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Criminal Code (R.S.C., 1985, c. C-46)

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Act current to 2021-09-11 and last amended on 2021-08-27. Previous Versions

PART IXOffences Against Rights of Property (continued)


Marginal note:Theft

  •  (1) Every one commits theft who fraudulently and without colour of right takes, or fraudulently and without colour of right converts to his use or to the use of another person, anything, whether animate or inanimate, with intent

    • (a) to deprive, temporarily or absolutely, the owner of it, or a person who has a special property or interest in it, of the thing or of his property or interest in it;

    • (b) to pledge it or deposit it as security;

    • (c) to part with it under a condition with respect to its return that the person who parts with it may be unable to perform; or

    • (d) to deal with it in such a manner that it cannot be restored in the condition in which it was at the time it was taken or converted.

  • Marginal note:Time when theft completed

    (2) A person commits theft when, with intent to steal anything, he moves it or causes it to move or to be moved, or begins to cause it to become movable.

  • Marginal note:Secrecy

    (3) A taking or conversion of anything may be fraudulent notwithstanding that it is effected without secrecy or attempt at concealment.

  • Marginal note:Purpose of taking

    (4) For the purposes of this Act, the question whether anything that is converted is taken for the purpose of conversion, or whether it is, at the time it is converted, in the lawful possession of the person who converts it is not material.

  • Marginal note:Wild living creature

    (5) For the purposes of this section, a person who has a wild living creature in captivity shall be deemed to have a special property or interest in it while it is in captivity and after it has escaped from captivity.

  • R.S., c. C-34, s. 283

Marginal note:Oysters

  •  (1) Where oysters and oyster brood are in oyster beds, layings or fisheries that are the property of any person and are sufficiently marked out or known as the property of that person, that person shall be deemed to have a special property or interest in them.

  • Marginal note:Oyster bed

    (2) An indictment is sufficient if it describes an oyster bed, laying or fishery by name or in any other way, without stating that it is situated in a particular territorial division.

  • R.S., c. C-34, s. 284

Marginal note:Theft by bailee of things under seizure

 Every one who is a bailee of anything that is under lawful seizure by a peace officer or public officer in the execution of the duties of his office, and who is obliged by law or agreement to produce and deliver it to that officer or to another person entitled thereto at a certain time and place, or on demand, steals it if he does not produce and deliver it in accordance with his obligation, but he does not steal it if his failure to produce and deliver it is not the result of a wilful act or omission by him.

  • R.S., c. C-34, s. 285

Marginal note:Agent pledging goods, when not theft

 A factor or an agent does not commit theft by pledging or giving a lien on goods or documents of title to goods that are entrusted to him for the purpose of sale or for any other purpose, if the pledge or lien is for an amount that does not exceed the sum of

  • (a) the amount due to him from his principal at the time the goods or documents are pledged or the lien is given; and

  • (b) the amount of any bill of exchange that he has accepted for or on account of his principal.

  • R.S., c. C-34, s. 286

Marginal note:Theft of telecommunication service

  •  (1) Every one commits theft who fraudulently, maliciously, or without colour of right,

    • (a) abstracts, consumes or uses electricity or gas or causes it to be wasted or diverted; or

    • (b) uses any telecommunication facility or obtains any telecommunication service.

  • (2) [Repealed, 2014, c. 31, s. 14]

  • R.S., 1985, c. C-46, s. 326
  • 2014, c. 31, s. 14

Marginal note:Possession of device to obtain use of telecommunication facility or service

  •  (1) Every person who, without lawful excuse, makes, possesses, sells, offers for sale, imports, obtains for use, distributes or makes available a device that is designed or adapted primarily to use a telecommunication facility or obtain a telecommunication service without payment of a lawful charge, knowing that the device has been used or is intended to be used for that purpose, is

    • (a) guilty of an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term of not more than two years; or

    • (b) guilty of an offence punishable on summary conviction.

  • Marginal note:Forfeiture

    (2) If a person is convicted of an offence under subsection (1) or paragraph 326(1)(b), in addition to any punishment that is imposed, any device in relation to which the offence was committed or the possession of which constituted the offence may be ordered forfeited to Her Majesty and may be disposed of as the Attorney General directs.

  • Marginal note:Limitation

    (3) No order for forfeiture is to be made in respect of telecommunication facilities or equipment by means of which an offence under subsection (1) is committed if they are owned by a person engaged in providing a telecommunication service to the public or form part of such a person’s telecommunication service or system and that person is not a party to the offence.

  • Marginal note:Definition of device

    (4) In this section, device includes

    • (a) a component of a device; and

    • (b) a computer program within the meaning of subsection 342.1(2).

  • R.S., 1985, c. C-46, s. 327
  • 2014, c. 31, s. 15
  • 2018, c. 29, s. 32

Marginal note:Theft by or from person having special property or interest

 A person may be convicted of theft notwithstanding that anything that is alleged to have been stolen was stolen

  • (a) by the owner of it from a person who has a special property or interest in it;

  • (b) by a person who has a special property or interest in it from the owner of it;

  • (c) by a lessee of it from his reversioner;

  • (d) by one of several joint owners, tenants in common or partners of or in it from the other persons who have an interest in it; or

  • (e) by the representatives of an organization from the organization.

  • R.S., 1985, c. C-46, s. 328
  • 2003, c. 21, s. 4

 [Repealed, 2000, c. 12, s. 94]

Marginal note:Theft by person required to account

  •  (1) Every one commits theft who, having received anything from any person on terms that require him to account for or pay it or the proceeds of it or a part of the proceeds to that person or another person, fraudulently fails to account for or pay it or the proceeds of it or the part of the proceeds of it accordingly.

  • Marginal note:Effect of entry in account

    (2) Where subsection (1) otherwise applies, but one of the terms is that the thing received or the proceeds or part of the proceeds of it shall be an item in a debtor and creditor account between the person who receives the thing and the person to whom he is to account for or to pay it, and that the latter shall rely only on the liability of the other as his debtor in respect thereof, a proper entry in that account of the thing received or the proceeds or part of the proceeds of it, as the case may be, is a sufficient accounting therefor, and no fraudulent conversion of the thing or the proceeds or part of the proceeds of it thereby accounted for shall be deemed to have taken place.

  • R.S., c. C-34, s. 290

Marginal note:Theft by person holding power of attorney

 Every one commits theft who, being entrusted, whether solely or jointly with another person, with a power of attorney for the sale, mortgage, pledge or other disposition of real or personal property, fraudulently sells, mortgages, pledges or otherwise disposes of the property or any part of it, or fraudulently converts the proceeds of a sale, mortgage, pledge or other disposition of the property, or any part of the proceeds, to a purpose other than that for which he was entrusted by the power of attorney.

  • R.S., c. C-34, s. 291
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