Civil Penalties for a Criminal Offense

On a regular basis I will have a client contact me after he or she has been charged with a theft offense that they just received a letter in the mail from the store’s lawyers. Whether it’s Wal-Mart, Target, Home Depot, or others, it’s not uncommon for their lawyers to send a theft penalty letter to the accused, demanding that they pay a civil fine to the store for their alleged acts. This is something outside of, and in addition to, any criminal fines or orders of restitution; even if the items are recovered in perfect condition!

I recently came across an article discussing just this topic and how some people are even being detained and accused of theft offenses by store personnel; not the police. And what’s worse, in some instances these allegations are being made based on racial profiling.

If you or a loved one has been accused of a theft offense this holiday season, contact Attorney Robert Botnick to discuss your rights and how to address these penalty demand letters.

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