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Is something illegal if you don't know about it?

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Is something illegal if you don't know about it?

Old 10-10-06, 05:13 PM
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Is something illegal if you don't know about it?

Is playing dumb a real excuse when being arrested for something? For example (bad example), let say a person wakes up out of a coma and is caught driving without a seatbelt on... could they justifiable say they were not aware that driving with a seatbelt was the law now?(/bad example)

or someone travels to the US and is drinking a beer while walking down the street. in the US, it's illegal, but in other countries it is not a big deal
Old 10-10-06, 05:16 PM
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Kind of like George Costanza having sex with the maid on his desk? "I'm going to have to plead ignorance on this one."
Old 10-10-06, 05:16 PM
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Originally Posted by Groucho
Kind of like George Costanza having sex with the maid on his desk? "I'm going to have to plead ignorance on this one."
yeah.. kinda like that
Old 10-10-06, 05:19 PM
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It's still illegal. You may get a lighter sentence if you can show that you were truly ignorant.
Old 10-10-06, 05:20 PM
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Ignorance of the law is not a good defense.
Old 10-10-06, 05:21 PM
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I've often wondered how the general public could be expected to know EVERY SINGLE LAW they need to obey, when there is never really a time when that is explained in detail.

I mean, I pretty much know if something is illegal or not, but once it starts getting outside of the obvious (especially with regards to white-collar crime) then I think it's possible that someone would legitimately not know if something was illegal.
Old 10-10-06, 05:21 PM
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When being arrested? Ignorance is absolutely no excuse. 95% of the people that get arrested lie anyway, letting ignorance be an excuse would just open the floodgates to people trying that method of getting out of something.

In the courts, who knows? Depends on the judge.
Old 10-10-06, 05:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Draven
I've often wondered how the general public could be expected to know EVERY SINGLE LAW they need to obey, when there is never really a time when that is explained in detail.

I mean, I pretty much know if something is illegal or not, but once it starts getting outside of the obvious (especially with regards to white-collar crime) then I think it's possible that someone would legitimately not know if something was illegal.
Yeah, I was surprised to hear about that law concerning holding $10,000 or more. That 'drug dealer' thread is the first I've ever heard of that. Not that I'd ever have $10,000 to just carry around but still...
Old 10-10-06, 05:49 PM
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Originally Posted by DRG
Yeah, I was surprised to hear about that law concerning holding $10,000 or more. That 'drug dealer' thread is the first I've ever heard of that. Not that I'd ever have $10,000 to just carry around but still...
Exactly. Perfect example.
Old 10-10-06, 06:12 PM
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Originally Posted by DRG
Yeah, I was surprised to hear about that law concerning holding $10,000 or more. That 'drug dealer' thread is the first I've ever heard of that. Not that I'd ever have $10,000 to just carry around but still...
You misunderstand. It is not illegal to carry $10k+ in cash. It's only illegal to not report any cash transaction over $10k.

Last edited by GMan2819; 10-10-06 at 07:06 PM.
Old 10-10-06, 06:25 PM
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Is something illegal if you don't know about it?
Yes, but not until you get caught. For example, in MD, it is legal to drive with a radar detector. If you are a MD resident and drive into DC or VA, where they are illegal, you can get a ticket. Whether you get a ticket or a warning depends on your lying skills.

I bet some of you don't know this: sodomy is still illegal in 14 states. So you cocksuckers living in those states are committing crimes on a regular basis.

Last edited by GMan2819; 10-10-06 at 06:52 PM.
Old 10-10-06, 07:56 PM
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Will they arrest me or my wife?
Old 10-10-06, 08:06 PM
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There are some really dumb laws out there, though. In my state alone, here are some weird laws. Bolded laws I have broken. I know, I am a rebel.

It is contrary to Pennsylvania law to discharge a gun, cannon, revolver or other explosive weapon at a wedding.

It is illegal to have over 16 women live in a house together because that constitutes a brothel.

It it illegal to sleep on top of a refrigerator outdoors.

Any motorist driving along a country road at night must stop every mile and send up a rocket signal, wait 10 minutes for the road to be cleared of livestock, and continue.

A special cleaning ordinance bans housewives from hiding dirt and dust under a rug in a dwelling.

You may not sing in the bathtub. (Well, showers don't count right?)

Fireworks stores may not sell fireworks to Pennsylvania residents.

