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Last Updated on: 9th August 2023, 01:38 am
Second degree charges of criminal possession of stolen property is a violation of New York Penal Law 165.52. The offense is a violation of New York State law. The maximum penalties may include up to 15 years in prison. Second degree charges of criminal possession of stolen property is a serious offense in New York. You have the right to an attorney to represent you if you face charges of stolen property in New York.
Possession of stolen property, second degree in New York
Charges for stolen property in New York are divided into degrees. The degrees get progressively more serious the greater the amounts of money that are involved. First-degree possession of stolen property is the most serious of the possession of stolen property offenses. Second-degree possession of stolen property is the second-most serious charge for possession of stolen property.
Second-degree possession of stolen property is a Class C felony. The maximum penalty that you can receive is 15 years in prison. You may also receive probation, fines and seizure of the property involved. The court determines the appropriate penalty based on a number of circumstances.
If you’re convicted of the charges, you might receive the maximum of 15 years in prison, but you might also receive a sentence of only probation, fines and restitution. If you’re not convicted of the offense against you, you receive no sentence at all. If you’re found not guilty, the charges against you are merely dismissed. If you plead guilty or you’re found guilty of a lesser degree of possession of stolen property or a different offense, the maximum penalties are reduced.
What is the charge of second-degree charges of criminal possession of stolen property in New York?
The charge of second-degree level criminal possession of stolen property in New York has several elements. All of the different elements of the crime must be true in your case or you’re not guilty based on New York law. First, you must knowingly possess the property. If you possess the property unintentionally or someone hides the stolen property in your stuff, you’re not guilty of the offense of knowingly possessing stolen property.
Second, the property must be stolen. If you purchased the property or you have it by permission, you’re not possessing stolen property. The state’s attorney must show that the property you have is stolen. In addition, you must possess the property with an intent to benefit yourself or another person. You may also possess the property with the purpose of preventing the owner from recovering the property.
For the charge of second-degree possession of stolen property, the amount involved must be $50,000 or more. The amount of the property involved is an element that law enforcement must prove when they bring the charges against you. The police may not simply state what they believe is the value of the property. Instead, they must show with evidence that the value of the property is $50,000 or more. Challenging the value of the property is one way that may be effective to challenge your second-degree possession of stolen property charge in New York.
Defending against second-degree stolen property charges in New York
There are a number of ways to go about defending yourself if you face charges of second-degree stolen property anywhere in New York. Law enforcement must prove that the property is not legally owned but stolen. They may not admit hearsay statements or their own conjecture. Instead, they must have witnesses available to prove that the property in question is stolen. You can contact witnesses and conduct your own investigation. You can challenge a witness’ testimony based on poor recollection, bias or even video evidence that may contradict what a witness has to say.
Law enforcement must take care in order to preserve the property in question. They must go about their investigation in a lawful way which includes not violating your constitutional rights or using impermissible force in order to investigate your claim. Law enforcement may not threaten you in order to induce a guilty plea. If you choose to accept a plea, you must do so of your own free will. If you’re facing charges of second-degree illegal stolen property possession, you may have valid defenses to the charges. Working quickly can help you assert your rights and clear your name.
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Second Degree Criminal Possession Of Stolen Property: New York Penal Law 165.52
Persons involved with the stolen property may be charged under a number of different statutes in New York. The Empire State’s laws present varying degrees of severity with stolen property in a manner similar to weapons and drug-related offenses. One misconception, however, is property crimes won’t be taken as seriously as more violent ones. Stolen property charges can rise to felonies, which absolutely reveals their seriousness.
New York Penal Law 165.52 unambiguously details the crime of “Criminal possession of stolen property in the second degree.” This particular crime is a Class C felony meaning significant penalties could be levied at someone convicted of the charges. Anyone arrested for a crime under New York Penal Law 165.52 should speak with an attorney to understand the scope of the charges and to discuss a viable defense strategy.
The Monetary Value of Stolen Property Under the Statute
Stealing and possessing stolen property remains a crime regardless of the value of the items stolen. The more valuable the item, however, the more serious the crime and the more significant the potential penalties become. Stealing a laptop worth $1,200 won’t be treated with any less seriousness than stealing several consumer electronics with a combined value of $3,500. However, the penalty increases to the more serious nature of the latter crime. Possession of stolen property with a value exceeding $1,000 becomes a crime of the fourth degree. When the value exceeded $3,000, the incident would be a third-degree crime.
At the second-degree level, charges reflect very serious stolen property violations. The monetary value at issue with the crime of “criminal possession of stolen property in the second degree” involves stolen property with the value exceeding ,000. The immediate perception among many would be a suspect charged with stealing one item of such high value. Certainly, this is possible. The state of New York acts as the home to many jewelry and art stores. Manhattan and other Burroughs in New York City definitely have their share of such establishments. One single piece of jewelry or one painting could be well worth $50,000. Likely, however, most incidents of second-degree possession of stolen property refer to someone caught with a collective of stolen merchandise.
For example, if the police pull over and search a truck, they could discover $60,000 worth of stolen furniture and consumer electronics. The contents of the truck could have been pilfered from a retail store. Regardless of the origin of the stolen merchandise, when the value is more than $50,000, the charges are Class C felony level.
Knowing Possession of Stolen Property
The statute also clearly states guilt derives from “knowingly possesses stolen property.” In the aforementioned example of the truck, a person could conceivably be asked to perform a delivery and not know the contents of the truck are stolen merchandise. Another possible situation could entail a relative asking someone to “look after” personal belongings. The individual keeping and possessing a host of items in a garage might have no idea he/she has received and stored stolen property.
Persons unknowingly drawn into the possession of stolen property could mount a defense to the charges based on their lack of knowledge about the merchandise. As is the case with all criminal proceedings, guilt must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt. An attorney capable of raising reasonable doubt might very well procure a not guilty verdict. Hopefully, the evidence of the defendant’s lack of knowledge is so strong the charges could be dropped or dismissed.
Other Than An Owner
The statute also points out the person who possesses the stolen merchandise does so with clear intent to benefit him or herself or another individual “other than the owner thereof.” Also, the suspect could also seek to “impede the recovery” of the merchandise to the lawful owner. In short, someone takes possession of the merchandise through theft with the full intention of denying the owner of his/her rights to the property. Stealing merchandise, hiding it, and seeking to sell the goods reflects a definitive example of denying an owner his/her rights to the property.
In a trial, a defense attorney could question issues of “intent to benefit” or “impede the recovery.” As always, guilt must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt.
The Class C Felony
The penalties for a Class C felony display how serious the state of New York takes violations of this statute. The sentencing for a non-violent Class C felony depends on the circumstances of the case and prior conviction history of the defendant. Someone with no prior convictions might only be sentenced to probation, although the possibility of up to seven years in jail looms. Those with previous non-violent and/or violent convictions face mandatory minimum prison sentences. If found guilty, reputable counsel could prove enormously beneficial during the sentencing phase.