Things You Need To Know About Receipt of Stolen Property | Temecula, Murrieta & Riverside Criminal Defense Attorney
Have you ever wanted one of those high-end smartphones? You know, the ones that will practically do your taxes for you? Maybe your plan doesn't cover it, or it's always been too expensive, but when a casual acquaintance tells you he's got a model he'd be willing to part with for a promise and a song you take him up on it. Everything is going great, until the cops show up and you find out your great new gadget is stolen.
What's worse, you might hear the phrase " receipt of stolen property" being bandied about.
What is Receipt of Stolen Property?
Receipt of stolen property is actually a very specific crime, with a very long history. It first became a crime in England in the 1600s, where someone who knowingly accepted stolen goods was treated as an accessory to the theft itself. In the 1800s in America receipt of stolen goods was actually made its very own crime according to this source.
So what does it mean? According to California Penal Code 496, it means that you bought or received property that you knew or had reason to know that it was taken in some unlawful manner. Whether it's a TV stolen out of a warehouse or a high-end smartphones taken by a mugger, the crime is the same. If you knew or had reason to know it was stolen, then you are committing a crime by receiving that item.
What If You Didn't Know?
Generally speaking if you had no idea that the item in question was stolen then you can't be convicted of this crime. However some jurisdictions have slightly different language, where if someone reason to know something is stolen he or she can still be held responsible. If you find yourself embroiled in a case where you're being accused of receiving stolen property it's a good idea to get representation as soon as possible.
If you're in Temecula, Murrieta, Menifee, Wildomar, Lake Elsinore, Hemet, Perris, Banning, Corona or Riverside and you have questions then simply contact our law office today to get the help you need!