ProZ.com global directory of translation services
 The translation workplace
Ideas
KudoZ home » English » Law/Patents

larceny vs theft

English translation: larceny is more comprehensive than theft

Login or register (free and only takes a few minutes) to participate in this question.

You will also have access to many other tools and opportunities designed for those who have language-related jobs
(or are passionate about them). Participation is free and the site has a strict confidentiality policy.
GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
English term or phrase:larceny vs theft
English translation:larceny is more comprehensive than theft
Entered by: chopra_2002
Options:
- Contribute to this entry
- Include in personal glossary

02:18 Jan 31, 2004
English to English translations [PRO]
Law/Patents
English term or phrase: larceny vs theft
What is the difference between larceny and theft please?
chopra_2002
India
Local time: 03:06
larceny is more comprehensive than theft
Explanation:
Good luck langclinic
Elena

Cambridge:

theft
noun [C or U]
(the act of) dishonestly taking something which belongs to someone else and keeping it:


larceny
noun [C or U] LEGAL
stealing, especially (in the US) the crime of taking something that does not belong to you, without getting illegally into a building to do so


WHAT IS LARCENY?
Larceny is the "taking and carrying away of tangible personal property of another by trespass with intent to permanently (or for an unreasonable time) deprive the person of his interest in the property". Larceny must involve personal property, and it must be capable of being possessed, and carried away. Thus, real estate, services and other intangibles cannot be objects of larceny.

The commission of larceny requires that someone else’s property actually be taken away, and the intent to take it, without paying for or returning it, must also be present. Both elements are needed by definition for larceny to occur.

Larceny - An old English criminal and common law offence covering the unlawful or fraudulent removal of another's property without the owner's consent. The offence of theft now covers most cases of larceny. But **larceny is wider than theft as it includes the taking of property of another person by whatever means (by theft, overtly , by fraud, by trickery, etc.)** if an intent exists to convert that property to one's own use against the wishes of the owner.


--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 20 mins (2004-01-31 02:38:25 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

::::::::::::::: When I wrote \"comprehensive\" in the Answer I was referring only to the fact described in the explanation of \"larceny\", i.e., that it is \"wider than theft\", because it \"it includes the taking of property of another person by whatever means (by theft, overtly , by fraud, by trickery, etc.)\". This condition is absent in the concept of \"theft\".

Legally speaking, however, larceny is a kind of theft; thus theft is the encompassing concept.

HTH :-)
Elena
Selected response from:

xxxElena Sgarbo
Grading comment
Thanks to all of you!
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer



Summary of answers provided
5 +3larceny is more comprehensive than theftxxxElena Sgarbo
5same BUT larceny no longer exists in English lawhookmv
5SynonimsxxxAlex Zelkind
4 +1The same thing - but theft is broader
Kim Metzger
4see explanation belowKardi Kho


  

Answers


6 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +1
The same thing - but theft is broader


Explanation:
According to my legal dictionary, larceny is "the crime of wrongfully taking possession of personal property from another with intent to convert it to one's own use. Note: the term 'larceny' has been abandoned in many modern criminal codes in favor of the broader concept of theft.
Theft: a broad term for crimes involving taking or keeping of money or property of another. It typically includes larceny, false pretenses, extortion, embezzlement, but not robbery or burglary.


    Dictionary of the Law - Random House
Kim Metzger
Mexico
Local time: 16:36
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in pair: 2249

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Asghar Bhatti: its just juglary of words.
3 hrs
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

8 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5 peer agreement (net): +3
larceny is more comprehensive than theft


Explanation:
Good luck langclinic
Elena

Cambridge:

theft
noun [C or U]
(the act of) dishonestly taking something which belongs to someone else and keeping it:


larceny
noun [C or U] LEGAL
stealing, especially (in the US) the crime of taking something that does not belong to you, without getting illegally into a building to do so


WHAT IS LARCENY?
Larceny is the "taking and carrying away of tangible personal property of another by trespass with intent to permanently (or for an unreasonable time) deprive the person of his interest in the property". Larceny must involve personal property, and it must be capable of being possessed, and carried away. Thus, real estate, services and other intangibles cannot be objects of larceny.

