How is Larceny Defined by the Military?

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How one can steal from another person is limited only by their imagination. How a theft can be prosecuted by the military is more limited. The Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) has a couple of provisions that are used for courts martial when these crimes are involved.

Under Article 121 larceny is defined as wrongfully taking, obtaining or withholding from the possession of the owner, or of any other person, any money, personal property, or article of value of any kind with the intent to permanently deprive or defraud another of the use and benefit of property, or appropriate it to for his own use or the use of anyone other than the owner and steals that property, is guilty of larceny. If a person does the same, but the intent is only to do so temporarily, the person is guilty of wrongful appropriation.

Examples of these types of cases (that went to an appeal) include,

  • Purchasing about $20,000 worth of personal goods using a General Purchase Card which was supposed to be used to buy medical supplies.
  • A service member, stationed at an army base, got a divorce. Prior to that divorce he received Basic Allowance for Housing at the “with dependent” rate based on the fact he was married. He was obligated to inform the Army of his divorce, and if he did he would’ve lost the allowance. He failed to do so and for more than two years collected benefits (worth $30,623.27 ) he was not entitled to receive.
  • Stealing a duffel bag filled with personal items and military supplies.
  • Stealing contact lenses belonging to others.

As you can see these cases involve potential theft of items great and small. Even if the charge involves an item that does not have great value, the repercussions of a conviction could impact your career and retirement benefits. If you or a loved one are facing a court martial due to alleged larceny or another charge involving possible theft, the experienced court martial defense attorneys at Aviso Law LLC can help you understand the process and fight the charges. The firm represents those in the Denver and Colorado Springs areas as well as service members nationwide. Call (719)247-3111 to schedule your free consultation.

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