Retail Fraud Theft

Grand Rapids Retail Fraud Lawyer

In Michigan, retail fraud is the official term for theft through shoplifting. Any type of theft, no matter how small, is a charge you should take seriously. These are considered crimes of “moral turpitude,” which is another phrase for dishonesty. 

A conviction of a theft crime will become part of your criminal record which can have repercussions long into the future. Such a conviction can prevent you from getting a job, procuring loans, renting an apartment, and even affect your ability to get accepted into colleges and universities. 

Even if you were wrongfully accused or avoid jail time entirely, this mark on your criminal record can haunt you for the rest of your life.

At Ryan Maesen, PLC, we have a strong track record of achieving positive results for those accused of theft and other crimes in the counties of Kent, Allegan, and Ottawa. We understand what may be at stake for you when accused of such offenses and the important role we can play in protecting your rights and fighting for your freedom and future. 

You should never face criminal charges alone or with inexperienced or less than fully-focused representation. Putting our 15 years of criminal defense experience and committed effort on your side can increase your chances of legal success.

Take action for your future by discussing your case in a free initial consultation with our Grand Rapids retail fraud and theft attorney. Contact us online or at (616) 201-3327

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Retail Fraud & Theft Charges in Michigan

In Michigan, retail fraud is charged in three degrees as follows:

  • Third-degree. A first-offense misdemeanor charge when the dollar amount of goods stolen is under $200. It carries up to 93 days in jail and/or a fine of up to $500 or three times the value of what was stolen, whichever is greater. 
  • Second-degree. A second-offense misdemeanor charge when the dollar value of the goods ranges between $200 and $1,000. It carries up to a year in jail and/or a $2,000 fine or three times the value of the merchandise stolen, whichever is greater.
  • First-degree. A first-offense when the dollar value exceeds $1,000 or when the offense is a third or subsequent offense. This is charged as a felony carrying a potential prison term of up to five years and/or a fine of up to $10,000 or three times the value of the stolen goods, whichever is greater.

The severity of the consequences you will face when charged with any type of theft will be based on the value of the goods, funds, or services stolen or the property damage incurred during the theft. First-offense misdemeanor or felony theft charges, if not set for trial, can often result in some form of probation in lieu of jail time. Many of these cases can lead to non-conviction deferred adjudication. This means that proceedings are deferred until you complete your probation and your case can ultimately be dismissed. Under certain circumstances, the charge can be removed from your criminal record through non-disclosure. 

At Ryan Maesen, PLC we also defend clients charged with other types of theft or property crimes, including robbery, burglary, vandalism, white collar crimes, embezzlement, fraud, car theft, trespassing, and juvenile crimes. 

Don’t take chances with your future when accused of retail fraud or other types of theft. Our experienced and dedicated criminal trial lawyer knows how to put together legal strategies that can benefit you. Call us at (616) 201-3327 to schedule a free consultation to learn more.

  • “I needed a criminal attorney and I needed one fast. I only had two weeks until my first court appearance when I started my search. Mr. Maesen's name was one of several that came up on my search and I promptly called.” - Kelly
  • “Ryan is a knowledgeable, professional general law practice attorney. I highly recommend him to anyone in need of an attorney, particularly for real estate matters and criminal defense.” - Sharon
  • “Was facing a 25 to life CSC case. We tried it and we won. He has great trial skills and did a knockout job cross-examining my accuser.” - Richard

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