A person is not eligible to become Governor if he/she has participated in a duel.

Any motorist who sights a team of horses coming toward him must pull well off the road, cover his car with a blanket or canvas that blends with the countryside, and let the horses pass.

Ministers are forbidden from performing marriages when either the bride or groom is drunk.

No more than two packages of beer at a time may be purchased, unless you are buying from an official "beer distributor".

All liquor stores must be run by the state.

Motorized vehicles are not to be sold on Sundays.

You may not catch a fish with your hands.

You may not catch a fish by any body part except the mouth.

Dynamite is not to be used to catch fish.

Though you do not need a fishing license to fish on your own land, but a hunting license is required to hunt on your own land.
Source
Old 10-10-06, 08:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Groucho
Kind of like George Costanza having sex with the maid on his desk? "I'm going to have to plead ignorance on this one."

"It's not a lie if you believe it."
Old 10-10-06, 08:07 PM
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Originally Posted by kvrdave
Ignorance of the law is not a good defense.
Moreso, it's not a valid one (meaning you can't even proffer it).
Old 10-10-06, 08:42 PM
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What if you go to Amsterdam on vacation, smoke weed, come back to work, get a drug test at work, and fail it. Does the company have the right to fire you based on you doing something that wasn't even illegal where/when you were doing it?
Old 10-10-06, 08:47 PM
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Unless you're retarded, ignorance of the law is not a good defense.
Old 10-10-06, 09:35 PM
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Originally Posted by GMan2819
Yes, but not until you get caught. For example, in MD, it is legal to drive with a radar detector. If you are a MD resident and drive into DC or VA, where they are illegal, you can get a ticket. Whether you get a ticket or a warning depends on your lying skills.
Actually that is a perfect example.. wish i thought of it.. it happened to me.. I was driving cross country and in MD got pulled over and wasn't sure why.. cop told me it was due to having a radar detector.. i explained i didn't know it was illegal and he said as long as I put it in my glove compartment, i could continue on my way
Old 10-10-06, 10:36 PM
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Originally Posted by gijon213
There are some really dumb laws out there, though. In my state alone, here are some weird laws. Bolded laws I have broken. I know, I am a rebel.



Source
The minister one is not really that dumb. It is required to make a valid contract (marriage) both parties must be coherent. This is true for any legally binding contract.
Old 10-10-06, 10:57 PM
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Originally Posted by GMan2819
I bet some of you don't know this: sodomy is still illegal in 14 states. So you cocksuckers living in those states are committing crimes on a regular basis.
Those laws were overturned in 2003 by the Supreme Court. Why do people still think this?
Old 10-10-06, 11:09 PM
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Originally Posted by TheMadMonk
What if you go to Amsterdam on vacation, smoke weed, come back to work, get a drug test at work, and fail it. Does the company have the right to fire you based on you doing something that wasn't even illegal where/when you were doing it?

I am assuming you are joking if not a private company can fire you for breaking if they have it listed as part of conditions of working that you be drug free.

It is illegal to have over 16 women live in a house together because that constitutes a brothel.
I know for other MO this was proven to no longer be a real law. I would assume the same in PA.
Old 10-10-06, 11:14 PM
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Ignorance is nine-tenths of the law.

das
Old 10-10-06, 11:21 PM
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insanity plea is the way to go!
Old 10-10-06, 11:54 PM
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Originally Posted by strife
I am assuming you are joking if not a private company can fire you for breaking if they have it listed as part of conditions of working that you be drug free.
Yeah, I was pretty much joking. But, I do think it is interesting. Your job states that you be free of illegal drugs, but the drugs you did weren't illegal at the time/place you did them. Same way people who go to a brothel in Nevada aren't arrested for soliciting prostitution when they return to their own state, and kids who travel to Europe and take advantage of the lower drinking age aren't arrested for underage drinking upon returning to the US.
Old 10-10-06, 11:58 PM
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Originally Posted by TheMadMonk
Yeah, I was pretty much joking. But, I do think it is interesting. Your job states that you be free of illegal drugs, but the drugs you did weren't illegal at the time/place you did them. Same way people who go to a brothel in Nevada aren't arrested for soliciting prostitution when they return to their own state, and kids who travel to Europe and take advantage of the lower drinking age aren't arrested for underage drinking upon returning to the US.
apples to oranges. job is private and has it's own rules. The other two are goverment and unless you were actaully drunk have no way to prove it.

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