertisement.

(d) This section does not apply to a newspaper distributor who is directed to insert an unauthorized advertisement by a person or company supplying the newspapers, and who is not aware that the advertisement is unauthorized.

(e) A conviction under this section shall not constitute a conviction for petty theft.

(Amended by Stats. 2002, Ch. 1134, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 2003.)

538d.
  

(a) Any person other than one who by law is given the authority of a peace officer, who willfully wears, exhibits, or uses the authorized uniform, insignia, emblem, device, label, certificate, card, or writing, of a peace officer, with the intent of fraudulently impersonating a peace officer, or of fraudulently inducing the belief that he or she is a peace officer, is guilty of a misdemeanor.

(b) (1) Any person, other than the one who by law is given the authority of a peace officer, who willfully wears, exhibits, or uses the badge of a peace officer with the intent of fraudulently impersonating a peace officer, or of fraudulently inducing the belief that he or she is a peace officer, is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment in a county jail not to exceed one year, by a fine not to exceed two thousand dollars ($2,000), or by both that imprisonment and fine.

(2) Any person who willfully wears or uses any badge that falsely purports to be authorized for the use of one who by law is given the authority of a peace officer, or which so resembles the authorized badge of a peace officer as would deceive any ordinary reasonable person into believing that it is authorized for the use of one who by law is given the authority of a peace officer, for the purpose of fraudulently impersonating a peace officer, or of fraudulently inducing the belief that he or she is a peace officer, is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment in a county jail not to exceed one year, by a fine not to exceed two thousand dollars ($2,000), or by both that imprisonment and fine.

(c) (1) Except as provided in subdivision (d), any person who willfully wears, exhibits, or uses, or who willfully makes, sells, loans, gives, or transfers to another, any badge, insignia, emblem, device, or any label, certificate, card, or writing, which falsely purports to be authorized for the use of one who by law is given the authority of a peace officer, or which so resembles the authorized badge, insignia, emblem, device, label, certificate, card, or writing of a peace officer as would deceive an ordinary reasonable person into believing that it is authorized for the use of one who by law is given the authority of a peace officer, is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment in a county jail not to exceed six months, by a fine not to exceed two thousand dollars ($2,000), or by both that imprisonment and fine, except that any person who makes or sells any badge under the circumstances described in this subdivision is subject to a fine not to exceed fifteen thousand dollars ($15,000).

(2) A local law enforcement agency in the jurisdiction that files charges against a person for a violation of paragraph (1) shall seize the badge, insignia, emblem, device, label, certificate, card, or writing described in paragraph (1).

(d) (1) The head of an agency that employs peace officers, as defined in Sections 830.1 and 830.2, is authorized to issue identification in the form of a badge, insignia, emblem, device, label, certificate, card, or writing that clearly states that the person has honorably retired following service as a peace officer from that agency. The identification authorized pursuant to this subdivision is separate and distinct from the identification authorized by Article 2 (commencing with Section 25450) of Chapter 2 of Division 5 of Title 4 of Part 6.

(2) If the head of an agency issues a badge to an honorably retired peace officer that is not affixed to a plaque or other memento commemorating the retiree’s service for the agency, the words “Honorably Retired” shall be clearly visible above, underneath, or on the badge itself.

(3) The head of an agency that employs peace officers as defined in Sections 830.1 and 830.2 is authorized to revoke identification granted pursuant to this subdivision in the event of misuse or abuse.

(4) For the purposes of this subdivision, the term “honorably retired” does not include an officer who has agreed to a service retirement in lieu of termination.

(e) (1) Vendors of law enforcement uniforms shall verify that a person purchasing a uniform identifying a law enforcement agency is an employee of the agency identified on the uniform. Presentation and examination of a valid identification card with a picture of the person purchasing the uniform and identification, on the letterhead of the law enforcement agency, of the person buying the uniform as an employee of the agency identified on the uniform shall be sufficient verification.

