Can you still be charged for cashing a stolen check even though they got their money back?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Can you still be charged for cashing a stolen check even though they got their money back?

I got cond into cashing a check that was stolen
but they got their money back from the bank.
Can I still be charged? I got ahold of the person
whos check it was and told him what
happened with his check and he said he wasnt
going to press any charges on me.

Asked on November 2, 2018 under Criminal Law, Nevada


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

Yes, you can be charged: repaying the victim does not make a crime not a crime, otherwise everyone who steals in any fashion (by fraud, by deception, by burglary, by robbery, etc.) would simply repay their victim and avoid punishment. Once a crime is committed, it was committed, regardless of what happened later.
That said:
1) It's only a crime if you had criminal intent. If you knew or logically should have known the check was stolen but cashed it anyway, that would be criminal; if you reasonably thought the check was not stolen (e.g. that someone had voluntarily endorsed it over to you; that the person who gave it to you had authority to write from that account; etc.) that is not a crime. 
2) Even if it was criminal, if the victim does not go and press charges, there is almost no chance that this will come to the authorities' attention or that you will be charged. They don't go actively looking for things like this.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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