Receiving Stolen Property
In the age of the internet, it is not surprising to see so many consumers are making purchases online. These savvy shoppers are not only looking for the best deal, but also for a product that can come with other extras, like free shipping. There are many great stores that provide online sales that are completely legitimate, but there are also sketchy websites. You may be inclined to save a great deal and make the purchase at the website you’re not entirely sure about instead of a well-known store, but beware of potential charges. Knowing the general retail value of an item, it’s not difficult to tell when a merchant is possibly selling stolen goods. Whether the cost is significantly different or if the information provided seems choppy, it is likely that the article you are about to purchase is stolen. If you suspect that a potential purchase is likely to be stolen property, think twice before you click.
Under New Jersey law, receiving stolen property is considered theft if the person knowingly receives the goods or brings it into the state having the knowledge of or believing that it was probably stolen. This belief is not measured to your personal standards, but whether a reasonable person would have thought the item was stolen. Under the statute, it also states that there is a presumption of knowledge or belief of theft if the person found with the stolen property has two or more stolen items in their possession. This means it is presumed that you were aware of the stolen goods if you are found with items that had been previously stolen on two or more occasions.
If convicted, you are look at potential penalties that vary according to the amount of the stolen property. If the property value was less than $200, you may face a disorderly persons offense, which comes with a potential fine of up to $1,000 and 6 months in jail. If the property was worth between $200-$500, you can face a penalty of up to 18 months in prison and a potential fine not exceeding $10,000. If the property was more than $500 but less than $75,000, there is a potential 3 to 5 years in prison with a fine of up to $15,000. For property valued at more than $75,000, you could potentially spend 5-10 years in prison as well be fined up to $150,000.
If you have been charged with receiving stolen property, contact an experienced defense attorney right away. There are many defenses and strategies that can help you either achieve minimal penalties or possibly have the charge dismissed altogether. The Law Office of Zapicchi & Liller has the experience you need to form a strong defense against receiving stolen property charge. Whether you were simply a savvy shopper and trusted the wrong website for multiple purchases or for other decisions made with unsuspecting consequences, call today and receive a free consultation at (609) 291-9500.