(2) Any uniform vendor who sells a uniform identifying a law enforcement agency, without verifying that the purchaser is an employee of the agency, is guilty of a misdemeanor, punishable by a fine of not more than one thousand dollars ($1,000).

(3) This subdivision shall not apply if the uniform is to be used solely as a prop for a motion picture, television, video production, or a theatrical event, and prior written permission has been obtained from the identified law enforcement agency.

(Amended by Stats. 2014, Ch. 514, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 2015.)

538e.
  

(a) Any person, other than an officer or member of a fire department, who willfully wears, exhibits, or uses the authorized uniform, insignia, emblem, device, label, certificate, card, or writing of an officer or member of a fire department or a deputy state fire marshal, with the intent of fraudulently impersonating an officer or member of a fire department or the Office of the State Fire Marshal, or of fraudulently inducing the belief that he or she is an officer or member of a fire department or the Office of the State Fire Marshal, is guilty of a misdemeanor.

(b) (1) Any person, other than the one who by law is given the authority of an officer or member of a fire department, or a deputy state fire marshal, who willfully wears, exhibits, or uses the badge of a fire department or the Office of the State Fire Marshal with the intent of fraudulently impersonating an officer, or member of a fire department, or a deputy state fire marshal, or of fraudulently inducing the belief that he or she is an officer or member of a fire department, or a deputy state fire marshal, is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment in a county jail not to exceed one year, by a fine not to exceed two thousand dollars ($2,000), or by both that imprisonment and fine.

(2) Any person who willfully wears or uses any badge that falsely purports to be authorized for the use of one who by law is given the authority of an officer or member of a fire department, or a deputy state fire marshal, or which so resembles the authorized badge of an officer or member of a fire department, or a deputy state fire marshal as would deceive any ordinary reasonable person into believing that it is authorized for the use of one who by law is given the authority of an officer or member of a fire department or a deputy state fire marshal, for the purpose of fraudulently impersonating an officer or member of a fire department, or a deputy state fire marshal, or of fraudulently inducing the belief that he or she is an officer or member of a fire department, or a deputy state fire marshal, is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by imprisonment in a county jail not to exceed one year, by a fine not to exceed two thousand dollars ($2,000), or by both that imprisonment and fine.

(c) Any person who willfully wears, exhibits, or uses, or who willfully makes, sells, loans, gives, or transfers to another, any badge, insignia, emblem, device, or any label, certificate, card, or writing, which falsely purports to be authorized for the use of one who by law is given the authority of an officer, or member of a fire department or a deputy state fire marshal, or which so resembles the authorized badge, insignia, emblem, device, label, certificate, card, or writing of an officer or member of a fire department or a deputy state fire marshal as would deceive an ordinary reasonable person into believing that it is authorized for use by an officer or member of a fire department or a deputy state fire marshal, is guilty of a misdemeanor, except that any person who makes or sells any badge under the circumstances described in this subdivision is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable by a fine not to exceed fifteen thousand dollars ($15,000).

(d) Any person who, for the purpose of selling, leasing or otherwise disposing of merchandise, supplies or equipment used in fire prevention or suppression, falsely represents, in any manner whatsoever, to any other person that he or she is a fire marshal, fire inspector or member of a fire department, or that he or she has the approval, endorsement or authorization of any fire marshal, fire inspector or fire department, or member thereof, is guilty of a misdemeanor.

(e) (1) Vendors of uniforms shall verify that a person purchasing a uniform identifying a firefighting agency or department is an employee or authorized member of the agency or department identified on the uniform. Examination of a valid photo identification card issued by a firefighting agency or department that designates the person as an employee or authorized member of the agency or department identified on the uniform shall be sufficient verification.

(2) If a person purchasing a uniform does not have a valid photo identification card issued by a firefighting agency or department, the person shall present an official letter of authorization from the firefighting agency or department designating that person as an employee or authorized member of the agency or department. The person shall also present a government issued photo identification card bearing the same name as listed in the letter of authorization issued by the agency or department.

