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legal eagle
legal eagle, Attorney
Category: German Law
Satisfied Customers: 15725
Experience:  20 years of experience in all kinds of law, especially employment law and family law.
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Sorry for my text, I hope you will find the time to read it.

Customer Question

Sorry for my long text, I hope you will find the time to read it.
On the 29th of April 2016 I got caught stealing two items in a Mall in Berlin. I bought some things for 25 € and put the stolen goods in my pocket. The amount of what I stole is about 17 €.
The store detective stopped me at the exit of the shop and brought me to his office, where I confessed what I have done and agreed to pay a 50 € fee.
I am an Italian cititzen and resident and I often spend some time in Germany for work and holidays, so I had no Anmeldung and the detective called the police to take note of what happened (he said if I were registered in Germany, this step was unnecessary and he could let me go).
The policemen came and asked the shop detective to explain what happened. Then they made me some questions, I confessed what I have done again and I expressed my full remorse for my actions. I asked them what was happening next, they told me I should go with them to the central for questioning and they will bring me to jail. They gave me some papers to fill in and sign. I couldn't know what the policemen and the shop detective talked about, as my german is extremely weak and their attempt to speak enaglish was not too helpful either. Nothing was mentioned in detail on the papers: I was charged with the infraction of art. 242 of german penal code. I was very scared and sorry, I signed the papers and checked some boxes: I checked the box that allows them to contact my embassy, I checked that I understood what the papers were about and I also checked that I am willing to give further explainations on what happened in case it's needed. Among the other tick boxes, two of them gave me the option to confess what I have done or to deny the accusations. I left both the boxes blank, as I thought that I was going with the policemen for questioning and it was maybe better to explain them what I have done in detail, rather than confessing with a tick box - I never thought of denying the theft!! There were also other boxes, but they were either to question the alleged crime, or to ask for a hearing with a judge, and I left them blank as well (the idea of going against the authorities makes no sense in my situation).
After a while, one of the policemen was quite helpful, she realized I was shocked, she checked what I wrote on the papers and she said it was fine. Out of the building, both of the policemen reassured me and told me there was no need to follow them, that what I have done is wrong and very stupid, but for this time I was free to go with no further consequences and absolutely nothing will happen to me. They even told me that if they bust me a second time, then something will happen for sure (I can tell you there won't be a second time).
Now I realize I might have made a mistake, as the full confession of my fault would have more likely ended any prosecution. Unfortunately, while I was signing the papers, I still thought I was going with the policemen for questioning, that's why I left the “confession box” blank. I spoke with some friends of mine and they told me that usually you receive those papers as a letter from the police, so you have the time to ask a lawyer what's best to do. Probably they gave me the papers immediately because I don't live in Germany.
Details on me: Italian citizen and resident, 28 years old, freelance architect, no crimial records.
Here are my questions:
1. Is there a chance that nothing happens as the police said?
2. Do you actually think that that blank box is a big mistake, or I am paranoid? In the end, I just decided not to say anything, I didn't deny my actions and I was willing to give further infromation. Furthermore, I confessed my actions to the police and I agreed to pay the 50 € fee to the shop, which may be a proof of confession anyway. I don't have a copy of the papers I signed, but I found a copy of the same papers on this website: http://www.justanswer.com/german-law/8lq0t-case-shoplifting-today-saturn-retailer-bought.html
3. Since I am Italian, will I have troubles with the italian justice before an official statement by the judge comes (in case there will be one)?
In case they will decide to investigate further, will there be a simple hearing or a trial?
4. Will a lawyer be needed?
5. Will they charge me with something that shows on any certificate, or as a first time offender, I can expect mild and a fine?
Your help is much appreciated, many thanks in advance.
Submitted: 4 months ago.
Category: German Law
Expert:  legal eagle replied 4 months ago.

Dear Customer,

as the items you took are of little value you stand a very good chance that charges will be dropped, if you have no previous convictions.

As you were caught anyway a confession would still be advisable

If charges are not dropped which is highley unlikely your fine will be so minimal that you still will not have any previous convictions.

You would get a punishment order, which gets valid if you do not contradict within a fortnight

You do t need a lawyer and it will not show anywhere

Expert:  legal eagle replied 4 months ago.

Any further questions?

Be my guest

If your question is answered a 2-5 rating would be rather appreciated

Expert:  legal eagle replied 4 months ago.

I hope I was able to help you. Should you have any further questions please be my guest. I shall try to answer them as soon as possible. If i have helped I would very much appreciate getting a positive rating. This is how I get credit for my work . Thank you so much, your business is very valuable to us.

Expert:  legal eagle replied 4 months ago.

Dear Customer,

getting some kind of credeit fpr my work would be very nice.

Any further qustions ?

If not I would ask to give me a positive ratimng

Thank you

Expert:  legal eagle replied 4 months ago.
I hope I was able to help you. Should you have any further questions please be my guest. I shall try to answer them as soon as possible. If i have helped I would very much appreciate getting a positive rating. This is how I get credit for my work . Thank you so much, your business is very valuable to us.

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