In our increasingly digital and online world, we have heard a lot more about the issue of identity theft in the past decades. Identity theft differs from traditional theft crimes, like robbery or burglary, as it is much more of a faceless crime and often goes undetected by its victims for quite some time. We often unknowingly make so much information about ourselves readily available that we become vulnerable to identity theft.
Identity theft is a growing problem, with many people taking advantage of how easy it is to access someone's personal information. In many cases, a person will be charged with identity theft, if they are accused of using someone else's name, credit card number or Social Security number to make purchases or obtain employment.
As we gear up for the holiday season, retailers are paying close attention to preventing theft. According to an annual study by the National Retail Federation, organized retail crime (ORC) is on the rise. Any New York resident who is caught taking items from a store without paying for them or engaging in fraudulent returns may be arrested and charged with theft. The specific charges and potential conviction penalties will depend on the value of the items stolen and the circumstances of the incident.
When many people think of theft crimes, they picture someone breaking into a store or home and taking items that do not belong to them. They may not think of all the intricacies of these alleged thefts. For example, three New Yorkers allegedly used counterfeit money to pay for multiple items from Home Depot. These people were spotted on surveillance camera footage for walking out of the store with nearly $1,500 worth of multiple drill kits.
When someone is accused of taking property that does not belong to them, they may be charged with theft. Many criminal theft charges stem from retail theft, which costs companies millions of dollars each year. A New York City man was charged with shoplifting after stealing baby formula from a Costco store.
With the technological advancements of recent years, identity theft has become one of the fastest growing crimes in society. A Brooklyn woman was recently arrested and charged with identity theft, forgery, receiving stolen property and theft, among other felony criminal counts. The woman was arrested after the alleged victim contacted the authorities. The alleged victim claimed that thieves had gotten her information and drained over $20,000 from her account through numerous bank transactions.
Fraud in the sale of stocks and private bonds is not uncommon, but before now, no one had been prosecuted for criminal securities fraud involving the sale of municipal bonds. That state of affairs will change dramatically when an elected official of the town of Ramapo, a suburb about 28 miles northwest of New York, will face trial on federal criminal charges involving the sale of municipal bonds.
When a person in New York thinks of gang crimes, he or she may envision drive-by shootings or massive drug busts. However, according to the New York Police Department (NYPD), more and more drug gangs are committing credit card theft. One NYPD official stated that in 2016, hundreds of apprehended gang members had stolen credit cards on them. The official stated that five-years ago, such crimes were rare.
Last week, this blog discussed the nuances of the crime of burglary. As one may recall, burglary involves knowingly entering a building with the intent to commit a crime therein. Recently, three men from New York were accused of committing that very crime in Nanuet, New York.
Hollywood likes to portray burglars as hardened criminals who are "breaking and entering" to do something extremely violent or nefarious. However, the crime of burglary in New York is actually a lot more subtle.