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Possession of Switchblades, Daggers, Stilettos, Billy Clubs, Blackjacks and Brass Knuckles Are Against the Law in New Jersey

A New Jersey statute prohibits an individual from “knowingly” possessing certain weapons including a gravity knife, switchblade knife, dagger, dirk, stiletto, billy, blackjack, and metal or brass knuckle “without any explainable lawful purpose”. A violation of this statute is a crime of the fourth degree.

Embedded in the law is a presumption that the enumerated weapons are possessed for an unlawful purpose. The statute, however, allows an accused to come forward with an explanation of a lawful purpose. Thus, if a defendant, who has been charged with a violation of this statute can show that there was an explainable lawful purpose associated with his possession of a specified weapon, the burden returns to the government to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the possession of the weapon was for an unlawful purpose

In order to establish an explainable lawful purpose, “any” evidence or “very slight” evidence or “some” evidence will suffice. Moreover, the evidence can come “from whatever source” , including the government’s case.

If you have been charged with a weapons or gun offense in the state of New Jersey, the consequences of a criminal conviction can be significant. It is imperative that you engage a criminal defense lawyer immediately especially one who has long experiences with the criminal law. Frank T. Luciano has been a criminal defense lawyer in Bergen, Passaic and Hudson County for over 40 years. He is a longtime member of the National Association of Criminal Defense Attorneys (NACDL) and a lifetime member of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML). He has defended many individuals charged with weapons and gun crimes. You can assess Frank T. Luciano’s skills by visiting his Testimonials page on his website.

Our Client Testimonials

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"Mr. Luciano freed my mind of anxiety right from the start. A consummate professional. He explained all options on defense and guided me to the one I followed with excellent results. Best of all, he is reasonable. Relax and let his knowledge (the magic) work."


From a former client

"First thing I want to tell is that I thank God for giving me the opportunity to meet such a wonderful person like you and without question, the best lawyer in this world. I am very grateful for everything you did for me. I want to let you know that I'm doing good and if you ever think of coming to . . . for vacation don't forget to contact me. Thanks again Mr. Luciano and please say hello to that kind lady that answers the phone with pleasure every time I called."


From a former client with a First Degree Distribution Charge

"In my distraction focusing on my . . . trial, I failed to ask you how things went with . . . I watched and learned from you throughout that case and greatly admire the consummsate attorney that I hoped to emulate. I witnessed how very hard you worked and how you left no stone unturned. I hope the case worked out for you and your clients. If it did not (and I hope it did) it was not for lack of the effect on your part which was humbling."


From an adversary in a case where we ultimately returned a verdict of $2,069,000

"My family and I would like to thank you for all of your hard work on my case. I feel like I can live my life normally again and it feels awesome. You are truly a professional and wonderful attorney."


From a former client charged with a serious weapons offense

"At the time, I was mortified because, having only worked against you in the Prosecutor’s Office, I couldn’t picture being on the same side. Frank, I want to thank you for the pleasure of having worked with you over the past years. I have learned a great deal from you. Most importantly, I learned that cases were not always as black and white as I thought they were when I worked for the Prosecutor’s Office. You are a wonderful attorney who not only works hard, but also cares deeply about his clients. Frank, I think you are the best."


From a former investigator of a county prosecutor’s office and retired private investigator

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