Students of Malay often use 'kecurian' to mean 'theft' when 'pencurian' is the correct word to be used. Let me explain the differenc in meaning between both words.
'Pencurian' is 'perbuatan mencuri' or the act of stealing whereas 'kecurian' is 'dimasuki pencuri' or burglared. Perhaps the following two sentences will make this difference stands out by itself.
1 Pencurian sering berlaku di taman perumahan ini.
[Theft often occurs in this housing estate.]
2 Rumah Pak Ali kecurian semalam dan banyak barang bernilai dilarikan oleh pencuri itu.
[Pak Ali's house was burglared last night and many valuables were taken by the thief.]
So much for the difference between 'kecurian' and 'pencurian' in the Malay language.
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