California Criminal Jury Instructions (CALCRIM) (2017)

1931. Possession of Blank Check: With Intent to Defraud

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1931.Possession of Blank Check: With Intent to Defraud (Pen.
Code, § 475(b))
The defendant is charged [in Count ] with possessing a (blank/
[or] unfinished) (check[,]/ [or] note[,]/ [or] money order[,]/ [or]
traveler’s check[,]/ [or] bank bill) with intent to defraud [in violation of
Penal Code section 475(b)].
To prove that the defendant is guilty of this crime, the People must
prove that:
1. The defendant possessed a (blank/ [or] unfinished) (check[,]/ [or]
note[,]/ [or] money order[,]/ [or] traveler’s check[,]/ [or] bank
bill);
AND
2. When the defendant possessed the document, (he/she) intended to
complete [or aid the completion of] the document in order to
defraud.
Someone intends to defraud if he or she intends to deceive another
person either to cause a loss of (money[,]/ [or] goods[,]/ [or] services[,]/
[or] something [else] of value), or to cause damage to, a legal, financial,
or property right.
[For the purpose of this instruction, a person includes (a governmental
agency/a corporation/a business/an association/the body politic).]
[It is not necessary that anyone actually be defrauded or actually suffer
a financial, legal, or property loss as a result of the defendant’s acts.]
[The (check[,]/ [or] note[,]/ [or] money order[,]/ [or] traveler’s check[,]/
[or] bank bill) may be real or fictitious.]
[The People allege that the defendant possessed the following
documents: <insert description of each document when
multiple items alleged>. You may not find the defendant guilty unless you
all agree that the People have proved that the defendant possessed at
least one of these documents and you all agree on which document (he/
she) possessed.]
New January 2006
BENCH NOTES
Instructional Duty
The court has a sua sponte duty to give this instruction defining the elements of
the crime.
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If the prosecution alleges under a single count that the defendant possessed
multiple items, the court has a sua sponte duty to instruct on unanimity. (See
People v. Sutherland (1993) 17 Cal.App.4th 602, 619, fn. 6 [21 Cal.Rptr.2d 752].)
Give the last bracketed paragraph, inserting the items alleged. (See also Bench
Notes to CALCRIM No. 3500, Unanimity, discussing when instruction on
unanimity is and is not required.)
Give the bracketed sentence that begins with “For the purpose of this instruction” if
the evidence shows an intent to defraud an entity or association rather than a
natural person. (Pen. Code, § 8.)
Give the bracketed sentence that begins with “It is not necessary” if the evidence
shows that the defendant did not succeed in defrauding anyone. (People v. Morgan
(1956) 140 Cal.App.2d 796, 801 [296 P.2d 75].)
AUTHORITY
• Elements. Pen. Code, § 475(b).
Intent to Defraud. People v. Pugh (2002) 104 Cal.App.4th 66, 72 [127
Cal.Rptr.2d 770]; People v. Gaul-Alexander (1995) 32 Cal.App.4th 735, 745 [38
Cal.Rptr.2d 176].
• Intent to Defraud Entity. Pen. Code, § 8.
• Unanimity Instruction If Multiple Items. People v. Sutherland (1993) 17
Cal.App.4th 602, 619, fn. 6 [21 Cal.Rptr.2d 752].
Secondary Sources
2 Witkin & Epstein, California Criminal Law (3d ed. 2000) Crimes Against
Property, § 173.
4 Millman, Sevilla & Tarlow, California Criminal Defense Practice, Ch. 85,
Submission to Jury and Verdict, § 85.02[2][a][i] (Matthew Bender).
6 Millman, Sevilla & Tarlow, California Criminal Defense Practice, Ch. 143,
Crimes Against Property, § 143.04[1], [2] (Matthew Bender).
RELATED ISSUES
See the Related Issues section to CALCRIM No. 1930, Possession of Forged
Document.
CRIMINAL WRITINGS AND FRAUD CALCRIM No. 1931
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