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New Jersey Theft Lawyer

Being charged with theft or a related charge is a serious offense and should not be taken lightly. The criminal penalties associated with being found guilty for theft can have potentially serious implications on one’s life.

If you have been charged with a theft related offense, seek out a distinguished theft lawyer immediately, so they can begin building the most robust defense possible for your case.

Local Theft Cases

Thefts are not uncommon in New Jersey. In its annual crime report for 2015, the New Jersey Police Department reported more than 115,000 theft-related incidents. The report also found that:

  • A burglary (non-violent) occurs every 18 minutes and 51 seconds
  • A theft (larceny form) occurs every 4 minutes and 57 seconds
  • A motor vehicle theft occurs every 44 minutes and 41 seconds

The majority of these offenses are committed by adults. However, a number of juveniles have been charged too. In rare circumstances, a juvenile may be treated as an adult depending on the nature and severity of the crime committed.

Defining Theft and Intent

Theft laws in New Jersey are governed by Title 2C the New Jersey Code of Criminal Justice. In the most general sense, theft is the unlawful taking of another’s property with the intent to deprive that person of their property. The intent requirement means that a defendant had the specific intent to commit the crime they are charged with.

A prudent criminal defense attorney will often hinge on the intent requirement, as this can be very tricky for the State to prove beyond a reasonable doubt.

If found guilty for a theft-related crime in New Jersey, the penalties and jail time imposed will depend on the value of the property or services involved. If an individual is found guilty of stealing property that is worth $75,000 or more, then they can face anywhere between 5-10 years in jail and a maximum fine of up to $150,000.

Motor Vehicle Theft in New Jersey

New Jersey has statutory law dealing particularly with motor vehicle theft.  Individuals found guilty of motor vehicle theft.A first conviction for motor vehicle theft results in a $500 fine and a minimum one-year suspension of the person’s driver’s license.

A second conviction results in a fine of $750 and a two-year suspension of the person’s driver’s license. If the car that is stolen is more than $7,500 and not ultimately recovered, the court may impose an additional fine as it sees fit.

Theft-Related Crimes

Title 2C of the New Jersey Code of Criminal Justice outlines many forms of theft. Examples of theft-crimes recognized in New Jersey include:

  • Theft- (taking someone else’s property with the specific intent to deprive)
  • Motor Vehicle Theft
  • Theft by Deception
  • Theft by Extortion
  • Shoplifting
  • Theft of Services
Help from an Attorney

The penalties, fines, and jail time associated that can arise as a result of a conviction for a theft-related crime should not be taken lightly. Individuals can face serious jail time and financially crippling penalties.

In situations where motor vehicle theft is involved, individuals can lose their ability to operate a motor vehicle. Hiring an experienced New Jersey theft lawyer is critical when charged with a theft-related crime.

Criminal defense attorneys are familiar with the legal process and will fight to see that justice is served fairly. If you have been charged with a theft-related crime, seek out the advice of a criminal defense attorney as soon as possible.