Theft By Deception

What do these charges mean? What types of penalties am I facing? Will I lose my job? Can a lawyer even help me?

Those questions and more are likely swirling through your head following a theft by deception charge in New Jersey. And rightfully so, getting charged with any crime is a very scary and confusing thing. To begin, theft by deception in New Jersey is a crime that is governed by NJSA 2C:20-40. The crime is defined as: "A person is guilty of theft by deception if he purposefully obtains property of another by deception." The theft and the nature of the deception can greatly vary and each case is unique. Charity scams are a common example of this crime.

Like many crimes that involve money wrongly taken, New Jersey assigns punishments to a theft by deception charge based on the value of property involved-the higher the value, the more serious the charges and corresponding punishments. A theft by deception charge can range from a disorderly person offense (for transactions less than $200) to a second degree crime (for transactions over $75,000 or if other elements are met). Punishments attached a second, third or fourth degree convictions for theft by deception include:

  • Fines: For property worth between $200-500, fines can be up to $10,000; A third degree offense raises the fine to $15,000 and second degree fines can go as high as $150,000.
  • Jail time: jail time can range from 18 months to ten years depending on the degree
  • Probation
  • Community service
  • Criminal record: along with all the immediate penalties listed above, dealing with a criminal record could mean serious issues with everything from employment (current and future) to housing (a popular application question) to your ability to obtain a loan.

Just because you have been charged with theft by deception does not mean that you will be convicted of this serious charge. Because of the life-changing impact a conviction can have on your personal and professional life, working with an attorney is your best chance at limiting the impact of the charge against you. There are many viable defenses to a theft by deception charge. Get in touch with the Law Offices of Thomas Carroll Blauvelt today to discuss the details of your case further.

The Law Offices of Thomas Carroll Blauvelt

With 22 years of experience as a lawyer, Thomas Carroll Blauvelt knows how to fight for you. Give the Law Offices of Thomas Carroll Blauvelt a call today for a free consultation to discuss the circumstances of your New Jersey theft by deception charge. I understand that this is a difficult time for you and your family and the day you hire me is the day that you can stop worrying about the details of your case and let me handle them. I always explain your case to you in plain English and your first consultation is always free. Let me take care of your legal defense, give me a call today!