Not sure I agree with the fact that they would be "way bigger" without the gimmick. I think, if anything, they're more memorable and I'm not sure they would be as popular singing about relationships the same way as a thousand other bands without the "criminal" spin on things.
Yeah, I can see it that way too. It makes them stand out a lot more. I guess I feel it turns a lot of people off too. People assume they're a joke band but their songwriting is really top-notch, and more radio friendly than that of the more popular pop punk bands these days, like The Wonder Years. A song like Heart Shaped Guitar could really take off commercially, with the right people pushing. Do they give a shit about that anyway? Likely not.