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Promoting Gambling

Union NJ Promoting Gambling Defense Attorney

If you were arrested for promoting gambling anywhere in Union County NJ and are looking for an attorney to defend you at the Superior Court in Elizabeth, our highly experienced criminal defense firm has the skills you need. Here at The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, our lawyers have been defending the offense of promoting gambling for over 100 years combined, with several possessing extensive experience serving as prosecutors as well. Whether you were initial charged in Union Township, Linden, Elizabeth, Plainfield, Hillside or another municipality in Union County, we have the skills you need to defend this charge. Contact our Union NJ Law Office for immediate assistance from one of the attorneys on our staff.

Charged With Promoting Gambling in Union County New Jersey

The promotion of gambling is a crime under N.J.S.A. 2C:37-2 of the NJ Criminal Code. This statute is written broadly to encompass as many gambling offenses as possible and, in fact, it often results in two or more separate categories of violation under this law. This can also make the determination of the grading or severity of the charge (e.g. third degree, or fourth degree crime) complicated. N.J.S.A. 2C:37-2 as follows:

A person is guilty of promoting gambling when he knowingly: (1) Accepts or receives money or other property, pursuant to an agreement or understanding with any person whereby he participates or will participate in the proceeds of gambling activity; or (2) Engages in conduct, which materially aids any form of gambling activity.  Such conduct includes but is not limited to conduct directed toward the creation or establishment of the particular game, contest, scheme, device or activity involved, toward the acquisition or maintenance of premises, paraphernalia, equipment or apparatus therefor, toward the solicitation or inducement of person to participate therein, toward the actual conduct of the playing phases thereof, toward the arrangement of any of its financial or recording phases, or toward any other phase of its operation.

Note that this statute does not draw within it people who are merely players.  A person ordinarily must have a discernible benefit from the game in order to be prosecuted for promotion of gambling. Therefore, a person who merely takes money from another to place a bet at a racetrack will not be guilty under this statute, because they are not being paid out of the illegal operation.  They make no money on placing the bet, whereas someone who is bookmaking or running an illegal lottery presumably does obtain a pecuniary or other proprietary benefit from the operation.  It is possible, however, that a player may become engaged later in the promotion of gambling. For example, a person with a winning lottery ticket, the value of which has not been determined, can become involved in promotion of gambling if they later sell that ticket.

Material Elements Of The Offense Of Promoting Gambling

As stated above, promoting gambling and materially aiding gambling activity are treated as two separate offenses with two distinct sets of material elements.  The state must prove four material elements for the promotion of gambling.  First, it must be proved that the defendant accepted or received money or other property.  Second, this property or money was to be used as part of the staking or risking something of value upon a contest or future contingent event.  Third, the defendant was to receive something out of the proceeds of the gambling activity other than personal winnings.  Fourth, the defendant knew that the money was received for the purposes of gambling and that he was to be paid out of the gambling proceeds.

As for materially aiding gambling activity, there are only three material elements that the State must prove.  Importantly, the state need not prove that the defendant received any compensation for a conviction for materially aiding gambling activity.  The state must simply prove the existence of a gambling activity, that the defendant was engaged in conduct that aided this gambling activity and that the defendant acted knowingly.

Penalties & Grading Of Crime

Promoting gambling is a third degree crime if the accused: (1) is engaged in bookmaking and receives or accepts in any one day more than five bets totaling more than one thousand dollars in value; (2) operates a lottery and receives money or written records from a person other than a player, or if they receive more than one hundred dollars for any one day of play. A individual convicted of promoting gambling in the third degree faces up to five (5) years in prison and a fine of up to $35,000.

It is a crime of the fourth degree if a person is engaging in bookmaking to the extent that he or she has received or accepted three or more bets in any two week period.  In addition to all the dispositions which are available to the court for a person who has been convicted of a fourth degree crime (i.e. imprisonment for up to 18 months and a fine of up to $10,000), the court has available for this offense the authority to impose a fine of not more than $25,000.  This fourth degree offense only applies to a conviction under the first type of promoting a gambling offense which requires the state to prove that the defendant participated or was to participate in the proceeds of a gambling activity.

Elizabeth NJ Promoting Gambling Lawyer

As you can see from our discussion, you are exposed to serious penalties if it is found that you promoted gambling anywhere in Union County, including Roselle Park, Cranford, Westfield, Clark or Roselle. You can be sent to state prison for literally years and fined tens of thousands of dollars. Hiring a skilled lawyer is clearly a necessity if you were charged with conspiracy to promote gambling or promoting gambling directly. At our firm, The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, the attorneys on our defense team includes prosecutors who have worked in the economic crimes unit on gambling cases, and know what it takes to avoid a conviction. So if you or someone you love has been charged with promotion of gambling in Union County, contact us at 908-272-1700 to speak to a lawyer immediately in a free consultation.