Bribery Lawyer Los Angeles
If you or a loved one has been charged with bribery in California, you should immediately contact Southern California and Los Angeles Bribery Attorney at The H Law Group. Our bribery attorneys have the experience and knowledge to defend those accused of bribery in the State of California. Schedule your Free Consultation today by filling out the contact form below or by calling us at 1 (213) 370-0404.
Southern California and Los Angeles Bribery Attorney
Bribery is a serious criminal offense that carries a maximum prison sentence of four (4) years, a fine of up to $10,000, as well as restitution charges. Being convicted of a bribe is serious, so you should contact a Los Angeles bribery attorney to defend you and represent you throughout the criminal process. The attorneys at The H Law Group have the experience necessary to achieve the best possible results for you!
What is Bribery?
A person commits bribery when he or she offers a public official something of value to influence the public official’s action or nonaction. The prosecution can charge and convict both the person making the bribe and the person receiving the bribe if it proves its case against them. The following persons can be charged with bribery: (1) public employees, (2) legislative officers, (3) judges, (4) jurors, (5) public corporation officials, and (6) witnesses.
Bribery is prosecuted severely because the public expects trust in the dealings between them and the public officials, so when public officials accept something of value to them in order to act in a certain way, it betrays the trust between the public and the public official. As such, if you’ve been arrested for bribery, you should immediately contact a Southern California or Los Angeles bribery attorney at The H Law Group to represent you and fight for your rights. Our bribery lawyer will protect your legal rights from being infringed upon by overzealous prosecutors.
So, what does the prosecution have to prove to show that a defendant committed bribery?
To prove that a defendant committed bribery, the prosecution must show that:
- The defendant gave or offered something of value
- To a public official or a public employee
- With the intent to influence
- The public official’s decision
- In an official function
For example, if the defendant offers a judge $4000 to dismiss a case that is being brought against him, the defendant can be charged with and convicted of bribery because he offered money (something of value) to a judge (public official) with the intent to influence the judge in the outcome of his case. That said, the judge can also be charged with and convicted of bribery, and we will discuss this below.
Bribery Element – Anything of Value
For the prosecution to prove the defendant guilty of bribery, it must show that the defendant gave something of value. Giving something of value is interpreted broadly and includes money or gifts that are given to the individual or promised in the future. Remember, bribery charges can be brought against both the person making the bribe and the person seeking or accepting the bribe. So, if you’ve been charged with bribery, please contact a bribery lawyer at The H Law Group to represent you throughout the legal process.
Bribery – Who Counts as a Public Official?
The term, public officials, includes a lot of people, here are some to name a few: judges, witnesses, district attorneys, police officers, FBI agents, mayor, DMV representative, city councilman, and many more. Anyone who holds or works at a public office is a public official for the purposes of bribery.
Bribery – Intent to Influence
When proving its case against the defendant, the prosecution must show that the defendant offered or made the bribe intending to influence the public official’s actions. This can be demonstrated by pointing to the statements made by the defendant, as well as the fact that he offered a bribe or something of value to influence a specific action.
Bribery – Agreement
To prove that the defendant is guilty of bribery, the prosecution does not need to prove that both parties agreed to the bribe offered. A defendant can be convicted of bribery even though the person to whom the bribe was offered rejected the bribe. The crime is complete as soon as the bribe or offer is made or solicited.
Bribery vs Extortion
Bribery is different from extortion in that bribery involves making a friendly offer to get a public official to do something for you, extortion, on the other hand, involves using threats and fears to convince a party to do or refrain from doing something.
For example, if the defendant offers a judge a sum of money to dismiss his case, we are dealing with bribery. However, if the defendant threatens a judge with exposing the judge’s extramarital affair, we are dealing with extortion. If you’ve been arrested for bribery, please contact a bribery attorney at The H Law Group. We have experienced bribery lawyers who will do their best to achieve the best possible outcome for you.
Punishment for Bribery in California
If convicted of Bribery under California Penal Code Section 67, an individual can be sent to California State Prison for two (2), three (3), or four (4) years. In addition to being sent to prison, an individual is banned from holding a State Office in the State of California.
Legal Defenses to Bribery
To mount a legal defense against your bribery charge, your attorney can make a few arguments, here are some of them:
Bribery is a specific intent crime that requires the prosecution to show you intended to unlawfully influence a person. If the facts of your case support it, your attorney may be able to argue that you did not intend to unlawfully influence the party you’re accused of bribing. For example, if you were drunk, your attorney will argue that you did not have the requisite intent to bribe the other party because you had trouble formulating the intent while you were drunk. Successfully challenging the bribery charges against you is very difficult, so having an experienced bribery attorney is extremely important to have the charges against you dismissed or, at the least, obtain a favorable plea deal. The bribery lawyer at The H Law Group are experienced and will do their best to defend you throughout the criminal process.
Your attorney may be able to argue that the charges against you should be dropped because the other party receiving or the party alleged making the bribe was not actually making a bribe, rather just being friendly or nice. If your case makes it to trial, your attorney will introduce as much evidence as possible to show that the gift, money, or favor exchange was not to influence a public act and that they were merely gifts and that you, therefore, did not have corrupt intent to influence or be influenced by the other party.
Bribery Lawyer Los Angeles and Southern California
Again, if you or a loved one have been charged with bribery, you should promptly contact a bribery lawyer at The H Law Group to defend you in court. Bribery is a serious crime that carries a maximum prison sentence of four years, so it’s best to hire an attorney as early as possible to defend you and achieve the best possible outcome for you. So, if you’re looking for an attorney for bribery, give us a call and schedule your free consultation at (213) 370-0404.