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  1. #1
    Light to Counter the Dim MTAtech's Avatar
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    Is "Stealing" Garbage a Crime?

    Crooks' 1G-a-night cardboard thefts
    A network of nighttime thieves was busted after making a lot of green swiping recyclables from New York streets, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said Tuesday.
    Eight men were arrested in the trash-for-cash scheme, Brown charged.
    The scammers worked in two-man teams, stealing 1-ton bales of cardboard that companies had left out for private carters to take away, Brown said.
    "For the price of renting a box van, each team could net close to $1,000 a night by bringing the stolen cardboard to a recyclable transfer station," Brown said.
    The value of recyclables has surged in recent months to as much as $75 per ton, prosecutors said.
    Since when is taking stuff people left out in the trash a crime?

    The Police are allowed to take your garbage without a warrant.
    Conservatives: "If the facts disagree with our opinion, ignore the facts -- or at least misrepresent them."

  2. #2
    Ride 'em Cowboy Steve R Jones's Avatar
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    The scammers worked in two-man teams, stealing 1-ton bales of cardboard that companies had left out for private carters to take away
    Me thinks the story left out the part where the companies who took the time to bale up the cardboard were expecting to get paid for it.
    The propeller is just a big fan in front of the plane used to keep the pilot cool. When it stops, you can actually watch the pilot start sweating.

  3. #3
    Light to Counter the Dim MTAtech's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve R Jones View Post
    Me thinks the story left out the part where the companies who took the time to bale up the cardboard were expecting to get paid for it.
    Would that really matter? Doesn't placing garbage for collection constitute abandonment of property?
    Conservatives: "If the facts disagree with our opinion, ignore the facts -- or at least misrepresent them."

  4. #4
    Banned sharder8's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MTAtech View Post
    Would that really matter? Doesn't placing garbage for collection constitute abandonment of property?
    No! The company gets paid for the cardboard by the ton. They store it outside for pickup and then get a check for it. It's theft, plain and simple.

    Hey MTA, if you set your big screen LCD outside while waiting for the carpet to dry, while getting the carpets cleaned . . . did you abandon it?


    Harder

  5. #5
    OAP Theophylact's Avatar
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    No; in this case, it's part of a contract. If it were municipal trash, no problem.

    In DC, especially in fency-shmency neighborhoods like Cleveland Park, antiquers and others come around on trash day and highgrade the stuff. You can get some pretty amazing things that way.
    Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored. -- Aldous Huxley

  6. #6
    Light to Counter the Dim MTAtech's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Theophylact View Post
    No; in this case, it's part of a contract. If it were municipal trash, no problem.

    In DC, especially in fency-shmency neighborhoods like Cleveland Park, antiquers and others come around on trash day and highgrade the stuff. You can get some pretty amazing things that way.
    Ahhh, so you are saying a casual passer by has a duty to determine the contractual relationship between the parties for trash left at the curb, before taking it?

    BTW, vans circle my neighborhood on trash day and get really good stuff.
    Conservatives: "If the facts disagree with our opinion, ignore the facts -- or at least misrepresent them."

  7. #7
    Ride 'em Cowboy Steve R Jones's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MTAtech View Post
    Ahhh, so you are saying a casual passer by has a duty to determine the contractual relationship between the parties for trash left at the curb, before taking it?

    BTW, vans circle my neighborhood on trash day and get really good stuff.
    Yep...When the trash gets into the ONE TON catagory - you should ask first.
    The propeller is just a big fan in front of the plane used to keep the pilot cool. When it stops, you can actually watch the pilot start sweating.

  8. #8
    OAP Theophylact's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MTAtech View Post
    Ahhh, so you are saying a casual passer by has a duty to determine the contractual relationship between the parties for trash left at the curb, before taking it?

    BTW, vans circle my neighborhood on trash day and get really good stuff.
    Generally speaking, if it's a neighborhood zoned for residential only, you can be pretty sure it's municipal trash. If you're scavenging in front of a business, it won't be.
    Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored. -- Aldous Huxley

  9. #9
    Ultimate Member Chuckiechan's Avatar
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    Cardboard is sold to recyclers. Like aluminum, it's considered a recylced item. It's going for around $ 50.00 a ton.

    Consider a Super Walmart with groceries. Can you imagine how much cardboard waste they create? It's used to lower their costs, buy sending the money received back into the company.

    If we are talking about a few boxes, that's one thing, but bales are another.

