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State of New Jersey v. James J. Sanocki

May 25, 2012

STATE OF NEW JERSEY, PLAINTIFF-RESPONDENT,
v.
JAMES J. SANOCKI, DEFENDANT-APPELLANT.



On appeal from the Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division, Hunterdon County, Indictment No. 07-06-00058.

Per curiam.

NOT FOR PUBLICATION WITHOUT THE APPROVAL OF THE APPELLATE DIVISION

Argued May 16, 2012

Before Judges Fuentes, Graves, and J. N. Harris.

Claiming that his constitutional right to a speedy trial was violated, defendant James J. Sanocki appeals the denial of his motion to dismiss the indictment. We affirm.

After the Law Division found no basis to dismiss the indictment, Sanocki pled guilty to second-degree receiving stolen property, N.J.S.A. 2C:20-7; third-degree theft, N.J.S.A. 2C:20-3; and third-degree conspiracy to promote or facilitate theft by deception, N.J.S.A. 2C:5-2 and N.J.S.A. 2C:20-4(a). Sanocki was sentenced to an aggregate term of five years imprisonment. This appeal followed.

On appeal, Sanocki raises a single argument:

POINT I: DEFENDANT'S MOTION TO DISMISS THE INDICTMENT SHOULD HAVE BEEN GRANTED BECAUSE THE FIVE-YEAR DELAY BETWEEN HIS ARREST AND INDICTMENT DEPRIVED HIM OF HIS SIXTH AMENDMENT RIGHT TO A SPEEDY TRIAL.

Our review of the record does not reveal a constitutional violation, and the Law Division's disposition of Sanocki's speedy trial motion was proper.

I.

On August 8, 2002, state investigators executed search warrants of Sanocki's Ewing and Frenchtown residences. The search warrants were executed in connection with an investigation begun by authorities in Kentucky of a multi-state theft ring operating out of Louisville. The investigation suggested that stolen vehicles and equipment were transported to New Jersey and received by Sanocki. The investigation further revealed that Sanocki may have sold some of the stolen property through an internet auction site. Numerous suspected stolen items were seized, including motorcycle components, an all-terrain vehicle, and a tractor. Pursuant to the search warrants, authorities also seized Sanocki's personal computer.

That same day, Sanocki was arrested and charged in two complaints with fencing, N.J.S.A. 2C:20-7.1(b), and receiving stolen property, N.J.S.A. 2C:20-7. Following his arrest, Sanocki waived his Miranda*fn1 rights and gave two statements to investigators. According to the State, in a "lengthy audiotaped statement and a four-page hand-written statement, [Sanocki] made incriminating admissions regarding his involvement in the theft ring."

On August 16, 2002, Sanocki entered a plea of not guilty and was released on his own recognizance. The matter was listed for an early disposition conference (EDC) to be held on September 27, 2002. However, on September 10, 2002, the State requested that "the matter be removed from the EDC list pending further investigation."

The evidence obtained by the State during the investigation revealed, among other things, that "the stolen items linked to the defendant from the Kentucky theft ring were stolen at separate times from 25 separate victims in Kentucky, Alabama and New Jersey," and that the total approximate value of those items was "in excess of $270,000." The State's investigation "involved dozens of interviews of victims and witnesses from several states . . . including Kentucky, Alabama, Florida, Pennsylvania, New York, Minnesota, Texas and ...


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