Theft Offenses & The Texas Legal System

Understanding Texas Law & Theft Cases

The Texas Penal code statute includes almost all methods of stealing, transferring or possessing another person’s property without their consent.

The penal code states, a person commits theft when they appropriate property with intent to deprive the owner of the property without effective consent, knowing it was stolen or believing it was stolen.

There exist several industries or items that have been prone to theft and the theft statute addresses these areas and imposes requirements on persons who either deal or work with these items. These areas that are regulated by the penal theft code include persons, buying used cars, pawnshops, and restricted use pesticide.

If you’re facing criminal charges in connection with a theft offense in Brazoria County or Angleton, TX, don’t hesitate to contact Defense Lawyer Tad Nelson for legal representation.

Texas Law & Used Cars

The first requirements are imposed upon a person that purchases a used car. The penal code requires a person who buys a used car to take certain actions, and if you acquire a used car without taking these actions if the used car that you have purchased is reported stolen, then you will be held criminally liable. The penal code states a person who buys a used car without a title they should report to the Texas Department of Transportation and if the person does not take steps to report that they didn’t receive a title from the seller and or doesn’t file with the county tax assessor not later than the 20th day after the sale, the registration, license receipt and title or evidence of the title then that person is presumed to have known it was stolen.

Texas Laws & Pawn Shops

According to the penal code, a pawn shop must take certain action if they don’t take specific steps and they end up in possession of stolen property the criminal code presumes to have known it was stolen. The criminal code states that if a pawnshop or a loaner cash advance business pays for a loan more than $25 against an item and doesn’t record the name, address, description or identification of the seller and record a complete description of the property including the serial number and obtained a signed warranty of the right to possess the property then they are presumed to have known it was stolen.

The penal code on the restricted use pesticide.

Certain agricultural chemicals may be harmful, and they may be used to create powerful improvised explosive devices or be used to manufacture illegal substances. The penal code states if a person acquires a controlled use pesticide or one that has been limited by the states for use from a source other than a licensed retailer and they do not record the name, address and physical description of the seller or the amount and type of substance and or obtain a signed warranty of the right to possess the property, then they are presumed to have known it was stolen.

In Texas, theft is primarily graded by the number of losses incurred though there are other specifications which include theft of livestock, firearms, and metals.

The Relationship Between Law Firms & Private Eyes

The Need for Private Detectives

Law firms routinely use private detectives in many capacities. Some examples of cases where investigators might be utilized by attorneys include divorce, corporate espionage, personal injury, worker’s compensation, and accident-related issues.

Hiring a Private Investigator

In these cases, a law firm retains a PI to help them gather information and do their “leg work.” The investigator will likely be tasked with following and observing a person(s) of interest. They would research their background, see who they interact with, where they go, and document their actions.

Evidence Investigation

Generally speaking, law firms employ investigators to gather evidence for them and perform the tasks attorneys do not have the time and/or training to do themselves. The length of time a PI follows and observes a subject can vary greatly, depending on the type of case and/or amount of evidence desired.

Evidence Matters

In many cases, the information gathered by these professionals may make or break a case for the law firm, especially if the case involves corporate matters or significant personal injury issues. Depending on what evidence the private detective gathers, it could result in a case being dismissed or a multimillion dollar settlement.

Corporate Spying

A prime example of a law firm using a Private Investigator might involve a case of corporate espionage. Case in point, a pharmaceutical company suspects they have a mole, who works for one of their competitors, within their ranks. The company is close to applying for FDA approval and wants to rush their product to market. However, there are rumors the company’s chief rival is working a similar drug and they suspect a mole might be relaying vital information to the competition that could enable the rival company to debut their drug on ahead of schedule.

Spy Vs. Spy

In this instance, a private detective like J.J. Gradoni could be retained by a law firm to determine if there is, in fact, a mole within the company. Then, they would also identify the mole as well as observe and document their actions. This information would be passed along to the law firm and/or client for their purposes.