Receiving Stolen Property

Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 266 Section 60 makes it a crime to receive stolen property. This crime involves the following three elements, which must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt:
  1. The property was stolen. The government does not have to prove the identity of the person who stole the property.

  2. The defendant knew or believed that the property was stolen. This is an actual, subjective knowledge requirement. Therefore, it is not enough that a reasonable person would have known that the property was stolen. A negligent failure to ask whether the property was stolen is also insufficient. Some circumstances that could give rise to the inference of knowledge include: extremely low price, possession of several stolen items, failure to keep records in the course of business, and storage location.

  3. The defendant knowingly possessed, bought, or helped to conceal that property. To satisfy this element, the government only has to prove that the defendant somehow exercised control over the property.

If the defendant was not aware that the property was stolen when he or she received it, he or she can still be guilty of this crime if he or she later discovered that the property was stolen and decided to keep it. One can also still be guilty of this crime even if there was no intent to take any personal benefit from receiving the property. For example, if a defendant knowingly received the stolen goods for a friend, then he or she would still be guilty of this offense.

Massachusetts Theft Crimes Attorney

It is imperative to have a lawyer on your side whenever you are accused of a crime. An experienced Massachusetts theft crimes lawyer can help you to achieve a successful outcome in your receiving stolen property case. Robert J. Wheeler, Jr. is a Massachusetts criminal defense attorney with more than three decades of experience who will work aggressively to build your winning defense.

Law Office of Robert J. Wheeler, Jr. (617) 973 5858

If you have been charged with buying or receiving stolen goods or another Massachusetts criminal offense, call the Law Office of Robert J. Wheeler, Jr. today. Attorney Wheeler is truly one of the best criminal defense attorneys in our Commonwealth. You can reach his office (24 hours a day, 7 days a week) by calling (617) 973 5858 or by contacting him online. Attorney Wheeler offers free phone consultations.