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Highland Park NJ Theft Lawyer

Charged With Burglary, Shoplifting, Writing a Bad Check, Theft by Deception, Receiving Stolen Property, Credit Card Theft or Another Theft Offense in Highland Park New Jersey

When a person is charged with a theft offense in Highland Park or another municipality, it can adversely affect them. The reason is because they are not only only subject to the penalties for the charge but are also left with a criminal record for stealing which can inhibit your obtaining a job, maintaining immigration status and in other ways. A savvy lawyer can go a long way in terms of averting these negative consequences. That attorneys at our firm possess the attributes to persuasively defend your Highland Park NJ theft charge.

We are the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, the largest defense team in the region. Our eight criminal lawyers include former Middlesex County prosecutors that other seasoned litigators with over 100 years of combined experience. An attorney that has handled many theft charges just like yours is available to conduct a review of the facts of your case and to advise you as to your best options for avoiding a conviction. Contact us anytime 24/7 at 732-246-7126 for a free consultation.

Highland Park Theft Charge

Theft is generally defined under New Jersey law as the “unlawful taking” or “exercising of control” over property of another person with the intention of depriving the owner of his benefit. There are a slew of theft charges that apply to more specific scenarios involving stealing or fraud including:

Bad CheckBurglaryCredit Card Fraud
Credit Card TheftForgeryIdentity Theft
Obtaining CDS by FraudReceiving Stolen PropertyRobbery
ShopliftingTheft by DeceptionTheft of Movable Property
Theft of ServicesCar TheftInsurance Fraud

 

Theft Crimes and Penalties in Highland Park New Jersey

In New Jersey, theft crimes are typically classified in terms of degree of offense (i.e. first degree, second degree, third degree or fourth degree crime, or disorderly persons offense) according to the value of the stolen property. What follows is a brief overview of each classification and the penalties that apply to each:

  • A Disorderly Persons Offense.  A disorderly persons offense for some form of theft (e.g. shoplifting, bad check, etc.) applies where the loss or damage resulting from the theft is under $200. If convicted of theft as a “disorderly persons offense” you will face penalties that include up to six months in jail, and/or a fine up to $1,000.
  • A Fourth-Degree Crime. It is a fourth degree crime to commit a theft involving property or services (e.g. theft of services) with a value of at least $200 but less than $500. A fourth degree theft results in punishment that includes up 18 months of incarceration and/or a fine of up to $10,000. One offense that always constitutes a fourth degree crime credit card theft.
  • A Third-Degree Crime.  Stealing property with a value of at least $500 but less than $75,000 results in a third degree crime. It is also a third degree crime,  irrespective of value of property stolen, when someone commits a theft involving: (1) a motor vehicle, boat, airplane, firearm, horse or pet; (2) a New Jersey prescription blank; (3) burglary (without a threat or weapon); and (4) credit card fraud (i.e. using a credit card to purchase something that you know is not yours). A conviction for third degree theft is punishable by incarceration for a period of three to five years and/or a fine of up to $15,000.
  •  A Second-Degree Crime. It is a second degree crime where the theft involves property or service with a value of $75,000 or more, as well as, theft crimes involving: (1) theft by extortion; (2) burglary where a weapon or threat is involved; (3) strong-arm robbery; and (4) some forms of identity theft and insurance fraud. If convicted of second degree theft, a defendant faces imprisonment for a period of five to 10 years and a fine of up to $150,000.

In addition to jail time and fines, if convicted of any theft crime in New Jersey, you may be ordered to pay restitution to the victim, meaning that you may be ordered to compensate the victim for the value of his or her financial losses. In addition, if the theft involves stealing a motor vehicle, you will be required to pay a $500 penalty and will have your driver’s license suspended for one year. A second conviction for theft of a motor vehicle will require you to pay a $750 penalty, and have your driver’s license suspended for two years. A third or subsequent conviction for theft of a motor vehicle will require you to pay a $1,000 penalty, and you will lose your driver’s license for ten years.

Diversion Programs for a Highland Park Theft Offense. There are two programs that may be utilized in the context of a Highland Park theft offense. Both are limited to first time offenders who have never secured a diversion previously. When the charge is a disorderly persons offense, a violation customarily heard in Highland Park Municipal Court, the available program is Conditional Dismissal. When someone is facing a third degree or fourth degree crime at the Middlesex County Superior Court in New Brunswick, the program is Pretrial Intervention.

Highland Park Theft Offense Defense Attorney

If you were arrested and charged with a theft offense in Highland Park, don’t risk you future by selecting an defense attorney who is a jack of all trades or inexperienced. Hire a lawyer who many years of experience successfully defending charges in Highland Park Municipal Court and/or at the Middlesex County Superior Court. The attorneys at our law firm, the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, have this level of knowledge and skill. To speak to one of the lawyers in a free consultation anytime 24/7, contact us at 732-246-7126.

Related Highland Park Legal Resource Pages & Posts

Highland Park NJ Shoplifting Lawyer

Criminal Attorney in Highland Park New Jersey