Borrowing & Stealing; the differences

Did You Know?

Stealing is a crime. It is when someone knows they must not take something that does not belong to them and take it anyway, The property belongs to someone else. The person who has taken it does not intend to give it back to the person who owns it. Sometimes, we use the word 'victim' to describe someone who has had a crime committed against them. A crime is when someone does something that the law says they should not do.

The person stealing is being dishonest. 

Stealing is a crime.


Someone who steals may be sent to prison after a court has found them guilty of the crime. A 'court' is a place where people trained to know about the law listen to the facts and decide, when they have heard all the facts, whether there is enough information to say that a crime has been committed.


If they believe that a crime has been committed, after they have listened to all the facts, they then must decide whether the person who is accused - who the police and the prosecutors say did the crime - is, in fact, guilty - that means the facts show that the person was responsible for committing the crime.

Borrowing & Stealing; the differences

It is important to know the differences between borrowing and stealing for a number of reasons:

  • So that you know right from wrong.
  • So that you don't get into trouble with the law.

To successfully borrow an item of property we must ensure that:

The owner has the right to attach their own conditions, such as returning the item on a certain date.

Borrowing is very different from stealing. 

Stealing is a crime and we can describe it like this:
"Someone knows they must not take the property and they take it anyway. The property belongs to someone else and they do not intend to give it back to the person who owns it."

The person stealing is being dishonest.