Larceny by False Pretenses

Larceny by false pretenses is a crime under the larceny statute, Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 266 Section 30. This is a type of larceny that involves obtaining the property of another person by knowingly making false representations with the intent that another will rely on those representations. There are five elements to the offense of larceny by false pretenses, and each of them must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt before a defendant can be convicted of this crime. Firstly, the prosecutor is required to prove that the defendant made a false statement of fact. Secondly, it must be proven that when the defendant made the statement, he or she knew or believed that it was false. Next, the prosecutor has to prove that the defendant intended that the person to whom the statement was made would rely on it. Fourth, it must be established that the defendant did, in fact, rely on the statement. Finally, the prosecutor will have to prove that the other person parted with property as a result of the defendant’s actions. The statements must relate to some fact or an assertion of knowledge. Something that is purely an opinion or belief cannot be a false representation. However, actions that are expressive can be misrepresentations in certain circumstances.

Obtaining property by false pretenses was a common law crime separate from larceny, but the Massachusetts statute has combined false pretenses, larceny, and embezzlement under a single larceny umbrella. The purpose of grouping the distinct crimes together was to make things easier for the prosecution, which previously used to lose theft crimes cases by alleging the improper crime.

Massachusetts Theft Crimes Attorney

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Law Office of Robert J. Wheeler, Jr. (617) 973 5858

Call the Law Office of Robert J. Wheeler, Jr. for a free phone consultation at (617) 973 5858 or send Attorney Wheeler an e-mail through his website. You can reach his office 24 hours a day and 7 days a week.