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Types of theft crimes in New York

New York law defines larceny as depriving another of his or her property for personal gain. The state differentiates between petit larceny, which is a misdemeanor offense, and grand larceny, a felony offense.

Here is more information about shoplifting or theft charges in New York and how the state penalizes these crimes.

Actions constituting larceny

Under New York law, a person can commit larceny in the following ways:

  • Taking a person’s property without consent (trespassory taking)
  • Committing fraud (larceny by trick)
  • Embezzling
  • Concealing a material fact through false pretenses
  • Acquiring lost property
  • Writing bad checks
  • Making false promises
  • Committing extortion

Petit larceny

Petit larceny applies to the theft of items worth less than $1,000. This crime constitutes a Class A misdemeanor in New York. Convicted offenders may receive a fine of up to $1,000 and up to one year in prison.

Grand larceny

Thefts exceeding $1,000 are felony offenses in New York and carry a mandatory minimum one-year prison sentence. Penalties vary depending on the value of the stolen items as follows:

  • $1,000 to $3,000 or a credit card or motor vehicle with any value: Class E felony, fines and one to four years in prison
  • $3,000 to $50,000 or an ATM and its contents: Class D felony, fines and one to seven years in prison
  • $50,000 to $100,000 or larceny involving extortion: Class C felony, fines and one to 15 years in prison
  • $100,000 or more: Class B felony, fines and up to 25 years in prison with a minimum sentence of one-third the maximum sentence

In addition to fines and prison terms, people who commit larceny in New York are also subject to civil penalties. This includes the retail price of stolen merchandise up to $1,500 for items the person did not return in sellable condition, along with a fine of five times the retail price of stolen goods up to $500.

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Office Location

Neil S. Ruskin
16 Court Street, Suite 2000
Brooklyn, NY 11241

Local: (718) 237-1547
Fax: 718-875-4011

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