Post or express mail is an important part of our lives, so the state of Texas has implemented laws that punish others for stealing other’s mail. This is referred to as mail theft and has much harsher penalties than one may think. The lightest sentence you can receive is a class A misdemeanor and if the crime is enhanced, you could be stuck with felony charges.
If you or someone you know has been accused of stealing mail, then we recommend you secure legal representation before moving forward. The consequences associated with mail theft are nothing to laugh at and you could find yourself with a felony conviction for simply taking another’s person mail. To learn more about the crime and it’s penalties, it’s suggested you set up an appointment with an experienced attorney.
Defense Attorney for Mail Theft in Harris County, TX
Have you or someone you know been accused of stealing another person’s mail? If so, we recommend you gain legal counsel. If the recipient of the mail presses charges, then you could find yourself with a criminal case on your hands. For quality and experienced federal crimes legal representation, we suggest you go with Horak Law.
Matthew Horak has distinguished himself as a proficient and experienced attorney in the Harris County, Texas area. He understands what it takes to defend someone from any type of crime including larceny such as mail theft. Call (713) 225-8000 now to learn more about his practice and set up your first consultation free. Horak Law represents people throughout the greater The Woodlands area including Conroe and Magnolia.
Overview of Mail Theft in Texas
- What Does Texas Consider to be Mail Theft?
- Penalties for Stealing Another Person's Mail
- Statute of Limitations for Mail Theft
- Additional Resources
What Does Texas Consider to be Mail Theft?
The crime mail theft can be located under the Texas Penal Code Section 31.20. It states a person commits a crime if they intentionally appropriate mail from another’s mailbox or premises without their effective consent and with intent to deprive them of mail.
The term “mail” refers to any letter, postal card, package, bag or other sealed article that:
- Was delivered by a mail carrier or delivery service and wasn’t received; or
- Has been left to be collected for delivery by a common carrier or delivery service
Penalties for Stealing Another Person’s Mail in Texas
The penalties for mail theft rely on the facts of the case and how many addresses the defendant appropriated mail from. People who have appropriated fewer than 10 addresses will receive a class A misdemeanor, which is punishable by:
- Up to one year in jail; and
- A fine of up to $4,000
The crime is enhanced to a state jail felony if the mail was appropriate from at least 10, but less than 30 addresses. A state jail felony can result in the following:
- Up to 2 years in a state jail facility; and
- A fine of up to $10,000
The charges can be elevated even further if the mail appropriated from more than 30 addresses. Third-degree felonies have a maximum punishment of:
- Up to 10 years in prison; and
- A fine of up to $10,000
Statute of Limitations for Mail Theft in Texas
Every crime must follow a time limit known as the statute of limitations. Prosecutors only have a certain amount of time to file charges against you. If they pass the statute of limitations deadline, then they will be barred by the court from filing any charges. In Texas, the statute of limitations is decided by the offense level of the charge.
Since mail theft has multiple ways to sentence a defendant based on the circumstances, there are more than one statute of limitations that applies. If you are convicted of a class A misdemeanor mail theft charge, then your statute of limitations is two years. If you’re charged with a felony-level mail theft crime, it’s three years.
Consumer Protection – Visit the official website for the United States Postal Inspection Service to learn more about mail and package theft. Access the site to learn how to protect your mail, personal information and tips to avoid theives.
Texas Laws for Mail Theft – Visit the official website for the Texas Penal Code to learn more about mail theft and other larceny charges. Access the site to read the elements, penalties and learn other theft offenses that are related to it.
Mail Theft Lawyer in The Woodlands, Texas
If you or someone you know has been arrested for stealing mail, it’s time you gain legal representation to protect your freedom. Many would be surprised of how harsh the penalties are for mail theft. Because of this, it’s important you have the best representation secured.
We suggest you try Horak Law for an efficient, aggressive and tactful defense. Matthew Horak is an experienced attorney with years of practice under his belt. Contact him now at (713) 225-8000 to learn more about his practice and set up your first consultation. Horak Law represents people throughout the greater Texas area such as Fort Bend County, Liberty County, Harris County and Montgomery County.
This article was last updated on November 22, 2019.