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What are the elements of first-degree arson in New York?

| Jan 20, 2016 | Theft & Property Crimes |

Individuals in New York City may have heard of the crime of arson, but may not know exactly what it means. In fact, whether an incident can be considered arson depends on the specific facts of the situation, and how the law applies to those facts. Moreover, there are various degrees of arson an individual in New York can be accused of. Today, we are going to look at first-degree arson.

In New York, an individual can be accused of first-degree arson if that person allegedly causes intentional damage to a building by causing a fire or an explosion. That fire or explosion must have been caused by an “incendiary device” that has been propelled or put in or nearby the building in question. Also, arson could rise to the first-degree level if the fire or explosion seriously injured another individual besides the individual allegedly committing the arson, or if it is done with the intention of taking advantage of some sort of financial profit and a second individual is inside the building in question at the time. New York law has a specific definition of what is considered to be an “incendiary device.”

Arson is a serious crime with the potential for long-lasting consequences. Jail time and fines are only the beginning for those accused of arson in New York. Therefore, it is imperative that those in New York accused of arson wage a strong defense.

In New York, individuals accused of arson charges may be able to work with an attorney to craft a sound defense. Evidence can be questioned and arguments can be raised in the defendant’s favor. In the end, a defendant should do whatever it takes to counter a charge of arson. Doing so could help that individual defeat such criminal charges and preserve the person’s freedoms and rights.

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