The field of theft offenses displays a variety as rich as the imagination of those who seek dishonest gain. There are crimes committed in cashing bad checks, misusing credit cards, eating at a restaurant without paying, joyriding in another person's car, appropriating someone else's electricity -- the list goes on and on. In this book we could not canvass all of these crimes of dishonest acquisition even if we were so inclined. Our objective will be to elicit the basic structure of theft by focussing on three types of crime that have crystallized in all Western legal systems. The traditional pattern in France, Germany and the Soviet Union as well as Anglo-American jurisdictions is to recognize a crime of larceny committed by taking the goods of another, a crime of embezzlement committed by improperly keeping goods entrusted to the actor, and a crime of fraud or false pretenses, committed by fraudulently inducing another to part with his property.
In general terms, we could identify the voluntary participation of the victim as the source of the distinctions among these three