IS DEALING INTO STOLEN PROPERTY CONSIDERED A CRIME IN INDIA?
In order to discourage theft, acceptance of stolen property and dealing with it has been made a punishable under IPC 1860. Section 411 defines dishonestly receiving stolen property.
It states that, “whoever dishonestly receives or retains any stolen property, knowing or having reason to believe the same to be stolen property, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description or a term which may extend to 3 years or with fine or with both.
1. That the property in question was stolen property;
2. That it was dishonestly received or retained;
3. The accused knew or had reason to believe that the property was stolen property.
Detailed analysis of Ingredients:
1. That property in question was stolen property.
Stolen property has been defined under section 410 of IPC. It states that where the possession of property has been transferred by theft or extortion or by robbery or property has been subject to, either criminal misappropriation or criminal breach of trust, is designated as stolen property, whether such offense are committed within or without India.
2. Dishonestly Receiving or retaining stolen property:
The section does not deal with mere receiving of property but clearly indicates the necessity of dishonest intention. It is necessary for the prosecution to establish that accused has either dishonestly received or retained the stolen property.
3. Receiving or retaining stolen property with knowledge.
The essence of receiving stolen property consists in the receipt or retention of property with full knowledge or having reason to believe at the time of receipt, that the property was obtained in one of ways specified in S.410. The word “believe” is much stronger word than “suspect” and it involves the necessity of showing that the circumstances were such that a reasonable man must have felt convinced in his mind that the property with which he was dealing must be a stolen property.
The fifth law commission has recommended to bring cheating also under the scope of section 410. Secondly, it suggested to make it criminally liable to receive stolen property from child or in same person even though such persons are not liable under IPC due to general exceptions.