Don’t Let a Criminal Larceny Charge Ruin Your Life!

Arrested for Larceny or Shoplifting in Massachusetts?

A Massachusetts theft, embezzlement or larceny charge can have serious consequences if not handled properly. The earlier you can get a skilled MA criminal defense lawyer to help you, the better your chances of beating the case. Larceny might be the theft or any object, pick pocketing, purse snatching, stealing funds from a business (embezzlement) or check larceny / cashing a check that didn’t belong to you.

Massachusetts penalties for larceny are divided into the categories of larceny over $250 in value, and larceny under $250. They can go up to :

  • 5 years in prison and a $25,000 fine if the property stolen exceed $250 in value.
  • 1 year in prison and a fine of $300 if the property stolen is less than $250 in value.

Larceny from a person is a misdemeanor charge in Massachusetts.

If you are facing a Massachusetts shoplifting charge, the specific penalty varies depending on the value of the goods and the number of prior offenses. For shoplifting items valued at less than $100, the penalties are:

  • up to a $250 fine for a 1st shoplifting offense;
  • up to a $500 fine for a 2nd shoplifting offense;
  • imprisonment of up to 2 years for a 3rd shoplifting offense.

If you are convicted of shoplifting items valued at equal to or more than $100, the penalty for a first offense can go up to 2 1/2 years and a fine of $1000.

Please refer to my shoplifting law page for more details on shoplifting laws & how to beat a shoplifting charge.

Embezzlement is very similar to larceny, but in an embezzlement case you have an established and legitimate reason to have access to the funds or goods allegedly embezzled. For example in a business situation were you had necessary access to bank accounts, or funds, it is not the same thing as taking something which you never should have had possession or domain over.

Embezzlement & Larceny Laws & Defense Strategies

There are a number of strong defense strategies to beat a larceny charge. Depending on the situation and the evidence against you, I’ll try to get the arrest voided at at show cause hearing. There are also a number of constitutional rights that can come into play, and I’ll file a number of motions to make sure that any alleged evidence against you was legally obtained, and that your rights were not violated.

For larceny or embezzlement of larger amounts, full or partial restitution is frequently offered in exchange for reducing or dropping the charges. The victim frequently will agree to that if it means getting the money back promptly. For this reason, many embezzlement charges never go to trial. A smart defense lawyer will usually find a way to settle the case that is agreeable to all parties.

In an embezzlement case, it is easier to argue that a simple honest mistake was made, since you were legitimately in contact with the funds or bank accounts where the money was taken.

There may be an opportunity to get the charges dismissed entirely in exchange for restitution, i.e., a full financial settlement to the victim.

I am in different courts around Massachusetts every day, defending my clients rights and freedom on charges of larceny, grand larceny, embezzlement and many other criminal charges. If you’ve been accused of larceny/shoplifting, stealing, theft, check cashing/bounced check, or any other criminal offense, and need someone who will fight for your rights, call me anytime for a consultation.

By calling, you have nothing to lose but the tremendous emotional stress your arrest has brought you. Defending people is what I do for a living. Call to set up a free consultation now.



Chapter 266: Section 30 Larceny; general provisions and penalties


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    • Russell J. Matson

      Founding Attorney

    Please call us today for a free consultation on any criminal charge in Massachusetts. I will take the time to talk to you about your exact circumstances, what you can expect could happen to you, and how I can help protect and defend your legal rights and your freedom in court.