HB-5843, As Passed House, November 28, 2012
HOUSE BILL NO. 5843
A bill to prohibit organized retail crime and to provide
penalties for that crime; to provide for forfeiture of and
restitution for stolen retail merchandise in certain circumstances;
to create the organized retail crime advisory board and to
prescribe its powers and duties; and to provide for the
administration of this act.
THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF MICHIGAN ENACT:
Sec. 1. This act shall be known and may be cited as the
"organized retail crime act".
Sec. 2. It is the intent of the legislature to protect the
public health, safety, and welfare of the citizens of the state by
recognizing the negative impact of persons who engage in planned,
organized, and methodical theft of retail merchandise for resale in
unregulated retail commerce, including, but not limited to,
medications, infant formula, and pharmaceutical items; the
potential use of the proceeds of the sale of that merchandise to
support other crimes and criminal enterprises and the nature,
extent, and impact of those activities upon commerce and public
safety; and to take appropriate actions to prevent and punish those
who engage in those activities.
Sec. 3. As used in this act:
(a) "Board" means the organized retail crime advisory board
created under section 6.
(b) "Department" means the department of state police.
(c) "Organized retail crime" means the theft of retail
merchandise from a retail merchant with the intent or purpose of
reselling, distributing, or otherwise reentering the retail
merchandise in commerce, including the transfer of the stolen
retail merchandise to another retail merchant or to any other
person personally, through the mail, or through any electronic
medium, including the internet, in exchange for anything of value.
(d) "Person" means an individual, sole proprietorship,
partnership, cooperative, association, corporation, limited
liability company, personal representative, receiver, trustee,
assignee, or other entity.
(e) "Retail merchant" means any person that is in the business
of selling retail merchandise at retail.
(f) "Retail merchandise" means any new article, product,
commodity, item, or component intended to be sold in retail
Sec. 4. (1) A person is guilty of organized retail crime when
that person, alone or in association with another person, does any
of the following:
(a) Knowingly commits an organized retail crime.
(b) Organizes, supervises, finances, or otherwise manages or
assists another person in committing an organized retail crime.
(c) Removes, destroys, deactivates, or knowingly evades any
component of an antishoplifting or inventory control device to
prevent the activation of that device or to facilitate another
person in committing an organized retail crime.
(d) Conspires with another person to commit an organized
(e) Receives, purchases, or possesses retail merchandise for
sale or resale knowing or believing the retail merchandise to be
stolen from a retail merchant.
(f) Uses any artifice, instrument, container, device, or other
article to facilitate the commission of an organized retail crime
(g) Knowingly causes a fire exit alarm to sound or otherwise
activate, or deactivates or prevents a fire exit alarm from
sounding, in the commission of an organized retail crime or to
facilitate the commission of an organized retail crime by another
(h) Knowingly purchases a wireless telecommunication device
using fraudulent credit, knowingly procures a wireless
telecommunications service agreement with the intent to defraud
another person or to breach that agreement, or uses another person
to obtain a wireless telecommunications service agreement with the
intent to defraud another person or to breach that agreement.
(2) Organized retail crime is a felony punishable by
imprisonment for not more than 5 years or a fine of $5,000.00, or
(3) If the true owner of stolen retail merchandise cannot be
identified, the retail merchandise, and any proceeds from the sale
or resale of that merchandise, is subject to forfeiture to the
state for use by the board in the performance of its duties. The
court shall order forfeiture of the retail merchandise in the
manner and upon terms and conditions as determined by the court to
(4) The court shall order a person who is found guilty of
organized retail crime to make restitution to any retail merchant
victim in the manner provided in the crime victim's rights act,
1985 PA 87, MCL 780.751 to 780.834, and to reimburse the
governmental entity for its expenses incurred as a result of the
violation of this act in the manner provided in section 1f of
chapter IX of the code of criminal procedure, 1927 PA 175, MCL
(5) It is not a defense to a charge under this section that
the property was not stolen, embezzled, or converted property at
the time of the violation if the property was explicitly
represented to the accused person as being stolen, embezzled, or
Sec. 5. This act does not prohibit a person from being charged
with, convicted of, or sentenced for any violation of law arising
out of the same criminal transaction that violates this act.
Sec. 6. (1) There is created within the department of state
police an organized retail crime advisory board. The board shall
consist of the following members:
(a) One member who is a county prosecuting attorney or an
assistant county prosecuting attorney.
(b) One member who is a representative of law enforcement.
(c) The state attorney general or his or her designated
(d) One member who is recommended by the Michigan retailers
(e) One member who is a member of the general public.
(f) The director of the department of state police or his or
her designated representative.
(2) All members of the board, other than the attorney general
and the director of the department of state police, shall be
appointed by the governor by and with the advice and consent of the
senate for terms of 4 years.
(3) A vacancy on the board shall be filled in the same manner
as the original appointment for the remainder of any unexpired
(4) The duties of the board shall be to develop a database of
organized retail crimes, to compile annual statistics on organized
retail crime acts, to recommend actions to be taken by the
department and law enforcement to further combat organized retail
crime, and to submit an annual report to the director of the
department on the effectiveness of this act in reducing organized
(5) The director of the department of state police or his or
her designee shall serve as chairperson of the board. The board
shall meet not less often than 4 times each year. Special meetings
may be called by the chairperson, or upon written request of not
fewer than 3 board members. Meetings shall be held at a location
designated by the chairperson.
(6) The board shall keep minutes of its proceedings. A record
of board action and business shall be made and maintained.
(7) The board members shall not be compensated for their
service but may be reimbursed for their actual and reasonable
(8) The board shall not retain a staff.
(9) The business performed by the board shall be conducted at
a public meeting of the board held in compliance with the open
meetings act, 1976 PA 267, MCL 15.261 to 15.275.
(10) A writing prepared, owned, used, in the possession of, or
retained by the board in the performance of an official function
shall be made available to the public in compliance with the
freedom of information act, 1976 PA 442, MCL 15.231 to 15.246.
Sec. 7. This act shall be administered by the director of the
Enacting section 1. This act takes effect January 1, 2013.