New Jersey Extortion Law
We represent clients charged with N.J.S.A. 2C:20-5; New Jersey theft by extortion complaints and indictments filed in Middlesex County, Monmouth County, Mercer County, Somerset County, Essex County, Union County, and Hudson County.
This is a crime of the second degree where coercion is used to make the victim transfer his property.
Express, implicit, oral or written threats are all covered in this situation.
A person extorts if he purposely threatens to inflict bodily injury or physically to confine or restrain anyone or to commit any other criminal offense.
Second, a threat to accuse anyone of an offense or cause charges to be instituted against any person is a threat by extortion.
This can be an offense even if the person did in fact commit the charge.
It is an affirmative defense if the property obtained was honestly claimed as restitution or indemnification for harm done or as lawful compensation for property or services.
Third, a threat to expose or publicize any secret or any asserted fact which tends to subject any person to hatred, contempt, ridicule or impair his credit or business repute.
It is an affirmative defense to a charge of this type of threat that the property obtained was honestly claimed as restitution or indemnification for harm done or as lawful compensation for property or services.
The fourth type is a threat to take or withhold action as an official or cause an official to take or withhold action.
Although this is similar to bribery, it is the "intimidation" that distinguishes it from bribery.
Also, the same transaction may constitute both crimes.
In addition, this offense may occur without a public official being actually involved.
The fifth type is a threat to bring about or continue a strike, boycott or other collective action.
The key element of this threat is that the property demanded or received is not for the benefit of the group in whose interest the defendant purports to act.
The sixth type of threat is a threat to testify, provide information or withhold testimony or information with regard to another's legal claim or defense.
The seventh type of threat is to inflict any other harm which would not substantially benefit the defendant but which is calculated to materially harm another person.
There are two elements to this threat.
The threatened harm must not substantially benefit the defendant.
Secondly the threatened harm must be calculated to materially harm another person.
The must prove purposeful conduct - conduct with a conscious object to obtain the other person's property - on the part of defendant.
In addition, the state must prove that the defendant did unlawfully obtain the property.
Hence, there are four material elements that the state must prove in theft by extortion.
First, the defendant obtained the property of another.
Second, the defendant obtained the property as a consequence of at least one of the seven types of threats.
Third, the defendant purposely made the threat in order to obtain the property .
Fourth, the defendant unlawfully obtained the property.
If you have any questions for a New Jersey criminal defense attorney about a New Jersey theft by extortion charge, please do not hesitate to contact us.