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Fraudulent Destruction, Removal, or Concealment of Writing

The Fraudulent Destruction, Removal, or Concealment of Writing crime in the state of Texas gives police the right to arrest you if they believe you destroyed or otherwise impaired certain kinds of documents, currency or other types of “writings.” Learn more detailed information about the Fraudulent Destruction, Removal, or Concealment of Writing offense below.

Have you been charged with Fraudulent Destruction, Removal, or Concealment of Writing? Call criminal lawyer Paul Saputo at (888) 239-9305.

Fraudulent Destruction, Removal, or Concealment of Writing is classified in the Texas Penal Code under Title 7 “Offenses Against Property,” Chapter 32 “Fraud.”

What is the law in Texas about Fraudulent Destruction, Removal, or Concealment of Writing?

The offense is described in Section 32.47 of the Texas Penal Code.

(a) A person commits an offense if, with intent to defraud or harm another, he destroys, removes, conceals, alters, substitutes, or otherwise impairs the verity, legibility, or availability of a writing, other than a governmental record.

Writings are defined in the statute to include (the word “include” implies that this is not an exhaustive list):1

(1) printing or any other method of recording information;

(2) money, coins, tokens, stamps, seals, credit cards, badges, trademarks;

(3) symbols of value, right, privilege, or identification; and

(4) universal product codes, labels, price tags, or markings on goods.

How can I be charged with Fraudulent Destruction, Removal, or Concealment of Writing?

You can be charged with Fraudulent Destruction, Removal, or Concealment of Writing if the state’s attorneys believe that each of the elements of 32.47(a) as described in the section above have been met.

What is the punishment for Fraudulent Destruction, Removal, or Concealment of Writing?

A conviction for Fraudulent Destruction, Removal, or Concealment of Writing is punished by default as a Class A misdemeanor,2 with a maximum possible fine under Texas state law of up to $4,000 and jail time of up to one year.

however, if the writing is a will, deed, or mortgage, then a conviction for Fraudulent Destruction, Removal, or Concealment of Writing is punished as a State Jail Felony,3 with a maximum possible fine under Texas state law of up to $10,000 and jail time of up to two years. Learn about the differences between grades of felonies and misdemeanors


Legal References:

1Texas Penal Code Section 32.47(b)

2Texas Penal Code Section 32.47(c)

3Texas Penal Code Section 32.47(d)

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