Can I profit from my crimes in North Carolina?

Can you profit from your crime in North Carolina? What happens if you commit a crime, and then attempt to profit from it either from collecting on life insurance – for instance, you’ve killed someone and want to collect on the insurance or inheritance – or indirectly.

North Carolina, like all states, prevents people from both profiting from a crime directly and indirectly.

In addition, North Carolina has a civil asset forfeiture provision which prevents people from profiting from other kinds of criminal activity – for instance the sale of drugs. A civil asset forfeiture action involves the seizure of the property and requires a person who wishes to recover that property to identify that the property was not part of the illegal gains of criminal activity.

Here’s the statute:

N.C.G.S. 14-2.3. Forfeiture of gain acquired through criminal activity.

(a) Except as is otherwise provided in Article 3 of Chapter 31A, in the case of any violation of Article 13A of Chapter 14, or a general statute constituting a felony other than a non-willful homicide, any money or other property or interest in property acquired thereby shall be forfeited to the State of North Carolina, including any profits, gain, remuneration, or compensation directly or indirectly collected by or accruing to any offender.

(b) An action to recover such property shall be brought by either a District Attorney or the Attorney General pursuant to G.S. 1-532. The action must be brought within three years from the date of the conviction for the offense.

(c) Nothing in this section shall be construed to require forfeiture of any money or property recovered by law-enforcement officers pursuant to the investigation of an offense when the money or property is readily identifiable by the owner or guardian of the property or is traceable to him.

Damon Chetson

Damon Chetson is a Board Certified Specialist in State and Federal Criminal Law. He represents people charged with serious and minor offenses in Raleigh, Wake County, and the Eastern District of North Carolina. Call (919) 352-9411.