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Union County NJ Criminal Defense Lawyers

Over 200 Years Combined Experience

Former County & Municipal Prosecutors




Theft by Extortion

Westfield NJ Theft Attorneys

If you were charged with theft by extortion in Union County, our attorneys have the skills required to effectively represent you. Here are The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, we possess over 100 years of combined experience defending theft related charges like the one you are facing. Make no mistake about it, the stakes are high for you as theft by extortion is a second degree crime that can land you in jail/prison for as much as ten years. This is why it is so crucial to secure representation from an attorney with the skill to provide the best opportunity to escape life changing penalties. To speak to a lawyer about the offense that was filed against you in Westfield, Elizabeth, Hillside, Springfield, Union or another town in the area, contact our Union Township Office immediately, We can be reached 24/7 at 908-272-1700 for free consultations.

Charged With Theft by Extortion

Under N.J.S.A. 2C:20-5, theft by extortion is a serious offense.  A person commits theft by extortion when a person purposely and unlawfully obtains the property of another by extortion.  More specifically, the statute defines seven ways in which a person may extort another.  A person extorts another if:

  1. They threaten to to inflict bodily injury on or physically confine or restrain anyone or commit any other criminal offense;
  2. They threaten to accuse anyone of an offense or cause charges of an offense to be instituted against any person;
  3. They threaten to expose or publicize any secret or any asserted fact, whether true or false, tending to subject any person to hatred, contempt or ridicule, or to impair his credit or business repute;
  4. They threaten to take or withhold action as an official, or cause an official to take or withhold action;
  5. They threaten to bring about or continue a strike, boycott or other collective action, if they property is not demanded or received for the benefit of the group in whose interest the actor purports to act;
  6. They threaten to testify or provide information or withhold testimony or information with respect to another’s legal claim or defense; or
  7. They threaten to inflict any other harm which would not substantially benefit the actor but which is calculated to materially harm another person.

The four material elements that the Union County Prosecutor’s Office must establish in order to prove a theft by extortion offense are as follows.  First, the state must show that the Defendant obtained the property of another.  Second, it must be shown that the defendant obtained the property as a consequence of one of the aforementioned types of conduct.  Thirdly, it must be shown that the Defendant purposely made the threat in order to obtain the property of another.  Lastly, it must be shown that the Defendant actually did unlawfully obtain the property.

Grading, Penalties & Other Sentencing Considerations

Theft by Extortion is always a crime of the Second Degree, making it a very serious offense. Crimes of the Second Degree carry a presumption of incarceration, meaning that even first offenders are likely to face a term of imprisonment. A conviction for a crime of the Second Degree carries with it a term of imprisonment between 5 and 10 years and a fine of up to $150,000. A conviction for Theft by Extortion is even more serious because it is one of the offenses included in the No Early Release Act (NERA). Although NERA originally only applied to violent crimes, it was expanded in 2001 to include a variety of other indictable offenses (felonies). When NERA applies to the crime for which the Defendant was convicted, he or she will not be eligible for parole until at least 85% of their term of imprisonment has been fulfilled. For a second degree offense, this could mean that the Defendant would be ineligible for parole for up to 8.5 years.

Rahway NJ Theft Lawyer

Needless to say,  you should not attempt to face something of this magnitude alone without a savvy attorney at your side. Failure to successfully defend an alleged theft of this nature in Springfield, Union Township, Hillside or another municipality results in a recommended period of incarceration that reach a decade. The lawyers at The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall have over 100 years of collective experience defending against criminal charges including theft by extortion. A lawyer on our team stands ready to assist you in defending your Elizabeth NJ theft charges.  Call our office in Union Township now at 908-272-1700 to speak to a lawyer with the skills to thoroughly defend you.