Chapter 5. Motor Vehicle Theft Prevention of California Vehicle Code >> Division 4. >> Chapter 5.
This chapter shall be known and may be cited as the "Motor
Vehicle Theft Prevention Act."
(a) Pursuant to Section 1872.8 of the Insurance Code,
proceeds from the assessment imposed thereunder shall be used to fund
prevention and increased investigation of economic automobile theft.
Funds received pursuant to Section 1872.8 shall be deposited in the
Motor Vehicle Account and appropriated to the Department of the
California Highway Patrol for prevention and enhanced investigative
efforts to deter economic automobile theft.
(b) Moneys received by the commissioner pursuant to this section
shall be used to fund (1) enhanced programs to prevent and
investigate economic automobile theft; (2) a program directed at
investigating and interdicting the export of stolen motor vehicles
and stolen motor vehicle components across an international border;
and (3) to operate the CAL H.E.A.T (Californians Help Eliminate Auto
Theft) program. Moneys received by a local law enforcement agency
pursuant to this section shall be used to fund enhanced programs to
prevent and investigate economic automobile theft and shall not be
used to supplant or replace funding of existing personnel or
The commissioner shall submit an annual report to the Legislature,
no later than 90 days following the completion of the fiscal year,
accounting for all funds received and disbursed pursuant to this
section. The report shall detail (A) the uses to which those funds
were put, including payment of salaries and expenses, purchase of
equipment and supplies, and other expenditures by type; and (B)
results achieved as a consequence of expenditures made, including the
number of investigations, arrests, complaints filed, convictions,
and the number of vehicles recovered and amounts of property losses
(c) As used in this section, "economic automobile theft" means
automobile theft perpetrated for financial gain, including, but not
limited to, the following:
(1) Theft of a motor vehicle for financial gain.
(2) Reporting that a motor vehicle has been stolen for the purpose
of filing a false insurance claim.
(3) Engaging in any act prohibited by Chapter 3.5 (commencing with
Section 10801) of Division 4 this code.
(4) Switching of vehicle identification numbers to obtain title to
a stolen motor vehicle.
The Department of the California Highway Patrol shall
establish a program entitled "CAL H.E.A.T." (Help Eliminate Auto
Theft) for the purpose of reducing the incidence of economic auto
theft in California. The program shall be an anti-auto theft program
with a toll-free telephone hotline operator funded by the department
using funds distributed to it pursuant to Section 10901. The hotline
operator shall channel reports from the public regarding auto thefts
to state and local law enforcement agencies. In the annual report,
the commissioner shall report on the results of this program,
including the number of calls from the public reporting a suspected
motor vehicle theft, the number of arrests, complaints filed,
convictions, and vehicles recovered, and the amount of property
losses saved as a result of the program.
If funded by admitted insurers in this state, the program may
offer rewards for reports that lead to the arrest and conviction of a
person engaged in economic automobile theft. If so funded, the
Department of the California Highway Patrol shall establish a claims
board, which shall include appointments from state and local law
enforcement agencies and the insurance industry, to determine the
amount of individual awards.
The commissioner may develop a public education campaign to
deter participation in auto insurance fraud and to encourage
reporting of fraudulent claims.