In New Jersey, there is a burglary every 20 minutes; there is a theft every 5 minutes, and a motor vehicle is stolen every 46 minutes.1
There are many criminal charges that are included under the definition for theft offense. And while any criminal conviction goes on your record, a theft conviction also adds the stigma for being dishonest to your reputation. This criminal charge can negatively impact your ability to apply for a job, apply for credit cards, car loans and home mortgages, and can also appear on background checks.
Aggressive Representation by a Board-Certified Attorney
If you are charged with a criminal theft offense in New Jersey, you need an experienced criminal defense attorney. Any attorney can say they are “aggressive.” But only the NJ Supreme Court recognizes certified trial attorneys who have established the required level of competence in their field of law. Although many practicing trial attorneys now advertise online, only attorneys certified by the New Jersey Supreme Court are entitled to use the designation “Certified by the Supreme Court of New Jersey as a Criminal Trial Attorney”.
If you are charged with a criminal theft offense in New Jersey, you need an experienced criminal defense attorney. Howard P. Lesnik, Esq., is a board-certified criminal trial attorney by the New Jersey Supreme Court and handles these criminal charges throughout the State on a regular basis. I am board-certified in criminal trial law, including theft offenses such as:
- Theft by Deception
- Theft of Services
- Theft from a Person
- Theft by Extortion
- Identity Theft
- Motor Vehicle Theft
- Credit Card Theft & Forgery
- Bad Checks
- Insurance Fraud
- Prescription Fraud & Forgery
- Receiving Stolen Property
- Falsifying Documents
The penalties for all these offenses can be serious. A second-degree theft carries a sentence of 5 to 10 years in jail and a fine of $150,000. A third-degree theft carries a sentence of 3 to 5 years in jail and a $15,000 fine. A fourth-degree theft carries up to 18 months in jail, and a $10,000 fine. A municipal court case for theft or shoplifting carries 6 months in jail and a $1,000 fine.
Pro-tip: Don’t plead guilty to a shoplifting offense in municipal court just to pay a fine and to get rid of your charges. Not only will the shoplifting conviction be on your record – but subsequent shoplifting offenses can carry mandatory 6 months in jail – even in municipal court!
Contact My Office Immediately
I am a New Jersey criminal trial attorney board certified by the NJ Supreme Court. New Jersey’s theft offense laws are extremely complex and carry significant consequences. If you or a family member were arrested for a theft offense in New Jersey, contact me immediately so I can review your case and the evidence against you and advise you as to all possible defenses to make sure that you are properly represented. In many cases and circumstances charges can be downgraded or dismissed depending on the facts of your case. Please contact me now by email, by phoning 908.264.7701, or by completing the form to the right to schedule your complimentary 30-minute strategy session.
1 Source: https://www.njsp.org/ucr/2016/pdf/2016a_sect_2.pdf