Shop lifting and impact on residency or Blue Card

17 posts in this topic

Hi there. - I was caught shoplifting a cheap bottle of alcohol (it was really stupid, and I didn’t need to), and I’m scared now of how this might affect my visa.  I’m currently in Germany on a Blue Card. Here are my questions.:

 

1) does shop lifting affect my ability to get a blue card renewed?

 

2) does shoplifting prevent me from getting residency (which I can do thru the blue card after a number of years? I’ve read that a serious crime could prevent one from getting residency, so does shop lifting count as serious?

 

3) I just received a letter from the police asking for more information / my statement (including economic conditions). What should i do?

 

At the time i was caught, I said it was a mistake and I just forgot about this one bottle. We paid for everything else. Should I just reiterate that it was a careless mistake on my part? Does saying I have a job make it harder to persecute my case?

 

4) if I do pay a fine for this, how long will it be in my criminal history?

 

thanks all.

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What you should do is reply to the Police letter.

What you hould have done is think about those questions before you stole the bottle.

 

Ahhh, you're in Australia so why ask these questions on a forum in Germany?

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1 hour ago, Malt-Teaser said:

Ahhh, you're in Australia so why ask these questions on a forum in Germany?

Because OP is in Germany on a blue card.  

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8 hours ago, Aegor said:

Hi there. - I was caught shoplifting a cheap bottle of alcohol (it was really stupid, and I didn’t need to), and I’m scared now of how this might affect my visa.  I’m currently in Germany on a Blue Card. Here are my questions.:

 

1) does shop lifting affect my ability to get a blue card renewed?

 

2) does shoplifting prevent me from getting residency (which I can do thru the blue card after a number of years? I’ve read that a serious crime could prevent one from getting residency, so does shop lifting count as serious?

 

3) I just received a letter from the police asking for more information / my statement (including economic conditions). What should i do?

 

At the time i was caught, I said it was a mistake and I just forgot about this one bottle. We paid for everything else. Should I just reiterate that it was a careless mistake on my part? Does saying I have a job make it harder to persecute my case?

 

4) if I do pay a fine for this, how long will it be in my criminal history?

 

thanks all.


OP, shoplifting is no serious crime, unless the bottle you stole was extremely expensive.  The police and state's prosecutor don't want to read your excuses.  Just offer them the facts.  You messed up.  Period.  Offering things (I highlighted above) would be viewed as a contradiction by the police and prosecutor.  Just facts.

This is akin to a traffic violation as it is minimal.  You will, most like, no be in court and hence no conviction, which is what ends up on a good conduct certificate.  

However, you will have a police record.  How this impacts your Blue Card, I cannot say.  When your card comes up for renewal, it will fall on the migration office to determine an extension.  They could choose no to due to this incident or could choose to overlook it. 

Ignoring the police request for more information would not be wise.  Answer it immediately.  If you choose to involve a lawyer, there would be a chance of going to court.  Give it a wee good think.
 

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Did you use some kind of physical violence or threats when detected stealing? If so that can turn shop lifting into a serious crime. Unless you were passive and compliant during the whole incident I would advise you to talk to a criminal lawyer. .

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I was super compliant. No issues at all. They just forced me to sign a form that I couldn’t read, and they couldn’t translate...

 

I was annoyed about this, and even asked what is this. But all they said was either 1) sign and leave or 2) police will be called and wait 4-5 hours 

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13 hours ago, katheliz said:

Because OP is in Germany on a blue card.  

 

Nah, you don't say.

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53 minutes ago, Aegor said:

They just forced me to sign a form that I couldn’t read

This might have been a mistake. Also, don't steal. Not cool.

 

Since there is a police letter involved, I suspect you signed some sort of confession. This is what I could find https://www.123recht.de/forum/strafrecht/Ladendiebstahl-Supermarkt-und-komischer-Brief-__f539674.html

 

Not really relevant but whatever: I once forgot to empty the bag that was the same bag that had my work PC that I sometimes would use for stuff I bought at the store. I never asked for the shopping receipt because the lady saw me everyday when I went there for my Feierabendbier. Different supermarket, different day, I had to wait an unusually long amount of time for a friend who was crashing at my place at the time to come over with another backpack for carrying groceries back home. The checkout lady must have seen me standing around aimlessly and from her perspective it must have looked suspicious. Come checkout time, she asked to look into my bag, and we find a liquid hand soap I bought the previous day, having said again no to the receipt question. I tried to explain that it was a mistake and if they wanted I would be glad to pay again. The manager came and I explained the same. She agreed to let me just pay for it again. Back then, I was furious. I guess I was lucky because no police were involved.

