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Laws about Gum tree and Stolen Goods that you need to be aware of

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The world of private online sales is increasing across the world, and the scenario is no different in Australia. Gumtree is one of the most popular online websites for selling and buying. However, recently criminals are using this site to sell off illegal goods for money. When you buy anything from this site, are you sure that the item you buy isn’t a stolen good and in case you do land up with a stolen good what are the legal consequences will you face in Perth, Australia?

What do the laws of the land say?

The terms and conditions on the Gumtree website strictly lay down that illegal sale are not permitted on its site, and so if a shady transaction has taken place and the law gets to know about it, you will be in a tense and tricky situation. The Criminal Code of the land has laid down that the possession of an illegal good or product is subject to legal consequences. However, the results you face depend upon from where the good came from and how it came into your possession.

Actual knowledge versus reasonable suspicion

Solicitors Perth firms state that having limited knowledge is a hazardous thing. There are two options you are left with real information and reasonable doubt. In case of the latter, you are not sure that the goods lawfully belonged to the seller. Here, you have to analyze by taking one step back. You need to examine the circumstances, and if you believe that the goods sold to you is lawfully not theirs, you have reasonable suspicion. If you have actual information and knowledge about this, of course, it takes you one step ahead. You are aware that the seller for the property or the good you bought unlawfully. It does not mean that you knew of the offense that was committed. You know the seller is not the legal owner of the goods.

The difference between the two is significant. In case, you do have actual knowledge that the seller bought the goods you were buying through illegal means and a crime was committed for the above, the case is, and you will be charged under criminal law for receiving this stolen property. This offense gives you a minimum penalty of imprisonment of 14 years, and judges at the District Court hear the case.

Now, if you have reasonable suspicion but have still purchased the stolen property or good, you will be charged with the possession of stolen property or illegal goods. Here, the maximum penalty you face is seven years of imprisonment if the case is in the District Court. If the case is in the Magistrate’s Court, you face a penalty of 2 years imprisonment with a fine.

Therefore, if you are buying anything from Gumtree, ensure you check the certificate of purchase. Too little knowledge is terrible, however having proper information and awareness will help you stay protected under law when it comes to purchasing stolen goods and property.

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