New Jersey Fencing Law
We represent clients charged with N.J.S.A. 2C:20-7.1; New Jersey criminal fencing complaints and indictments filed in Middlesex County, Monmouth County, Mercer County, Somerset County, Essex County, Union County, and Hudson County.
There are two offenses related to fencing.
The first offense only applies to a person who is a dealer in property - someone who buys and sells property as a business.
A person who is in possession of altered property and is not a dealer in property is not guilty of this offense.
Altered property within the meaning of this offense is property in which the identifying features such as serial numbers and permanently affixed labels of property have been removed or altered without the consent of the manufacturer.
Possession signifies purposeful control and dominion: the ability to affect physically and care for the item during a span of time.
In addition to proving that the defendant purposely possessed the property, the state must prove that the defendant knew or should have known that the identifying features had been removed or altered.
There are three affirmative defenses.
First, the person lawfully possessed the usual indicia of ownership - for instance, certificate of title for a motor vehicle - in addition to mere possession.
Second, defendant was unaware it was the property of another.
Third, defendant acted under an honest claim of right to the property involved or that he had a right to acquire or dispose of it as he did.
A person could take back property which was stolen from him.
In order to obtain a conviction for the offense of possession of altered property that state must prove five elements.
First, defendant is a dealer in property.
Second, the identifying features of the property in question have been removed or altered without the consent of the manufacturer.
Third, defendant possessed the altered property.
Fourth, it was defendant's purpose to possess the property.
Fifth, defendant knew or should have known that the identifying features had been removed or altered.
The second offense of fencing is dealing in stolen property - property that has been the subject of unlawful taking.
The offense includes anyone who traffics, initiates, organizes, plans, finances, directs, manages or supervises trafficking in stolen property.
The state must prove that defendant acted knowingly.
There are two affirmative defenses.
First, defendant was unaware that the property belonged to another.
Second, defendant acted under an honest claim of right to the property involved.
The state must prove three elements.
First, defendant traffics, initiates, organizes, plans, finances, directs, manages or supervises trafficking in property.
Second, the property is stolen.
Third, defendant knows the property is stolen.
If you have any questions for a New Jersey criminal defense attorney about a New Jersey Criminal fencing charge, please do not hesitate to contact us.