Theft and Shoplifting Attorney

Theft Attorney

The term theft encompasses several types of offenses, ranging from theft of goods, shoplifting, theft of services, theft by check, theft of trade secrets, vehicle theft, and even theft of cable television signals. Thefts can be classified as misdemeanors or felonies, depending on the conduct and the amount or value of the item taken.

The typical theft at the misdemeanor level is petty theft from a retail store, commonly called shoplifting. Other common theft and larceny cases include theft of a vehicle, even if the keys are left in the car. Theft in large gathering places is common, such as schools or universities.

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A recent number of cases involve credit card theft, whether the actual card is taken or the numbers used without the credit card in possession. All of those cases fall under the purview of theft and larceny related charges.

There is typically room for discussion during plea-bargaining for many types of thefts, especially with first time offenders. At the same time, some thefts are difficult to prove, making trial a possibility. If you've been arrested, whether on simple shoplifting or a check-cashing scheme, call an Attorney for a consultation at 512-761-5297.

Moral turpitude is the terms for a legal idea meaning "conduct that is considered contrary to community standards of justice, honesty or good morals." The concept of moral turpitude can be used to identify or describe certain crimes that involve an "act of baseness, vileness or depravity in the private and social duties which a man owes to his fellowmen, or to society in general, contrary to the accepted and customary rule of right and duty between man and man."

The specific crimes or arrests that are deemed Crimes of Moral Turpitude has significance in several areas of law, especially for those arrested for an offense considered a Crime of Moral Turpitude. First, prior conviction of a crime of moral turpitude (or in some jurisdictions, moral turpitude conduct, even without a conviction) is considered to have a bearing on the honesty of a person, especially if that person is a witness in other legal proceedings. A conviction (and in some areas, a mere arrest) may be grounds to deny or revoke a professional license such as a teaching credential, Attorney license to practice law, or other licensed profession that is regulated by the state or federal government. Lastly, it is of great importance for immigration purposes, as offenses defined as involving moral turpitude are considered bars to immigration into the U.S.

In most jurisdictions, a Theft Arrest or Arrest involving taking another???s property permanently, is considered a Crime of Moral Turpitude, meaning an arrested for Theft or Theft related offenses need to be taken care of by a qualified attorney as soon as possible, in an effort to reduce or dismiss the charge from the person's record.

Theft & Larceny Laws Across the United States

Theft laws vary state to state, ranging from a slap on the wrist fine to years in state prison. In Texas, a Class B theft is punishable by up to 180 days in jail and a fine up to $2,000. Theft in greater amounts, up to $1,500 (the value of what was stolen), is punishable by up to one year in jail and a fine up to $4,000. Thefts over $1,500 can become Felony Theft. The penalties and punishments increase as the value of stolen property increases.

Do I Need a Theft Attorney?

Yes. Any type of Theft arrest can be a negative factor when considering your criminal record, court dates, court ordered rehabilitation programs, and fines. If convicted, the Theft offense would remain on your record for life; there is no drop off period.

Even misdemeanor convictions for theft result in what is known as a Crime of Mortal Turpitude, meaning a theft conviction can stop you from obtaining licensing for businesses or occupations (such as teachers or beauty salons). A Crime of Moral Turpitude also means that a conviction may cause a loss of rights for immigration purposes, and can even stop you from civil duties, such as serving on a jury. It is always best to speak with an Attorney to go over your options and choose how to proceed.


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