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A criminal act in which property belonging to another is taken without that person's consent.

The term theft is sometimes used synonymously with Larceny. Theft, however, is actually a broader term, encompassing many forms of deceitful taking of property, including swindling, Embezzlement, and False Pretenses. Some states categorize all these offenses under a single statutory crime of theft.


Burglary; Robbery.


n. the generic term for all crimes in which a person intentionally and fraudulently takes personal property of another without permission or consent and with the intent to convert it to the taker's use (including potential sale). In many states, if the value of the property taken is low (for example, less than $500) the crime is "petty theft," but it is "grand theft" for larger amounts, designated misdemeanor, or felony, respectively. Theft is synonymous with "larceny." Although robbery (taking by force), burglary (taken by entering unlawfully), and embezzlement (stealing from an employer) are all commonly thought of as theft, they are distinguished by the means and methods used, and are separately designated as those types of crimes in criminal charges and statutory punishments. (See: larceny, robbery, burglary, embezzlement)


in English law, now defined in statutory terms as the dishonest appropriation of property belonging to another with the intention of permanently depriving the other of it. The law has, however, been complicated by semantic arguments, leading the Court of Appeal to say that the law is in urgent need of reform to make cases understandable to juries. Wheel-clamping is not theft in England (contrary to the position in Scotland) because there is not the intention to permanently deprive.

In Scots criminal law, the felonious taking or appropriation (or retention) of the property of another without his consent and (in most cases, but not necessarily) with the intention to deprive him of it permanently. Wheel-clamping has been held to be theft in Scotland, even although the vehicle is not moved by the clamper.

THEFT, crimes. This word is sometimes used as synonymous with larceny, (q.v.) but it is not so technical. Ayliffe's Pand. 581 2 Swift's Dig. 309.
     2. In the Scotch law, this is a proper and technical word, and signifies the secret and felonious abstraction of the property of another for sake of lucre, without his consent. Alison, Princ. Cr. Law of Scotl. 250.

References in periodicals archive ?
Drawn nicely near the rail in Box 2, Show Stealer was dropped out in a field of 16 runners, but swooped late to scoop the PS46,192.50 pot.
The use of malware designed to harvest consumers' digital data -- known as password stealers -- has seen a significant rise in 2019.
Encountering dream stealers can be as simple as dealing with one's own negative thinking or being around people who think settling - instead of pursuing dreams and goals - is good enough.
Proofpoint said: "While Vega Stealer is not the most complex or stealthy malware in circulation today, it demonstrates the flexibility of malware, authors, and actors to achieve criminal objectives.
Only two and three-quarter lengths behind Dancing Star in seventh in a red-hot handicap at Newmarket's July meeting, Show Stealer was a good fifth at that track next time and then recorded an eyecatching fourth over 7f at York in August.
SHOW STEALER is fancied to seize the limelight in the 888Sport Charity Sprint 3.35, (CH4) at York.
Hackers break into about 77,000 Steam user accounts every month, researchers at ( Kaspersky Labs revealed  Tuesday, thanks to a form of malware known as "Steam Stealer." Steam, owned by Valve Corp., is an Internet-based video game distribution network that offers multiplayer gaming and social media interaction.
Show stealer Embrace Another Fall blows in on a desert wind before the thunderclap of power chords and a cameo vocal from Julie Murphy.
A 29-year-old chauffeur allegedly teamed up with a "serial car stealer" and stole the key of his employer's villa to sneak off with the latter's four-wheel drive car worth Dh215,000.
These days, a 75 percent success rate is considered to be the minimum for judging the success of a base stealer. That would eliminate almost every Red Sox player before 1970; the 70-plus percent success rates of players like Tommy Harper, Billy Werber, Jackie Jensen and Carlton Fisk were excellent for the years they played.
Ms El-Mahroug, nicknamed "Ruby the Heart Stealer", had appeared in court after having failed to show on two previous dates.