    I say hang'em! "Cardboard rustling" - a crime creating silent sufferers, ashamed to admit thier shame.
    "The Obama Administration is almost over. It is the end of an error."

  10. #10
    PC Upgrade Procrastinator ShyguyXPC's Avatar
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    Residential Garbage, it depends I have heard of some states or counties where digging through some one else garbage is illegal, but I haven't looked it up to see if its true or what local laws dictate around here.

    Just to add to Steve and Theo's posts, Business's, as a general rule of thumb, for any business, whether its legal or not in your state, is if there is something of "value" just laying around out back or in front, ask that business first if they are throwing it away or just storing it first.

    adds to Chuckie's post, Cardboard bales are a no no for sure, what they can get for a 1 ton or more bale of card board is extra income for that store. there's a lot of people that think they just "donate" the card board for recycling, some places that might be true, but most get paid for the card board.

    Imagine you were collecting a dumpster load of crushed aluminum cans to bring in for recycling for extra income and someone came by and stole the whole thing over night because it was left outside the house or garage. I'd imagine some of you might be a bit pissed about that?

    anyways, with some business's too, they store equipment and other "junk" outside while doing a remodel, rennovation, etc, as well as like our company, sometimes during those remodels some stuff is getting thrown, some like Freezers, Coolers, shelves, or other various things are stored outside to be given back to vendors, taken to some sort of reconditioning site or warehouse to be reused in other stores, etc, until they say so, that is still store property. can and in most instances will constitute theft of property from the store or business.

    was only a couple years ago with out latest remodel in our store (1st one in 15+ years), we had several mobile/portable freezers and coolers stolen from the back of our store during that time, one of them was tracked down thanks to an anonymous witness who knew of the theft, ended up an old guy thought it was garbage and rolled up his pick up, loaded it up and drove off thinking it would come in handy to store meat in.

    ended up the witness who knew of it, was one of his neighbors and had seen him loading it into his garage LOL...

    the other coolers, were never found, company lost some big bucks in those ones, as they had planned on sending them in to be reconditioned and reused. the cooler the old guy took was to be sent back to a Vendor for them to do what they wanted with it.



    our Grocery store makes probably a dozen and half bales a week on slow weeks, more when its busy.

    when I worked at Target years ago, especially during Christmas time, and keep in mind our store was a low end Target store (at the time there was 4 classifications of them, not sure how it is now, Class D was your bottom rung store, Class C was a bit bigger with addition of a Pharmacy, and Dedicated Photo lab and some other improvements, this is what our store was upgraded to when I started, Class B was your average larger Target Store you'd find in many large cities, and Class A was your "Super" Targets.)

    but for our Class C store, during christmas it wasn't uncommon to go through 3 or 4 bales a day at least, 7 days a week, and end up with an impressive amount of cardboard stock piled behind the store.

    netted quite a bit extra in income for the store I can tell you that. not as much as say in sales, but for simple recycling? even factoring in slow sales weeks, it added up after a years time to some nice numbers.
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  11. #11
    Light to Counter the Dim MTAtech's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chuckiechan View Post
    Cardboard is sold to recyclers. Like aluminum, it's considered a recylced item. It's going for around $ 50.00 a ton.

    Consider a Super Walmart with groceries. Can you imagine how much cardboard waste they create? It's ty to secure used to lower their costs, buy sending the money received back into the company.

    If we are talking about a few boxes, that's one thing, but bales are another.
    My point is that if a store, such as WalMart, is collecting materials to recycle and sell back, they have a duty to store those materials in a secure area, not use the public streets where garbage is routinely awaiting pickup. If they do, it's fair game for anyone passing by as it can be construed as being abandoned.

    I'm interested to see how this plays out in court. The courts have ruled that police can sift through garbage without warrant under the pretext that the materials are abandoned. If sheer volume changes the equation, then a large scale cocaine dealer, who is recycling shipment boxes, has more protection than a small scale dealer. That doesn't make logical sense.
    Last edited by MTAtech; September 10th, 2009 at 05:40 AM.
    Conservatives: "If the facts disagree with our opinion, ignore the facts -- or at least misrepresent them."

  12. #12
    Ride 'em Cowboy Steve R Jones's Avatar
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    Walmart is a good example...they don't put stuff out on public streets. From the curb inwards is their land...so they store the cardboard in the back by the loading docks.
    The propeller is just a big fan in front of the plane used to keep the pilot cool. When it stops, you can actually watch the pilot start sweating.

