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When facing any sort of federal larceny charge in Michigan, the consequences could be severe. Without the help of a dedicated attorney help, you could end up serving time in a federal prison, being required to pay restitution as well as substantial fines, being on probation for several years, and having a permanent criminal record. Contact a Michigan federal larceny lawyer to learn about different legal options and how they may impact your case.Federal Larceny Charges
Most larceny cases involve allegations that the defendant violated a state law and are accordingly prosecuted in state court. Federal larceny charges, on the other hand, apply to crimes that allegedly involved activities in more than one state, involved federal assets, or took place on federal property. These types of cases are brought in the applicable U.S. District Court. In Michigan, there are two such courts: one in the Eastern District and one in the Western District.
Under federal law, the crime of larceny encompasses the unauthorized taking or withholding of something of value from its rightful owner with the intent of never returning it. When a person accused of such an offense only intended to temporarily take or withhold the item, they might be charged with wrongful appropriation rather than larceny.
Federal law differentiates more than one hundred types of larceny. Although many of these same acts would also constitute a violation of Michigan statutes, others are unique to the federal criminal justice system. Some examples of actions that can be prosecuted under federal larceny laws include:
- Theft by deception
- Theft by fraud
- Theft by misrepresentation
- Theft by taking
The types of defenses that can be raised in a federal felony case generally depend on the specific facts and circumstances regarding the alleged illegal act. In this regard, however, some of the most commonly invoked defenses are as follows:
- Lack Of Intent
- Claim Of Ownership
- Abandoned Property
Lack of intent can be used as a valid legal defense if the alleged perpetrator can prove that they did not mean to take the property in question or that they planned to return the property to its rightful owner at some point in time.
In some cases, a person could claim that they mistakenly took the item of value. Someone who can demonstrate that they did not intend to take anything and that the incident occurred as the result of a simple mistake could also have a credible defense. For more information, get in touch with a Michigan federal larceny lawyer.Claim of Ownership or Abandoned Property
When a person can demonstrate that they have a legitimate claim of ownership on an item or property, they could potentially avoid a conviction for federal larceny. However, they must have sufficient evidence to support this claim.
Additionally, someone could show that the rightful owner previously abandoned the property in question. When property is abandoned by its rightful owner, another person could be led to believe that they have forfeited their right to it.Incapacitation and Entrapment
To utilize the defense of incapacitation, a defendant must typically be able to prove that they were intoxicated—or otherwise mentally incapacitated—at the time they allegedly committed the larceny. Another potential defense is entrapment, which centers around an argument that the defendant was coerced or induced into committing the alleged act by a governmental agent.How A Michigan Federal Larceny Attorney Could Help
Receiving a federal larceny charge can be extremely overwhelming. Consulting a criminal defense attorney could help prepare you for upcoming court proceedings. Contact a Michigan federal larceny lawyer who is familiar with these types of charges and the rules that apply to federal criminal cases. This may help better ensure that your legal rights are protected and could help identify effective courses of action.