Most common types of identity theft


Classification of thefts and their characteristics

The most common crime against property is theft – theft of someone else’s property. The danger of this crime is those who are used to stealing other people’s things, whose activities turn into a criminal organization that does not bring any socially useful actions, who commit organized thefts with an organized purpose, who join organized theft groups, members of a criminal group encroach on other people’s property.

The following types of theft are distinguished:

  • Depending on the owner and the object of the crime: theft of national, collective, or individual property (material values, personal property, vehicles, etc.);
  • Combination of theft with burglary of a residential or warehouse space (with the breaking of a lock or mechanism) depending on the method of committing and disguising the crime;
  • Thefts in buildings, depending on where the criminal plan is implemented – shops, warehouses, hotels, sanatoriums, cottages, apartments, etc. Thefts of significant value from industrial enterprises, agricultural enterprises, utility companies, and construction enterprises;
  • Theft of citizens’ property.

Like any crime, any theft is an event characterized by several unique features and distinctive features. However, all these and other types of theft have common characteristics that allow us to draw up a general description of the investigation and distinguish specific details of the crime. If you have been accused of theft, it is important to promptly seek qualified legal assistance from an attorney for theft, a specialist who is qualified in such cases and will be able to prove your innocence of the crime you are accused of.

Features of the investigation of theft include general information about specific features (factors of the crime), such as:

  • The environment in which the theft was planned and carried out.
  • The method of committing theft;
  • Scheme of committing theft;
  • The nature of the group of thieves, the reasons for their actions, etc.;
  • A person who suffered from a crime.

The possible actions of criminals who commit theft include:

  • The process of selecting objects to be robbed (apartments, houses, shops, containers, cars, etc.) is most often carried out by special intelligence or by direct or unconscious information;
  • Studying the key purpose of the theft and the conditions under which the thief must act. For this purpose, the place is visited under various pretexts (for example, under the guise of a doctor, insurance agent, locksmith, electrician, etc.). During such a “visit”, the criminal determines the location, sometimes creates the conditions for a criminal conspiracy (for example, the activation of a security alarm, damage to the telephone cable), the theft of the key from the front door is possible;
  • Choosing the most effective way to directly take possession of the property and preparing the necessary technical means to implement the criminal intent;
  • Choice of methods of concealment of thefts, such as: hiding or selling stolen goods;
  • Establish in advance with accomplices of the theft the degree of preparation, role, and involvement in the crime.

Features of concealing committed theft

There are also features of hiding crimes. Usually, at the scene of the crime, measures are taken to destroy, hide or falsify physical evidence (gloves, rubbing the hands with wax or degreasing solution, wide or women’s shoes, changing the appearance, changing the number plates of the car, face masks) so that the criminals cannot be identified. Information about the method of theft makes it possible to identify certain characteristics (gender, age, occupation, etc.) of the person who committed this crime. For example, thefts committed by teenagers are mainly carried out by different means. A typical method of theft for teenagers is “free entry” into the homes of relatives and friends. They can also use keys obtained from victims or trick them into stealing valuables from the victim’s homes. Information about the identity of the criminal occupies a special place in the forensic characteristics of theft. Criminals who engage in theft can be tentatively classified as:

  • Professional thieves whose main occupation is theft. As a rule, these people have already been convicted of similar crimes, in this sense, theft is one of the most persistent criminal types of their daily activities. They lead criminal groups and have specific knowledge of committing thefts;
  • Thieves steal things due to emergencies that have arisen in their lives (people who are left without property or proper protection due to various life circumstances, etc.). These people steal items (usually in small quantities) from hidden places and try to quickly leave the place of theft. If you have stolen something due to various difficult life circumstances, it is important to contact a criminal defense law firm in time to protect yourself and mitigate the punishment.

Forensic theft data indicate a certain change in the criminal environment. There is a clear rejuvenation of cases of burglary, the average age of which is 25 years (only a fifth of those convicted of burglary were older than 29). At the same time, middle-aged people (30-49 years old) are twice as often convicted of large-scale theft. About half of the robberies are attributed to members of various criminal groups and the appropriate technology for committing theft (identification of targets, intelligence gathering, distribution of functions of planning and execution, robbery) for planning, execution, and concealment of crimes.

It is appropriate to distinguish the criminal nature of theft of property. Relationships often play an important role in defining different situations. Forensic analysis of theft mainly collects information about the victims and their behavior. This allows us to conclude the details of the relationship with the criminal, and how this relationship arose. Because of this, information about the victim (the condition of the property where money or jewelry is kept, the length of time the victim has been away from home, etc.) is important for criminals to use when planning and carrying out a theft. Particular attention should be paid to the data on the behavior of the victims (reckless attitude to the protection of their apartment from intruders, lack of understanding and trust in outsiders, display of a wealthy life, systematic sales and publication of advertisements for the purchase of expensive or valuable items, large sums of money on one’s person, etc.).

