Shoplifting Defence Lawyers in Toronto | 416-DEFENCE

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AVOID A CRIMINAL RECORD – 99% SUCCESS RATE.

The Firm’s Shoplifting Lawyers in Toronto regularly defend First Offenders facing Shoplifting or Theft Under $5000 allegations from Sephora, Winners, Canadian Tire, Loblaws, The Bay, Shoppers Drug Mart, Wholefoods, Aldo, Toronto Eaton Centre Merchants, Yorkdale Shopping Centre Retailers and many other businesses who aggressively prosecute these charges. We have successfully defended numerous people charged with Theft Under $5000 who work at CIBC, BMO, Investors Group, Hospitals, Retail Merchants, Municipal and Provincial Governments among others. Specifically, we have actively defended Real Estate Agents, Retiress, Students, Pharmacists, Financial District Professionals, Paralegals and even internal staff employed by the Law Society of Upper Canada all facing allegations of Shoplifting in Toronto. We frequently handle sophisticated financial crimes, the Criminal Law Group recently secured a withdrawal of Theft Under $5,000, where a BMO bank teller was accused of robbing the bank on the job in its new R. v. G.G. [2015].We regularly defend allegations of Shoplifting in Toronto Courts. Specifically Old City Hall, College Park, Metro North, Metro West and Scarborough court. It is important to hire a lawyer with local experience in the specific courts you are charged.

In January, 2017, the Firm resolved four (4) Fraud related allegations without a criminal record against a Canada Post employee charged with defrauding the Bank of Nova Scotia over $50,000.00 in its R. v. S.A. [2017]. The Firm is frequently consulted by the Media with respect to Theft and Fraud allegations in Toronto and often appears on CityNews680News and other Toronto Media organization including Global News.

We provide expert advice on avoiding detection of your charge by your employer, including erasing all fingerprints and photos obtained by Toronto Police. Our service includes advice on travel to the United States and other cross boarder complications associated with being charged with Theft Under $5000.

This is likely your first offence, our objective is to provide you with a second chance, without a criminal record. Nearly every case of shoplifting is resolved without a criminal conviction. Your case will be defended directly by an experienced Toronto Shoplifting Lawyer.

The Firm recently resolved a $60,000.00 HomeSense fraud ring without a criminal conviction in its R. v. S.C. [2015]. In its new R. v. N.B. [2015], the Criminal Law Group further resolved a Target Canada employee theft ring without any criminal convictions. Beyond simple shoplifting, the Criminal Law Group has successfully resolved a number of theft allegations by employees from their employers, including retail merchants and even employees of Canadian Banks, including BMO and CIBC. It it’s R. v. A.N. [2013] the Criminal Law Group resolved a $56,000.00 RBC Fraud allegation without a criminal record.

We handle a myriad of minor thefts which have the potential for profound travel, and employment consequences. Frequently, employers require prospective employees to disclose any convictions or outstanding charges for theft. We have successfully diverted a range of theft related charges, providing our clients a fresh start. We critically analyze surveillance and other police disclosure, often having charges resolved without trial.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Theft?
What is the Difference between Theft Under $5,000 and Theft Over $5,000?
What is the Difference between Theft and Fraud?
What is the Difference between Theft and Shoplifting?
What is Your Success Rate?
Where do you Defend Allegations of Shoplifting?
What are some of the Penalties for Theft and Shoplifting?
What are the Consequence of Having a Criminal Record associated with Shoplifting?
What is Break and Enter?
What are some of the Penalties for Break and Enter?
What is the Difference between Theft and Break and Enter?
What is Robbery?
What are some of the Penalties for a Robbery Conviction?

Additional Resources

First Offenders & Theft
Sentencing Factors
Keeping Your Charges Private
Release from Police Custody
Theft From Your Employer
Resolving Shoplifting Charges
U.S. Waivers

What is Theft?

Section 322(1) of the Criminal Code sets out that an individual commits theft when he or she fraudulently and without colour of risk takes, or fraudulently and without colour of right converts to his use or to the use of another person, anything with intent. The individual must intend one of the following four things:

(a) 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;

(b) To pledge it or deposit it as security;

(c) To part with it under a condition with respect to its return that the person who parts with it may be unable to perform; or

(d) 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.

Therefore, to secure a conviction for theft the Crown must prove the accused: (1) took or converted property, (2) without permission and without a good faith belief he or she had permission and (3) the accused intended to do so.

What is the Difference between Theft Under $5,000 and Theft Over $5,000?

Section 334 of the Criminal Code sets out theft charges are punished as Theft under $5,000 or Theft over $5,000. The elements of the offence that the Crown must prove are the same for both, except for the monetary value of the theft. For Theft under charges, the Crown must prove the stolen amount was under $5,000; and for theft over charges, the Crown must prove the amount was over $5,000.

The two offences also differ in terms of penalty. Section 334 sets out that Theft over $5,000 is an indictable offence, punishable by up to ten years imprisonment. Comparatively, Section 334 sets out that Theft under $5,000 is a hybrid offence and can be prosecuted either summarily or by indictment. If prosecuted by indictment, the accused is liable to a term of imprisonment not exceeding two years.

What is the Difference between Theft and Fraud?

