Prosecution for receiving stolen goods. Defendant moved to dismiss the indictment. The Superior Court, New Castle County, Richards, P. J., held that indictment which failed to allege the name of the owner of the goods was insufficient.
[49 Del. 248] Indictment for receiving stolen goods in violation of Title 11, Sec. 791 of the Delaware Code of 1953.
Argument on motion to dismiss the indictment on the grounds that it does not state facts sufficient to constitute an offense against the State of Delaware; and that it fails to plainly and fully inform the defendant of the nature and cause of the accusation against him.
In support of defendant's motion it is contended that the indictment fails to contain an allegation that the defendant intended at the time of receiving the goods to deprive the true owner of his property in the goods; that it fails to contain an allegation that the defendant knew at the time of receiving the goods specified in the indictment that they were stolen goods; and that it fails to name the owner of the goods.
The material part of the indictment is in this language:
‘ Boyd Bean on the twenty-fifth day of July, 1954, did receive stolen goods which were the subject of larceny to the value of more than One Hundred Dollars, towit:
a platinum bracelet set with forty-five diamonds, said bracelet having been
stolen and the said Boyd Bean knowing that the said bracelet had been
Keil & Keil, John M. Bader and Harold Shaffer, Wilmington, for defendant in support of the motion.
Herbert L. Cobin, Chief Deputy Atty. Gen., and Wilfred J. Smith, Jr., Deputy Atty. Gen., for the State.
RICHARDS, President Judge.
The material part of the indictment above referred to is substantially in the words of the statute providing that one who receives stolen goods is guilty of a felony and fixing the punishment therefor.
The sufficiency of an indictment for a statutory offense, and the right of the accused to be fully informed of the offense with [49 Del. 249] which he is charged with having committed in order that he may be able to prepare his defense, or plead a conviction or acquittal as a bar to a later prosecution for the same offense, was considered and determined by me in the recent case of State v. Allen, Del.Super., 112 A.2d 40. Further discussion of that question is unnecessary.
The crimes of larceny and of receiving stolen goods, knowing them to have been stolen, are separate and distinct offenses. Receiving stolen goods has been referred to as a sort of secondary crime based upon the prior commission of the primary crime of larceny. The elements of larceny are not elements of the crime of receiving stolen goods. In larceny it must appear that the defendant feloniously took the personal property of another with the intention to convert it to his own use and thus deprive the owner of its use. The purpose for which it was taken, however, may appear from all the facts and circumstances of the case. The crime of receiving stolen goods consists of either buying or receiving personal property with knowledge that it has been stolen. The gist of the offense is the purchase or receipt of the stolen goods with knowledge that they have been stolen. State v. Brady, 237 N.C. 675, 75 S.E.2d 791; People v. Smith, 26 Cal.2d 854, 161 P.2d 941;
State v. Wright, 2 Pennewill 228,45 A. 395;
State v. Freedman, 3 Pennewill 403,53 A. 356; State v. Malvarosa, 7 Boyce 451, 108 A. 95.
The indictment charges the defendant with the commission of a felony in violation of Title 11, Sec. 791 of the Code of 1953, which provides that any one who receives goods to the value of $100 or more, which have been stolen, knowing the same to have been stolen is guilty of a felony. The statute makes no mention of the intention of the person who receives
the stolen goods and I can find no reason why it should appear in the indictment. It is not necessary in order to inform the defendant of the offense ...