Craigslist is a popular website, used by many New Jersey residents, for buying and selling merchandise on classified ads. However, with large amounts of potential money and property changing hands, sometimes things to do not go to plan. In one such recent case, a Secaucus woman who was looking to sell her car on the Internet came away empty-handed when an interested “buyer” made off with her 1997 Tahoe at a town shopping center, according to police.
The 32-year-old Secaucus resident had her Craigslist ad answered and decided to meet the would-be-buyer at night in the popular shopping center off Paterson Plank Road in the heart of town.
The good news was the buyer seemed to really like the truck and decided he couldn’t leave without it. The bad news for the seller was he drove the truck away without paying for it first. According to police, the vehicle was later recovered in Newark – the notorious auto theft capital.
New Jersey has multiple criminal statutes that apply to “auto theft” and it often depends on the circumstances surrounding the allegations. Under 2C:20-10 you can be charged with Joyriding or Unauthorized Use of a Motor Vehicle if you exercise control over the vehicle with the purpose to temporarily withhold the car from owner without the owner’s consent. If your intention is to permanently without the vehicle from the owner, then you will be charged under 2C:20-3 for Theft by Unlawful Taking. All of these charges are serious and often punishable by state prison incarceration. Therefore, it is always highly recommended that you consult with an experienced New Jersey theft attorney who is familiar with the court system before making any decisions. At Proetta & Oliver, we offer free consultations for perspective clients.