The main difference between theft and fraud is in the intent element. With fraud, one intends to hide his or her unlawful act, whereas with theft there is often no such intention to hide your guilty act. For example, taking money from a bank is theft, whereas embezzling money and trying to hide that fact is fraud.

What is the Difference between Theft and Shoplifting?

Shoplifting is a specific kind of theft. Shoplifting occurs when an individual takes an item from a store without paying for it. Typically, the charges in such a situation would be Theft Under $5,000.

With shoplifting, it is also possible to be charged with possession of stolen property in addition to theft.

What is Your Success Rate?

For first time offenders with single counts of Fraud or Theft Under $5,000, 99% of our cases are resolved without a Criminal Record. It is important to remember that no lawyer can guarantee any outcome and that past results are not necessarily indicative of future results, each case is always weighed on its own merits.

Where Do You Defend Allegations of Shoplifting?

We primarily defend charges of Shoplifting in Toronto Courts, specifically College Park, Old City Hall, Metro North, Metro West and Scarborough court. When deciding which lawyer is right for you, it is critical to hire counsel in the specific court your are charged. Having a lawyer who actively practices in the Courthouses you are charged helps ensure the charge is handled efficiently.

What are some of the Penalties for Theft and Shoplifting?

Penalties for theft and shoplifting will vary depending on the specific circumstances of the offence, the characteristics of the offender and the presence of other aggravating or mitigating factors.

Section 334 of the Criminal Code sets out that a conviction of theft over $5,000 can result in a penalty of ten years imprisonment. Comparatively, if an individual is convicted of theft under $5,000 (which would likely be the charge with shoplifting), this can result in a penalty of two years imprisonment if the Crown proceeds by indictment.

What are the Consequence of Having a Criminal Record associated with Shoplifting?

Some of the consequences of having a criminal record associated with shoplifting may include travel restrictions, lack of employment opportunities and criminal sanctions.

A criminal conviction will appear on your record when you try to travel to another country. Having a criminal record may prohibit you from entering foreign countries. For example, the United States has strict policies about allowing individuals with criminal records to enter.

A criminal conviction may also impact employment opportunities. Many employers require criminal record checks and may not be willing to employ you if there is a criminal conviction on your record.

A criminal conviction may also result in criminal sanctions. You could be ordered to pay a fine or restitution. You could also be subject to conditions if you are released that require you to complete community service. It is also possible you could face imprisonment, depending on the circumstances of the offence and the individual offender.

What is Break and Enter?

Section 348 of the Criminal Code makes it a criminal offence to break and enter into a dwelling house or any other building. There are three ways the offence can be committed:

  • By breaking and entering a place with intent to commit an indictable offence therein;
  • By breaking and entering a place and committing an indictable offence therein, or
  • By breaking out of a place after
    1. Committing an indictable offence therein, or
    2. Entering the place with intent to commit an indictable offence therein,

Section 348(2) makes certain evidentiary presumptions for break and enter proceedings, so evidence that an accused:

(a) Broke and entered a place or attempted to break and enter a place is, in the absence of evidence to the contrary, proof that he broke and entered the place or attempted to do so, as the case may be, with intent to commit an indictable offence therein; or

(b) Broke out of a place is, in the absence of any evidence to the contrary, proof that he broke out after

(i) Committing an indictable offence therein, or

(ii) Entering with intent to commit an indictable offence therein.

What are some of the Penalties for Break and Enter?

Penalties for break and enter will vary depending on the specific circumstances of the offence, the characteristics of the offender and the presence of other aggravating or mitigating factors.

Section 348(2) of the Criminal Code sets out that a conviction of break and enter in a dwelling house can result in a penalty of life imprisonment when the Crown proceeds by indictment. If the offence is convicted in relation to any other building the offence is punishable by up to ten years imprisonment when the Crown proceeds by indictment.

What is the Difference between Theft and Break and Enter?

The difference between theft and break and enter is that theft requires someone to take or fraudulently convert property for his or her own use. Comparatively, break and enter does not always involve theft or the taking of property. Breaking and entering occurs when an individual enters a place forcefully and without lawful entry. The illegal act with break and enter comes from entering a place unlawfully, not by necessarily taking anything, which is what theft requires.

What is Robbery?

Section 343 of the Criminal Code sets out that every one commits robbery that does one of the following four things:

(a) Steals, and for the purpose of extorting whatever is stolen or to prevent or overcome resistance to the stealing, uses violence or threats of violence to a person or property;

(b) Steals from any person and, at the time he steals or immediately before or immediately thereafter, wounds, beats, strikes or uses any personal violence to that person;

(c) Assaults any person with intent to steal from him; or

(d) Steals from any person while armed with an offensive weapon or imitation thereof.

The term “steal” is defined as “to commit theft.”

What are some of the Penalties for a Robbery Conviction?

Penalties for robbery will vary depending on the specific circumstances of the offence, the characteristics of the offender and victim, and the presence of other aggravating or mitigating factors.

Section 344 of the Criminal Code sets out that a conviction of robbery can result in a penalty of life imprisonment. There are mandatory minimum punishments of several years imprisonment when a firearm is involved.

We take allegations of theft very seriously, considering the profound travel and employment consequences associated with a conviction. We critically scrutinize retail store surveillance video, witness statements and police disclosure to strategize your best defence.

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416-DEFENCE | 416-333-3623

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