(3) Any uniform vendor who sells a uniform identifying a firefighting agency or department without verifying that the purchaser is an employee or authorized member of the agency or department is guilty of a misdemeanor, punishable by a fine of not more than one thousand dollars ($1,000).

(4) This subdivision shall not apply if the uniform is to be used solely as a prop for a motion picture, television, video production, or a theatrical event, and prior written permission has been obtained from the identified firefighting agency or department.

(f) This section shall not apply to either of the following:

(1) Use of a badge solely as a prop for a motion picture, television, or video production, or an entertainment or theatrical event.

(2) A badge supplied by a recognized employee organization as defined in Section 3501 of the Government Code representing firefighters or a state or international organization to which it is affiliated.

(Amended by Stats. 2009, Ch. 100, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 2010.)

538f.
  

Any person, other than an employee of a public utility or district as defined in Sections 216 and 11503 of the Public Utilities Code, respectively, who willfully presents himself or herself to a utility or district customer with the intent of fraudulently personating an employee of a public utility or district, or of fraudulently inducing the belief that he or she is an employee of a public utility or district, is guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be punished by imprisonment in a county jail not to exceed six months, or by a fine not to exceed one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by both that fine and imprisonment. Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit conduct that arguably constitutes protected activity under state labor law or the National Labor Relations Act (Title 29, United States Code, Section 151 and following).

(Added by Stats. 1995, Ch. 460, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 1996.)

538g.
  

(a) Any person, other than a state, county, city, special district, or city and county officer or employee, who willfully wears, exhibits, or uses the authorized badge, photographic identification card, or insignia of a state, county, city, special district, or city and county officer or employee, with the intent of fraudulently personating a state, county, city, special district, or city and county officer or employee, or of fraudulently inducing the belief that he or she is a state, county, city, special district, or city and county officer or employee, is guilty of a misdemeanor.

(b) Any person who willfully wears, exhibits, or uses, or willfully makes, sells, loans, gives, or transfers to another, any badge, photographic identification card, or insignia, which falsely purports to be for the use of a state, county, city, special district, or city and county officer or employee, or which so resembles the authorized badge, photographic identification card, or insignia of a state, county, city, special district, or city and county officer or employee as would deceive an ordinary reasonable person into believing that it is authorized for use by a state, county, city, special district, or city and county officer or employee, is guilty of a misdemeanor, except that any person who makes or sells any badge under the circumstances described in this subdivision is subject to a fine not to exceed fifteen thousand dollars ($15,000).

(c) This section shall not apply to either of the following:

(1) Use of a badge solely as a prop for a motion picture, television, or video production, or an entertainment or theatrical event.

(2) A badge supplied by a recognized employee organization as defined in Section 3501 of the Government Code or a state or international organization to which it is affiliated.

(Added by Stats. 2004, Ch. 22, Sec. 2. Effective March 5, 2004.)

538.5.
  

Every person who transmits or causes to be transmitted by means of wire, radio or television communication any words, sounds, writings, signs, signals, or pictures for the purpose of furthering or executing a scheme or artifice to obtain, from a public utility, confidential, privileged, or proprietary information, trade secrets, trade lists, customer records, billing records, customer credit data, or accounting data by means of false or fraudulent pretenses, representations, personations, or promises is guilty of an offense punishable by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170, or by imprisonment in the county jail not exceeding one year.

(Amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 15, Sec. 389. Effective April 4, 2011. Operative October 1, 2011, by Sec. 636 of Ch. 15, as amended by Stats. 2011, Ch. 39, Sec. 68.)

539.
  

Every person who, with the intent to defraud, certifies that a person ordered by the court to participate in community service as a condition of probation has completed the number of hours of community service prescribed in the court order and the participant has not completed the prescribed number of hours, is guilty of a misdemeanor.

(Added by Stats. 1993, Ch. 371, Sec. 1. Effective January 1, 1994.)

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