Theft of Services
Theft of Services
The Blanch Law Firm offers vigorous, proactive criminal defense against Theft of Services charges.
Because Theft of Services is a misdemeanor, not a felony, a less serious offense. As a result, if taken up early enough in the criminal justice process, our defense attorneys can often manage to get charges dropped. If not, our attorneys’ plea-bargaining skills come into play, producing the best possible outcome for our client. And if a Theft of Services case goes to trial, our attorneys’ superb courtroom skills have resulted in an unprecedented number of dismissals of all charges in Theft of Services and other theft offenses.
Experienced Defense Based on a Thorough Analysis of Facts
Our attorney–formers prosecutors and big-firm attorneys–know all the “tricks of the trade” because they have experience working both sides of the criminal litigation bar in Theft of Services cases.
Simply put, a Theft of Services offense occurs when a person attempts to avoid payment for services rendered. However, according to Penal Law Article 165.15, Theft of Services has many different aspects, including obtaining but not paying for a service:
■Through use of a credit card or debit card that the user knows to be stolen;
■At a restaurant, hotel, motel, lodging and/or food service establishment but avoiding or refusing to pay;
■Via railroad, subway, bus, taxi, or any other public transportation but unjustifiably refusing to pay, or by tampering with any device established for entering the system;
■By means of any telecommunications or cable television service, or any electrical, gas, water, or telephone system without making payment therefor, or tampering with any provider device to avoid payment for utilities rendered thereby;
■With intent to avoid payment by himself or for another person of any lawful expense related to telephone usage;
■By making use of any service that is measured by a meter, or by preventing the meter from operating without the provider’s consent, so that the tampering results in nonpayment for such utilities;
■By diverting gas, steam, or electricity service away from a meter so that charges are not registered or tampering with equipment designed to supply such utilities;
■Entitling entry to any theater, sports or concert hall or sports related facilities without making payment;
■Permitting computer services, including Internet access, and seeking to avoid payment for their use.
Depending on the amount of money involved in a Theft of Services charge, the offense can rise in severity from a Class A Misdemeanor to a Class E Felony. And if a person who was previously convicted on a Theft of Services charge is convicted of a second Theft of Services offense within five years of the predicate, the result will be indictment on a felony charge.
Seasoned, Aggressive Defense for Theft of Services Charges
The Blanch Law Firm’s reputation has been built on our attorneys’ skills in providing defendants with a reality check–a knowledgeable, objective perspective on the likely outcome if and when a Theft of Services case goes to trial. This perspective is crucial in helping the client decide whether to accept the prosecution’s offer of a plea bargain. Because of their extensive experience, our attorneys are thoroughly familiar with legal precedent in Theft of Services cases, and know how to apply it in ways that a self-represented individual could not. For example, an investigation into Theft of Services might be based on an “unreasonable search and seizure,” but knowing what that means requires familiarity with a vast array of state and federal appellate court opinions.
In addition, our attorneys have successfully applied their knowledge of government authorities and court procedures to Theft of Services cases. For instance, in conducting a Theft of Services defense, our attorneys know which prosecutor has actual authority to settle a case, or which legal arguments are likely to appeal to the various judges appointed to bench–things that only a daily practitioner in the local criminal courts could possibly know.
If you’ve been charged with Theft of Services, don’t wait to obtain experienced criminal defense. To discuss your legal options in a free consultation, Contact The Blanch Law Firm by calling 646-797-4820.