The specifics of committing theft

Stealth of theft determines the correct choice of time of day for their implementation: 90% of thefts occur on weekdays from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and more than half of thefts occur in the summer. Thefts in commercial buildings, in warehouses – in the evening and at night, on holidays or weekends. A significant number of pickpocketing occurs in the mornings and evenings, which are busy times when shops, markets, and other busy areas of the city are at their most active. An important element of forensic evidence of theft is the knowledge of the subject of the crime. Therefore, home theft often involves money (especially cash), jewelry, antiques, personal computers, laptops, tablets, smartphones, expensive clothes, shoes, and other valuable household items. Pickpockets steal not only money but also jewelry from purses and briefcases. The object of theft can be a vehicle, motorcycle, moped, or various components or parts in disassembled parts (engines, wheels, etc.). When solving a specific crime, it is necessary to determine the purpose of the theft, in particular, the individual characteristics of the criminal, the circumstances of the crime, etc. This helps to take into account other factors, for example, the purpose of committing theft by criminals, and the purposefulness of their actions in choosing an object that causes them a significant interest in committing theft. It should be taken into account that thefts of cars, household appliances, and valuables are almost always committed by people who possess certain professional and technical knowledge and skills in committing thefts. The most useful source of information about the forensic nature of theft is information about how these crimes are committed. Theft of other people’s property has acquired an organized and professional character in recent years, including various preparatory actions for theft, direct possession, and embezzlement of material values, which is characterized by a qualified method of carrying out and concealing evidence of criminal actions to take possession of other people’s things or other people’s property.

Anything of monetary value can be stolen

There are different forms of kidnapping; theft differs from all other forms of embezzlement by the method of seizing such property – conspiracy. This type of kidnapping is considered secret if the thief believes that the victims are invisible to him or others. As a rule, theft is carried out in the absence of a person: the owner of the property, eyewitnesses, etc. (that is when no one sees). The theft of such property, if it is carried out in the presence of the victim or other persons, is also considered confidential if the criminal believes that no one sees his actions (people distance themselves and see the criminal). Kidnapping committed in the presence of the victim or other persons, but in a way that is not clear to them, is also considered confidential. (eg pickpocketing).

Concealed theft also occurs when it is carried out in the presence of the victim or other persons who, due to their physical or mental state, are not aware of the fact that their valuables have been illegally taken and cannot assess and correctly perceive the actions of the criminal. Theft of property is also considered confidential when a person steals property in the presence of other people who trust him for various reasons (family ties, friendship, etc.).

The crime of taking someone else’s property, similar to theft, is also distinguished: this is robbery. What is the difference between these terms? Theft is the secret theft of someone else’s property, robbery is the open theft of someone else’s property, that is, the theft of property without hiding, knowing that the victim or other people can see you. Robbery is an attack aimed at seizing someone else’s property with the use of force, which creates a threat to the life or health of the person attacked. Any theft is committed only with direct intent, i.e. the person was aware of the commission of illegal actions to acquire someone else’s property.

The assistance of a qualified theft lawyer

The most common crimes today are crimes related to encroachment on the property of citizens and other people’s property. Indeed: thieves can be found in stores, on the street, or in the office. In many cases, a person accused of a crime will need qualified legal assistance. In this case, you should seek the qualified services provided by experienced theft attorneys. They offer all kinds of legal and advocacy services. A theft lawyer will provide you with professional advice, defend your innocence and find mitigating circumstances in the case of theft.

Theft is the hidden theft of someone else’s property. Privacy, on the other hand, is defined by the fact that the criminal commits the crime without being seen or believed to be unseen by other people. Burglary is also considered illegal theft of property when the victims or other persons are intoxicated or asleep and do not realize that a crime has been committed against their property. A person who has reached the appropriate age and is aware of all his actions during the commission of the crime can be convicted of theft. In case of theft, a person may be held liable, both administratively and criminally. It all depends on the scale of the crime. In such cases, a lawyer is necessary, since he is the person who accurately characterizes the nature of the crime.

For example, in cases of petty theft, the accused person will be held administratively liable. If a larger theft is committed, then such a crime will be punished according to the current criminal law. In such a case, the accused person will need a lawyer, because liability in the form of a fine, arrest, or imprisonment is already provided for here. Liability depends on the severity, size of the crime, and the number of persons who committed the theft. To determine the nature of the crime, a theft lawyer must properly classify the act and study all the important details in detail to help his client as much as possible. In addition, there are situations when theft needs to be reclassified. Robbery is not disguised theft of property with possible use of force or threat of use of force. Therefore, such an act is punishable by imprisonment. However, each case is unique, and a theft attorney must understand how to build a defense for the accused party who is his client in the case. Therefore, if you have committed such a crime at least once in your life, the main thing is not to harm yourself and choose high-quality legal services. When you are wrongfully accused of theft that you did not commit, you must fight for justice and take your case to a theft attorney. If you are accused of theft, there is no need to panic and make hasty decisions, there is no need to enter into conflict with the victims or witnesses, there is no need to sign anything without carefully reviewing the documents, and there is no need to threaten the injured party. Contact a theft lawyer as soon as possible, it is this specialist who can effectively help the accused party.