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Zoey_ JD
Zoey_ JD, JustAnswer Criminal Law Mentor
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 16538
Experience:  Admitted to NYS Criminal defense bar in 1989. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
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charged with violation of restraining order due to possesion

Customer Question

charged with violation of restraining order due to possesion in home of firearms 2c:39-3j and 3 counts of 2C:39-7 (B).. what are the possable penalties and any recomandations
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 2 years ago.
Hello,

The violation of 2C:39-3j is a crime of the 3rd degree in New Jersey. You can see that statute here. The more serious offense is the 2C:39-7(b) which is the possession of the weapons in violation of the order of protection. It carries a mandatory minimum of 5 years of prison with no parole. (See link)

This is pretty much a strict liability offense. That is, if you've got them and you shouldn't have them, there's just not much wiggle room in the statute to mount a defense. That doesn't of course mean that you shouldn't try. Depending upon where the guns and ammuniton were found, if it's at all conceivable that you didn't know they were there, that could give your lawyer something to work with.

In any case, if you wanted to fight these charges somehow or if you hope to bargain these down to something that can keep you out of jail, you're going to need a lawyer to try and negotiate that for you. If you're not clear on where to find a criminal lawyer, contact the New Jersey Bar Association's Lawyer referral service and they will refer you to one. If you can't afford an attorney just plead not guilty at your arraingment when the judge first asks you how you plead, and tell him you need to have a public attorney appointed because you cannot afford private counsel.
Zoey_ JD, JustAnswer Criminal Law Mentor
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 16538
Experience: Admitted to NYS Criminal defense bar in 1989. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
Zoey_ JD and 9 other Criminal Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

thank you.....does the fact that the person that filed the restraining order is deceased prior to the filing of these charges?

Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 2 years ago.

Hi,

The problem is that if it was a domestic violence order of protection, because of the Violence Against Women Act and under the Lautenberg Amendment, you are barred for life from owning, possessing or exercising control over a firearm under Federal law. If you lose your Federal gun rights, even if NJ were to restore your rights, you would still not be allowed to exercise them.

If it was not a DV offense, then the fact that the person is dead should make a huge difference. If it was, however, while it shows mitigating circumstances and would be a bargaining tool for your lawyer, it's unlikely to provide a full defense because fo the above.

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