break a/the law

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break a/the law

To do something that is illegal. If you shoplift, you are breaking the law, period. The statutes are different in different places so sometimes you can break a law without even knowing it!
See also: break, law

break a law

 and break the law
to fail to obey a law; to act contrary to a law. Lisa broke the law when she drove the wrong way on a one-way street. If you never break the law, you will never get arrested.
See also: break, law
References in classic literature ?
Demetrios Contos not only never broke the law again, but he became a very good friend of ours, and on more than one occasion he ran up to Benicia to have a gossip with us.
So far there had been no exception to its tacit rule that those who broke the law of probity must pay; and every one was aware that even Beaufort and Beaufort's wife would be offered up unflinchingly to this principle.
Whether FBI Director James Comey broke the law may hinge on whether he had political motivations or was merely doing his job by reviving Democrat Hillary Clinton's email controversy just days before the Nov.
CLAIMS that Keith Vaz broke the law are being probed by police.
FORMER US presidential hopeful John Edwards yesterday denied he broke the law when he spent almost $1million to cover up his love child shame.
Christopher Graham said the internet giant broke the law when Street View cars collected personal data from unsecured wi-fi networks.
South Wales Police broke the law by sending English-only correspondence to her, yet she's the one paying the pounds 700 plus fine.
Plus, those who broke the law weren't penalized," he added.
Thanks, whoever it was in the Greenside area of Huddersfield who thought 'me, me, me' as they broke the law.
Summary: The Duchess of York is reportedly facing arrest over claims she broke the law by taking part in a TV documentary about Turkish orphans.
citizens who broke the law smuggling guns to the nascent Jewish state proved there are times when it's acceptable to break the law.
SO, are our labour Leaders actually going to claim that even though the donations broke the law, because they were unaware of the lawbreaking they should face no action ?
Bernstein: "She broke the law if, indeed, she perjured herself .
Bill Clinton didn't break any law when he messed around with a woman other than his wife; he only broke the law when he lied about what he did.
The letter is not only anti-gay and offensive, but Pastor Combs broke the law and should be punished accordingly" said Scan Kosofsky, Triangle Foundation's Director of Policy.