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News & Press: General News

New DOJ Pawn Systems: Where is your City?

Thursday, September 1, 2016  
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The California Department of Justice has released the California Pawn & Secondhand Dealer System (CAPSS) that was outlined in 2012 by Assembly Bill 391. CAPSS offers the pawn and secondhand dealer industry tools to manage and renew their operating permits and electronically report business transaction to law enforcement. CAPSS is designed to replace the paper “JUS 123” forms that dealers previously provided to law enforcement when secondhand items were acquired from members of the public.

The CAPSS system is a central repository for all property transactions, creating a statewide system for the pawn and secondhand dealers to better report business transactions that assists law enforcement with identifying who may be selling stolen goods. Previously, each agency was tasked with manually entering the JUS123 forms into DOJ’s Automated Property System (APS), which provided little investigative assistance unless a serial number of unique item description was available. From the municipal IT perspective, it is incumbent upon city and agency IT staff to ensure their departments and law enforcement professionals have proper access to this web-based system. Local law enforcement is also charged with the education of local pawn and secondhand dealers. Each store must be equipped with a computer with Internet access, a fingerprint scanner and an electronic signature pad to comply with State law. Alternately dealers can have an interface to DOJ from their existing inventory systems The Attorney Generals website has more details for businesses at here


This change in State regulation provides an opportunity for local governments to review their ordinances related to pawn and secondhand dealers. Ordinances should be reviewed and updated to reflect the current statewide requirements. While members of the pawn and secondhand dealer industry initially voiced concerns over some of the technical requirements, recent adjustments to CAPSS have been well received and the industry’s professional association, CAPA now appears to be encouraging compliance.

While members of the pawn and secondhand dealer industry initially balked at the State requirement, their professional associations now appear to be encouraging compliance. 

Prior to the CAPSS system, a number of local governments and merchants proactively used a private reporting system, Leads Online for tracking of secondhand goods. Agencies that currently use or have businesses in their municipalities using Leads Online should reach out to see how their information will integrate with the CAPSS system. 

Cities with questions regarding the CAPSS program can contact DOJ at 916-227-6400 or

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