  13. #13
    PC Upgrade Procrastinator ShyguyXPC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MTAtech View Post
    My point is that if a store, such as WalMart, is collecting materials to recycle and sell back, they have a duty to store those materials in a secure area, not use the public streets where garbage is routinely awaiting pickup. If they do, it's fair game for anyone passing by as it can be construed as being abandoned.

    I'm interested to see how this plays out in court. The courts have ruled that police can sift through garbage without warrant under the pretext that the materials are abandoned. If sheer volume changes the equation, then a large scale cocaine dealer, who is recycling shipment boxes, has more protection than a small scale dealer. That doesn't make logical sense.
    Quote Originally Posted by Steve R Jones View Post
    Walmart is a good example...they don't put stuff out on public streets. From the curb inwards is their land...so they store the cardboard in the back by the loading docks.
    Steves right, most retailers, grocery store chains, etc do this. the "garbage" is store in back, where the trucks roll in to drop off their shipments.

    or at the least is stored on one of the sides of the buildings.

    they don't store that stuff in the front, first of all, takes away from parking for customers, 2nd takes away valuable space for selling products, like Garden products during spring and summer, etc, and 3rd and probably most importantly to keep a "clean" image.


    Though things may be different in New York City or other Metro area's with little space, but most anywhere else this is usually how things are done.
    Last edited by ShyguyXPC; September 10th, 2009 at 06:32 AM.
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  14. #14
    Light to Counter the Dim MTAtech's Avatar
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    Sure, if someone climbed a fence or cut a lock to take the cardboard, that's stealing. But if the stuff is on the curb, that's a different story.
    Conservatives: "If the facts disagree with our opinion, ignore the facts -- or at least misrepresent them."

  15. #15
    Ride 'em Cowboy Steve R Jones's Avatar
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    "On the curb" would inply a public traffic area and in most cases it'd also mean come n get it.

    So be carefull where you park your car when you get home tonight
    The propeller is just a big fan in front of the plane used to keep the pilot cool. When it stops, you can actually watch the pilot start sweating.

  16. #16
    Ultimate Member Chuckiechan's Avatar
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    First of all "On public property" means they can get a fine from the city and forced to move it, or have the city take it.

    Either way, you ain't getting it.

    Bottom line, everything belongs to someone. Fish belong to the government. What you can do on your property is regulated. And if it's not on your property, by definition it is on someone elses.

    Even collecting cans on the roadside is technically "stealing recyclables from the city" since jail crews and volunteers do clean up work and recycle the aluminum.
    "The Obama Administration is almost over. It is the end of an error."

  17. #17
    Ultimate Member RayH's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ShyguyXPC View Post
    Residential Garbage, it depends I have heard of some states or counties where digging through some one else garbage is illegal, but I haven't looked it up to see if its true or what local laws dictate around here.
    In San Francisco, garbage service is licensed and regulated. The garbage company pays the city pays for the right to service garbage in San Francisco. The garbage company has paid for the right to have the recycled material. The cost of garbage service gets offset by recycle. There are containers for such.

    As for cardboard, I'm not sure. There are several independent cardboard collectors. It doesn't seem that the local garbage trucks are set up for them. Generally, it looks to be done by immigrants in homemade flatbeds. They each seem to have a route.

    I recycle cars left outside the buildings of car dealerships!
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  18. #18
    Banned sharder8's Avatar
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    In Bend, OR, it is illegal to go through someones garbage or recycle bins that have been set out to the curb for pickup. Deschutes County Landfill and recycling center prohibit you from picking up and removing anything on/from their property.

    They have camera's to watch you and they will prosecute.


    Harder

  19. #19
    Rich Obama Donor tony_j15's Avatar
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    At my store we recycle cardboard in bales and usually have a stack of pallets waiting to be picked up as well. If we catch anyone trying to take it we tell them off and then call the police. It's our merchandise on our property. Piss off.
    Get off of my roof!

  20. #20
    Forerunner Shipuuden's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MTAtech View Post
    Sure, if someone climbed a fence or cut a lock to take the cardboard, that's stealing. But if the stuff is on the curb, that's a different story.
    Anything outside the store is technically their property. Just like taking milk crates and the pallets from behind the store is illegal without permission...
    You people are you satisfied with this kind of world? I'm not.

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