Shoplifting

Adam Goodman Toronto Lawyer

Being charged with shoplifting can be a serious matter that can stain your permanent record

Let Adam Goodman help you. Adam Goodman practices criminal law in Greater Toronto Area and has the necessary experience in defending people who have been charged with a shoplilfting.

Adam has the know-how to be resourceful, aggressive & relentless in presenting the best possible case to defend your shoplifting charges.

Adam Goodman’s clients come first

Adam Goodman does not run a stuffy traditional criminal law firm. He regularly meets with clients at times that work for their busy schedules and he will happily arrange for an evening or weekend appointment.

Why it’s essential you hire an experienced shoplifting lawyer

Just because you’ve been charged with shoplifting, that does not mean you will be convicted. A lot shoplifting charges that go to courts in Canada will go unproven when individuals have proper legal representation.

An experienced criminal lawyer will know the ins and outs of handling a shoplifting case. Adam Goodman has the ‘know how’ and necessary experience to see if you are eligible to have your shoplifting charges diverted from the court system, which would result in withdrawal of any criminal charges.

What happens if you are convicted of a shoplifting offence?

It’s obvious to most people that theft is taking something that doesn’t belong to you without the permission of the owner of the property. Shoplifting is considered theft, but usually involves a theft from a retail store rather than a private citizen or other type of business.

Shoplifting may not be as serious as other thefts, but it still is an offence that can permanently stain your record. Often shoplifting was an impulsive poor decision or it is sometimes compulsive metal challenge for some individuals. Most people who have been caught shoplifting are not considered hard criminal and they are often very ashamed and embarrassed they made that decision. If it happened to you, you don’t need to be embarrassed. It happens to all kinds of people.

The good news is, the Crown Attorneys in Ontario generally treats this type of theft less seriously than other types of criminal charges. If you have been caught shoplifting for the first time, you may be able to avoid a criminal conviction without even going to trial. In cases where the Crown Attorney does not offer diversion and decides to continue with the prosecution, potential sentences will depend on the circumstances of the theft and offender and range from an absolute or conditional discharge to a period of time in custody.

Potential shoplifting defences:

  • Factual innocence – the item was not taken.
  • Colour of right – the person taking the item had the right to do so.
  • Lack of mens rea – although the item was taken there was no actual intention to do so (may occur in cases where a person forgets they are holding an item that does not belong to them).
  • Identity – the Crown Attorney must prove it was the person charged who actually committed the offence.

Shoplifting offence FAQs

How Can I Get My Shoplifting Charge Diverted?

The decision to offer diversion falls solely in the hands of the Crown Attorney. A major factor the Crown will consider whether one has been charged before. A large number of those charged with shoplifting-related offences have never been charged before; often they are people who made a poor decision and regret this choice. While it is still possible to be offered diversion if one has been charged in the past, it can serve as a barrier. Other factors include the value of the items taken and the circumstances of the offence.

There is no standard diversion program. In Toronto, those who enter the program will meet with a diversion worker who will set-up some type of program. This can include one or a combination of the following:

  • Charitable donation.
  • Community service hours.
  • Completion of a course about shoplifting.
  • Letter of apology.
  • Any other task deemed appropriate by the Crown or diversion worker.

Once the required tasks are complete, the Crown will withdraw or stay the charges. This means that there will be criminal record or finding of guilt. Once this is done, it is possible to make an application to the police force who made the arrest to have pictures and fingerprints destroyed.

The decision to enter diversion is an individual one. While diversion can be a simple way to move on quickly from being arrested and charged, there is no obligation to accept the Crown’s offer and enter the program. Some refuse the offer (particularly in cases where they must make an admission of wrongdoing and are factually innocent of the offence). Like any criminal offence, an individual charged has the absolute right to have a trial. For those who refuse (and those who don’t complete the requirements of the program and have the offer withdrawn), the case will proceed through the system in the same manner as other criminal charges.

What Happens If This Is Not Your First Shoplifting Charge?

It is not impossible for an individual who has previously been charged with shoplifting to be offered diversion. In many cases however the Crown Attorney will not be agreeable to a diversion program. In such a case the matter will proceed through the court system like any other criminal charge.

Do I need a lawyer for a shoplifting charge?

This is a common question. The process of assisting a client with diversion is usually not very difficult. This is not always the case. There may also be cases where diversion was not offered at the outset and a lawyer was able to demonstrate to the Crown Attorney why diversion is the best outcome. A lawyer also provides peace of mind.

How much does it cost to hire Adam Goodman for a shoplifting matter?

In most cases, a retainer (usually between $2000-4000) is required to begin working on your matter. Depending on the circumstance, Adam may consider working on a contingency or partial contingency basis. Adam’s law practice offers payment plans and also accepts various forms of payment including debit and credit cards.

What should you do next?

Remember it costs you nothing to pick up the phone to find out your rights. Contact one of Adam Goodman’s Toronto offices today for a free assessment of your shoplifting case and let him help lessen your stress and worries about your legal matter(s).