Unlike third degree grand theft, second degree grand theft is a charge that encompasses a value of $20,000 - $100,000. That means that if you are accused of stealing (temporarily or permanently depriving a lawful owner or possessor) of $20,000 - $100,000 in cash or property, then you could face a maximum of 15 years in state prison with a second degree grand theft charge.
Grand theft in the third degree is usually an expensive shoplifting incident. While petit theft entails all value under $300, grand theft in the third degree is for $300 to $20,000 in value. This usually includes all shoplifting incidents as most shoplifting incidents rarely net over $20,000.
Grand theft second degree is a more serious because the allegation of a theft up to $100,000 is usually more organized, which may lead to additional charges. Grand theft second degree could be an embezzlement matter (white-collar crime), fraud, or even the fee for home repairs in a contracting without a license case.
In any event, grand theft second degree carries stiff prison penalties, and restitution, which is almost unavoidable unless the alleged victim has been compensated prior to arrest. Since the charge itself alleges over $20,000 in theft, Pretrial Intervention (PTI) is not an option. In Miami-Dade County, PTI is only available (provided the alleged victim approves and the accused is otherwise eligible) if the restitution is $5,000 or less. That means in order to get into PTI for a second degree grand theft, the accused must pay down the restitution upfront.
In Broward, PTI is rarely offered for a second-degree felony, if ever.
The point is, these cases are much more complex than simple shoplifting matters as the liklihood of trial increases. If you are a non-U.S. citizen, a plea of guilty or no contest to grand theft in the second degree can trigger mandatory deportation.