General Laws of Massachusetts - Chapter 266 Crimes Against Property - Section 108 Vessel; destruction to injure or defraud owner or insurer; punishment; restitution

Section 108. Whoever casts away, burns, sinks or otherwise destroys a ship or vessel, with intent to injure or defraud an owner thereof, or of any property laden on board the same, or an insurer of such ship, vessel or property, or of any part thereof, shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for not more than ten years or imprisonment in a jail for not more than two and one-half years.

A person found guilty of violating this section shall, in addition to any other punishment, be ordered to make restitution to the insurer or owner for any financial loss sustained as a result of the commission of the crime except as hereinafter provided. Restitution shall be imposed in addition to incarceration or fine. In the case of an indigent defendant, the court may determine that the interests of the victim and of justice would not be served by ordering such restitution. In such case, the court shall make specific written findings of the evidence presented which militated against the imposition of restitution.

The court shall, after conviction, conduct an evidentiary hearing to ascertain the extent of the damages or financial loss suffered as a result of the defendant’s crime and may then determine the amount and method of restitution. In so determining, the court shall consider the financial resources of the defendant and the burden restitution will impose on the defendant. The defendant’s present and future ability to make such restitution shall be considered.

A defendant ordered to make restitution may petition the court for remission from any payment of restitution or from any unpaid portion thereof. If the court finds that the payment of restitution due will impose an undue financial hardship on the defendant or his family, the court may grant remission from any payment of restitution or modify the time and method of payment.

If a defendant who is required to make restitution defaults in any payment of restitution or installment thereof, the court may hold him in contempt unless said defendant has made a good faith effort to make restitution. If the defendant has made such good faith effort, the court may, upon motion of the defendant, modify the order requiring restitution by:

(a) providing for additional time to make any payment in restitution;

(b) reducing the amount of any payment in restitution or installment thereof;

(c) granting a remission from any payment of restitution or part thereof.

Restitution shall not be authorized to a party whom the court determines to be aggrieved, without such party’s consent.

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Last modified: September 11, 2015