What Is Theft by Deception under New Jersey Laws

In New Jersey, theft and property crimes are not all treated the same. The exact charge that a person might face will depend on the specifics of the particular situation. Therefore, it is important for people to understand the specific criminal charges they face when they are accused of theft and property crimes.

One type of theft crime in New Jersey is theft by deception. While this blog post will provide general information about the crime of theft by deception, people facing this charge may want to consult with an attorney for specific legal advice.

What is Theft By Deception in New Jersey?

Under section 2C:20-4 of the New Jersey Code of Criminal Justice, a theft by deception occurs in three situations. In each of these situations, the accused must have obtained the property of another through the use of purposeful deception.

The statute states that this does not include exaggeration or puffery that is not likely to deceive ordinary members of the group that the alleged victim belongs to.

However, under this section, deception occurs when you purposefully keep another person from learning some information that would affect the other person’s decisions about a particular transaction or situation. Deception also occurs under this section when you fail to correct or create a false impression about a situation that you know is deceiving a person that you are in a fiduciary relationship with.

Finally, theft by deception can occur if you reinforce or create a false impression in another person about your intentions, an item’s value or about the law. If your intention was to carry out some promise, deception cannot be inferred, under this section, just because you failed to perform. Some other evidence of deception is needed.

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