 

 

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6 minutes ago, generalmartok said:

Also, don't steal. Not cool.

 

WTF is that for advice.

 

Since when was it ever cool to steal?

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3 minutes ago, Sir Percy B said:

WTF is that for advice.

It's not. Sorry but it isn't a hungry individual stealing food to eat that we are talking about.

 

Anyway, I have no interest in arguing with you. Have a good evening.

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yeah a similar thing happened to me, I just filled my back pack and went to check out - I forgot to empty a small battery for my watch that I needed. On that occasion nobody asked to look in bag thou

 

On another occasion I went into a supermarket  started to put stuff into my bag, then a supermarket assistant or Manager came up to me  and said that it was not allowed to put stuff in my bag and that I must use the shopping trolley ... I did not understand at the time why - but know I can see the point. If you use the trolley, its much easier to see that its empty at the check out than a bag.

 

Cannot make my mind up from what the original OP said whether its straight steeling or an honest  mistake, and of course this would affect how I think about what has happened.

 

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11 hours ago, generalmartok said:

It's not. Sorry but it isn't a hungry individual stealing food to eat that we are talking about.

 

Anyway, I have no interest in arguing with you. Have a good evening.

 

I think Percy was making a joke about your use of the double negative.

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On 29.8.2019, 05:56:18, Malt-Teaser said:

What you should do is reply to the Police letter.

Most lawyers say you shouldn't say anything without a lawyer. ;)

 

In the end it depends a bit on the mood of the state attorney but for a first-time theft of an item with low value the case will usually just be closed with no conviction at all (§ 153 StPO). So Blue Card or even citizenship usually aren't a problem. Germany is very lenient towards criminals.

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Ooooh, is this now a shoplifting confession thread?

 

A couple months ago I accidentally stole a fancy expensive deodorant from an organic store. Initially I just went in quickly to grab a couple small specific things, so didn't take a basket. But as happens, I picked up a couple more items I realized we could use. I grabbed a bottle of juice or something, and since it was now too awkward to hold, I put the deo in my raincoat pocket so I wouldn't drop anything, then headed to the cashier. I checked out, got home, and as I was hanging up my jacket, noticed the extra weight and what I had done. Oooops... I never confessed to the store, which I go to often. Was too ashamed.

 

13 hours ago, Aegor said:

 

I was super compliant. No issues at all. They just forced me to sign a form that I couldn’t read, and they couldn’t translate...

 

I was annoyed about this, and even asked what is this. But all they said was either 1) sign and leave or 2) police will be called and wait 4-5 hours 

 

You should've written on it in English above where you sign your name "I cannot read German and have no idea what this says, but am being compelled to sign it anyway. Ta." + your autograph.

 

This is a misdemeanour. It won't affect your blue card. Now if you have a blue card, it means you have at least a certain minimum income, which is plenty enough to pay for those Strawberry Feigling or Underberg or whatever. Don't do it again. To think, in 19th century England you'd have been hanged or shipped off to the colonies!

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This post from the worst jokes thread came into my mind:

A British man is visiting Australia. The customs agent asks him, “Do you have a criminal record?” The British man replies, “I didn’t think you needed one to get into Australia anymore.”

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2 hours ago, alderhill said:

 

 

Don't do it again. To think, in 19th century England you'd have been hanged or shipped off to the colonies!

 

The joke is the OP has listed is his location asAustrialia, to which the UK sent large amounts of criminals - then they come back to Europe

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17 hours ago, Aegor said:

I was super compliant. No issues at all. They just forced me to sign a form that I couldn’t read, and they couldn’t translate...

 

I was annoyed about this, and even asked what is this. But all they said was either 1) sign and leave or 2) police will be called and wait 4-5 hours 

 

2 hours ago, alderhill said:

You should've written on it in English above where you sign your name "I cannot read German and have no idea what this says, but am being compelled to sign it anyway. Ta." + your autograph.

Love that idea.

 

They cannot force you to sign anything. Once you've given them your ID (name, date and place of birth, current address) and the items you took they have to let you go. They can only hold you longer if you can't or don't want to prove your ID or they have reason to believe you have hidden more items you aren't willing to show them. They can't search your clothes/bags against your will. Then police comes to verify your ID and search you.

The forms usually include:

1. list and worth of items you stole

2. statement of the employee who caught you

3. agreement to pay a fee to the store (usually 50 Euro)

4. acknowledgement of "Hausverbot", i.e. that you are forbidden from entering the store, often any store of that chain or even different chains that belong together (e.g. MediaMarkt+Saturn, REWE+Penny). Entering one of their stores again is misdemeanor punishable with a fine or up to 1 year prison (§ 123 StGB).

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