answered on 19/12/2017
It is legal to take someone’s trash where the court recognizes that the item has been abandoned (rather than accidentally misplaced by the owner, for example.) Here, the fact that an item is found in the rubbish chute would be one factor in favour of a finding that the item was abandoned, though it is not the only factor to consider. A finding of abandonment is to be inferred by the court, exercising common sense, from the circumstances. They will have regard to the place where the item was found and the item’s nature and value.