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false pretences

plural noun
(criminal law) a former name for deception See obtaining by deception
a similar misrepresentation used to obtain anything, such as trust or affection (esp in the phrase under false pretences)
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Examples from the Web for false pretences
Historical Examples
  • The whole transaction was eminently profitable, but Henry had certainly got his money out of his own subjects by false pretences.

    Ten Tudor Statesmen Arthur D. Innes
  • He simply could not believe that his son could have asked him for the money on false pretences.

    Julian Home Dean Frederic W. Farrar
  • Cheats who go from door to door, begging on false pretences.

  • You have known why ever since you had the meanness to enter Wildtree on false pretences.

    A Dog with a Bad Name Talbot Baines Reed
  • Rallywood had gained his position among them by false pretences to serve his own ends—gained it to betray them.

    A Modern Mercenary Kate Prichard and Hesketh Vernon Hesketh-Prichard
  • You know, I came out to this bally country on false pretences, as it were.

  • Then, if you do get 'The Towers' now, it will be on false pretences.

    Bluebell Mrs. George Croft Huddleston
  • "I take it on false pretences," said I with a laugh, as I shook it.

    Simon Dale Anthony Hope
  • He could not accuse her of passing herself off upon him with false pretences.

  • To the self-constituted Apostle, false pretences were familiar.

    Not Paul, But Jesus Jeremy Bentham

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