HOUSTON - Texas Gov. Greg Abbott is making it a felony to be a porch pirate.
The governor signed HB 37, which redefines criminal penalties for mail theft in Texas. The law will go into effect on September 1.
According to the law, mail theft is a misdemeanor if mail is stolen from fewer than 10 people with a fine of $4,000, but becomes a felony if more than 10 people were victims of the thefts. Jail time ranges from 180 days to 10 years in prison with the option of a fine of up to $10,000.
Additional penalties could be levied if identifying information was included in the stolen mail or the person targeted were elderly or disabled.
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