In 2001, the Washington Legislature created the Criminal Profiteering Act under RCW 9A.82. At the time, the Legislature believed stricter laws were necessary to preserve the public peace, health, or safety, or support of the state government and its existing public institutions. Trafficking In Stolen Property laws were passed along with Criminal Profiteering, Leading Organized Crime, Bribery, Perjury and a host of other crimes.
Prosecutors and judges consider a number of issues in Trafficking In Stolen Property cases. Ultimately, the consequences for these charges are based on the value of the item. Coincidentally, there are two degrees of Trafficking in Stolen Property charges ranging from Class B felonies to Class C felonies:
Trafficking in Stolen Property in the First Degree RCW 9A.82.050
A person who knowingly initiates, organizes, plans, finances, directs, manages, or supervises the theft of property for sale to others, or who knowingly traffics in stolen property, is guilty of Trafficking in Stolen Property in the First Degree. This crime is a class B Felony punishable up to 10 years prison and a $20,000.00 fine.
Trafficking in Stolen Property in the Second Degree RCW 9A.82.055
A person who recklessly traffics in stolen property is guilty of Trafficking in Stolen Property in the Second Degree. This crime is a Class C Felony punishable up to 5 years prison and a $10,000.00 fine.
Fortunately, attorney Alexander Ransom is very experienced at litigating the procedural and substantive defenses for Trafficking In Stolen Property charges. For example, it is a sufficient defense that the property or service was appropriated openly and avowedly under a claim of title made in good faith, even though the claim was later found untenable (untrue). Other defenses include accident, lack of intent, voluntary intoxication, lack of evidence, diminished capacity, mutual combat, etc. Alexander thoroughly investigates cases and contacts witnesses to get their version of events.
Dismissals Through Compromise of Misdemeanor
In some cases, Alexander has succeeded in dismissing Trafficking In Stolen Property cases through Compromises of Misdemeanor (hyperlink) under RCW 10.22. This resolution allows dismissal of the charges if the defendant pays for the damages to the property and the victim signs a declaration stating they were paid and do not want the defendant prosecuted. For more information, please read Alexander’s Legal Guide titled, “DISMISSING PROPERTY CASES: THE COMPROMISE OF MISDEMEANOR.” (please hyperlink to aforementioned Legal Guide)
In other cases, Alexander has gone to jury trial and/or received favorable outcomes in the form of dismissals. Please review Alexander’s “Not Guilty” verdicts (please hyperlink to “Not Guilty Verdicts” page and Dismissals involving Trafficking In Stolen Property charges (please hyperlink to “Dismissals” page).
If you or someone you care about faces Trafficking in Stolen Property crimes in Skagit County or Whatcom County, call attorney Alexander Ransom today for a free, no-pressure case evaluation. Alexander has a reputation in the legal community as an aggressive, effective and experienced criminal defense attorney. He is here to assist you through these difficult times.