See Also: Shoplifting
In Canadian Law theft is first defined by the value of the item(s) stolen. If the value exceeds $5000, the punishment is up to 10 years in prison. If the value is under $5000, the punishment is up to 2 years in prison.
Various factors are considered by the court in determining an appropriate sentence. For example, theft from an employer (employee theft) is considered more serious and more deserving of significant punishment than a simple theft of opportunity. Breach of trust thefts, such as a home-care nurse stealing from a patient, an accountant stealing from their client or a corporate officer misusing company money are also considered significant aggravating factors. In certain cases, the Criminal Code specifies more severe punishment depending on the type of theft.
Theft from an employer, for example, is often considered an aggravating factor by judges. For more information click here.
The Legal Definition:
In general, theft is committed when a person fraudulently and a lawful right takes, or fraudulently and without lawful right converts to his use or to the use of another person, anything, whether animate or inanimate, with intent:
to deprive, temporarily or absolutely, the owner of it, or a person who has a special property or interest in it, of the thing or of his property or interest in it;
to pledge it or deposit it as security;
to part with it under a condition with respect to its return that the person who parts with it may be unable to perform;
to deal with it in such a manner that it cannot be restored in the condition in which it was at the time it was taken or converted.
A theft is completed when, with intent to steal anything, a person moves it or causes it to move or to be moved, or begins to cause it to become movable.
If you are under investigation or charged with theft, call our Vancouver criminal law office for a free consultation.