Definition of theft in English:



mass noun
  • The action or crime of stealing.

    ‘he was convicted of theft’
    count noun ‘the latest theft happened at a garage’
    • ‘The crimes are the latest in a series of thefts to have taken place around the area.’
    • ‘This is necessary where two or more persons participate in the original theft.’
    • ‘These offenders have recently been found guilty of a number of burglaries and car thefts.’
    • ‘Most mobiles stolen here disappear as a result of thefts from bags or car seats rather than muggings.’
    • ‘Staff said they believed that some of the thefts from the museum were an inside job.’
    • ‘Residents have called police to report drug activity, prostitution, thefts and assaults.’
    • ‘Other crimes such as burglaries and thefts from cars had decreased, he added.’
    • ‘Police say most of the crimes have involved thefts of push bikes or from cars.’
    • ‘In the last part of your article you liken the act of music piracy to the theft of physical property.’
    • ‘Police are calling for motorists to be extra vigilant following a spate of car thefts and break-ins.’
    • ‘The security laws ban treason, sedition, subversion and the theft of state secrets.’
    • ‘Scene of crime officers were alerted to the string of thefts when the crimes came to light on Monday.’
    • ‘But despite the recent spate of thefts, there has been some good news on crime levels.’
    • ‘Police are again urging householders to secure their property after a theft from a house in Hill Lane.’
    • ‘Police are appealing for information following the theft of a large sum of money from a property in Firth.’
    • ‘Along with stamping out burglaries and thefts, a heavy emphasis is put on personal safety.’
    • ‘They included four commercial burglaries, two car thefts and two other thefts.’
    • ‘Thus far there have been no charges in relation to the break-ins or thefts this year.’
    • ‘The drastic move follows a series of thefts and muggings at the church.’
    • ‘Police in Laindon are urging the public to be vigilant after a string of thefts from people using a cash machine in the town.’
    • ‘There were three thefts, three acts of criminal damage and an attempted burglary last month alone.’
    robbery, stealing, thieving, larceny, thievery, robbing, pilfering, pilferage, purloining
    View synonyms


Old English thīefth, thēofth, of Germanic origin; related to thief.