The commission of larceny requires that someone else’s property actually be taken away, and the intent to take it, without paying for or returning it, must also be present. Both elements are needed by definition for larceny to occur.

Larceny - An old English criminal and common law offence covering the unlawful or fraudulent removal of another's property without the owner's consent. The offence of theft now covers most cases of larceny. But **larceny is wider than theft as it includes the taking of property of another person by whatever means (by theft, overtly , by fraud, by trickery, etc.)** if an intent exists to convert that property to one's own use against the wishes of the owner.


--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 20 mins (2004-01-31 02:38:25 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

::::::::::::::: When I wrote \"comprehensive\" in the Answer I was referring only to the fact described in the explanation of \"larceny\", i.e., that it is \"wider than theft\", because it \"it includes the taking of property of another person by whatever means (by theft, overtly , by fraud, by trickery, etc.)\". This condition is absent in the concept of \"theft\".

Legally speaking, however, larceny is a kind of theft; thus theft is the encompassing concept.

HTH :-)
Elena


    Reference: http://www.lawinfo.com/lawdictionary/dict-l.htm
xxxElena Sgarbo
Native speaker of: Native in SpanishSpanish
PRO pts in pair: 294
Grading comment
Thanks to all of you!

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  cheungmo: Theft involves felony while larceny does not necessarily involve felony. What constitutes felony? The law of the jurisdiction.
1 hr
  -> I think you're absolutely right. Why don't you post your comment as an aswer? Thank for the agree!

agree  chica nueva: A difference in usage also? larceny and felony are not used in BrE as far as I know.
1 hr
  -> Thanks for the info & the agree, lai'an

agree  Patricia Baldwin: Perfect! Happy Weekend !!!!
1 day12 hrs
  -> Patricia, muchas gracias x 2! Igualmente
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

2 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5
Synonims


Explanation:
There is no difference between them. In some states theft is called larceny, while in others larceny is called theft.

xxxAlex Zelkind
Native speaker of: Native in RussianRussian
PRO pts in pair: 18
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

9 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
see explanation below


Explanation:
They are synonymous. However, 'theft' is the more generic term as robbery, burglary and embezzlement are all commonly thought of as theft.

Here is what the Law.com dictionary says about 'theft' and 'larceny':

Theft
n. the generic term for all crimes in which a person intentionally and fraudulently takes personal property of another without permission or consent and with the intent to convert it to the taker's use (including potential sale). In many states, if the value of the property taken is low (for example, less than $500) the crime is "petty theft," but it is "grand theft" for larger amounts, designated misdemeanor or felony, respectively. Theft is synonymous with "larceny." Although robbery (taking by force), burglary (taken by entering unlawfully) and embezzlement (stealing from an employer) are all commonly thought of as theft, they are distinguished by the means and methods used and are separately designated as those types of crimes in criminal charges and statutory punishments.

Larceny
n. the crime of taking the goods of another person without permission (usually secretly), with the intent of keeping them. It is one form of theft. Some states differentiate between grand larceny and petty larceny based on the value of the stolen goods. Grand larceny is a felony with a state prison sentence as a punishment and petty larceny is usually limited to county jail time.

HTH


    Reference: http://www.law.com
Kardi Kho
Indonesia
Local time: 04:36
Native speaker of: Native in IndonesianIndonesian
PRO pts in pair: 35
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

13 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 5/5
same BUT larceny no longer exists in English law


Explanation:
Larceny: crime of stealing goods which belong to another person. "He was convicted of larceny". "Petty larceny" or "grand larceny" = "minor theft" or grand/very large thefts".

COMMENT: Larceny no longer exists in English law, having been replaced by the crime of theft.

In other words, you cannot be convicted of larceny.

Source: Norstedt Eng/Swe Dictionary of Law

hookmv
Sweden
Local time: 23:36
Native speaker of: Native in SwedishSwedish
PRO pts in pair: 35

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
neutral  Eva Olsson: In my Norstedt it says that grand larceny and petty larceny are American terms. Also, larceny is described as a law term in both Norstedt and Random House, while theft is not.
2 days58 mins
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)




Return to KudoZ list


KudoZ™ translation help
The KudoZ network provides a framework for translators and others to assist each other with translations or explanations of terms and short phrases.



See also: