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Name: Vigilant Insurance Company v. Chiu
Case #: B209550
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 3
Opinion Date: 06/29/2009

An order for restitution pursuant to Penal Code section 1202.4 does not prohibit the victim or victim’s assignee from seeking civil recovery based on the same facts from which the criminal conviction arose. Appellant was convicted of theft from his employer, ViewSonic, and ordered to pay restitution for the value of the property, lost profits and opportunity costs, and pre-order interest. ViewSonic’s insurance company, Vigilant, paid ViewSonic for the loss of property, minus deductible, and ViewSonic executed a release and assignment of rights against appellant. Vigilant sued appellant and was awarded a sum covering actual loss, damages, interests, and costs. The appellate court ruled that the civil action did not result in an unlawful duplicate judgment for the following reasons. Subdivision (j) of section 1202.4, holds that any restitution paid shall be credited to any other judgments for the same losses obtained against defendant. Although the restitution statute permits enforcement as if the order were a civil judgment, it does not resolve civil liability, and a civil judgment does not serve the state’s interests in rehabilitation and deterrence.