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Federal Thefts

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Bloomberg Law


Interstate Transportation of Stolen Goods This offense is defined as the transportation in interstate or foreign commerce of any goods, wares, merchandise, securities, or money, knowing the same to have been stolen, converted, or taken by fraud.

1. Transportation This requirement is met very easily because interstate commerce has been expanded to such an extent that almost any distribution of anything is considered to be in interstate commerce.
Goods, Wares, or Money This element provides for the application of this statute only in regards to tangible personal property. Non-tangible things of value such as copyrights are not covered under this offense.
Known to be Stolen It must be shown that one knew or reasonably should have known that the goods were stolen. Goods are considered stolen if they are the object of another person’s theft.

B. Wire and Mail Fraud These offenses are committed through the transmission by wire or mail of false pretenses in furtherance of any scheme to defraud or obtain property for one’s own enrichment. Another feature of this offense is that the scheme does not necessarily have to work and acquisition of property is not required.
Transmission by Wire or Mail This element has evolved into one of form only. Most courts only require a formal declaration that either phones or the mail was used by the accused in commission of the scheme. Some courts do not require any evidence at all as to their use.
False Pretenses
See, Ch. 9, III.


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