PREMIUM LEGAL RESOURCES
ASK A LAWYER
RECEIVER OF STOLEN GOODS
By statutory provision the receiver of stolen goods knowing them to have been stolen may be punished as the principal in perhaps all the United States. To make this offence complete, the goods received must have been stolen, and the receiver must know that fact.
It is almost always difficult to prove guilty knowledge; and that must in general be collected from circumstances. If such circumstances are proved which to a person of common understanding and prudence and situated as the prisoner was, must have satisfied him that they were stolen, this is sufficient. For example, the receipt of watches, jewelry, large quantities of money, bundles of clothes of various kinds, or personal property of any sort, to a considerable value, from boys or persons destitute of property, and with-out any lawful means of acquiring them and specially if bought at untimely hours, the mind can arrive at no other conclusion than that they were stolen. This is further confirmed if they have been bought at an undervalue, concealed, the marks defaced, and falsehood resorted to in accounting for the possession of them.At common law receiving, stolen goods, knowing them to have been stolen, is a misdemeanor.