Bribery Of A Legislator – California Penal Code Section 85
When it comes to bribing somebody in the government – for example, someone who is in the legislature – this would be a very serious offense and the person could be looking at multiple years in state prison.
Typically, the conduct that you’re talking about in order to be charged with Penal Code Section 85 – bribery of someone in the legislature – is trying to get them to do something with a corrupt intent by offering them something of value in order to get them to vote a certain way or do a certain thing that would obviously be illegal and would be inappropriate when looked at by a reasonable person in evaluating whether the person was doing something that was unlawful related to their job as a legislator.
Usually where you see people getting caught for bribery of a legislature, it’s where people are trying to improperly influence another person – either by giving them some sort of money – it could happen even before the person is elected – and then after the person who gave them the money is now trying to cash in the favor and then they could be charged at the state or federal level. At the state level, the Penal Code Section is 8 and that basically defines all the necessary elements in order to get somebody for this type of offense.
Defenses To Bribery Of A Legislator
A lot of times what happens is they tape record some of the circumstances surrounding the alleged offense. Sometimes some of the conversations are not completely clear and it’s the government trying to read between the lines.
Obviously, that’s why we get you and go over everything and get your side of the story because a lot of times a one-sided investigation is done so your side of the story is really not gotten across to the police or the prosecutors and that’s the criminal defense attorney’s job in order to do that.
Another defense to a bribery case involving a legislator or otherwise is entrapment. Basically, what that has to do with is somebody who is really not predisposed to commit this sort of a crime, becoming involved in a conversation and either law enforcement, the legislator or somebody else attempting to manipulating them into getting involved and goading them into some sort of offer or acceptance that they’re going to pay some sort of money or get some sort of value in order to have the legislature do something that they’re not allowed to do as part of their job description.
So, really when it comes to defenses related to bribery cases, they’re going to turn on the facts of the case, and that’s why it’s so crucial – even at the investigation phase – if you’re potentially looking at a Penal Code Section 85 violation you want to make sure you get with your attorney and tell your attorney what’s going on and let them advise you.
Let them deal with law enforcement or anybody that’s trying to talk to you and try to get you to be involved in something unlawful where you’re looking at multiple years in prison. What I have you do is have you come in to go over everything. Obviously, I want you to give me an accurate account of what happened and then I can really advise you on your next move and assist you with it.
Penalties for a Violation Of Penal Code Section 85
If you get charged with this at the federal level, you could be looking at multiple years in prison and loss of many of your rights. Even at the state level, a bribery charge – depending on what the circumstances are surrounding what you’re attempting to do, the amounts of money involved, your criminal record – all these things are going to be factored in when the prosecutor and judge are trying to figure out what they believe is an appropriate sentence for you.
But obviously, from your side you want to get your criminal defense attorney involved. Let them get your side of the story across. Get any defenses out there, because obviously you don’t want to go to prison for a significant period of time, lose rights to vote, rights to bear arms and many other potential things that can be in jeopardy when it comes to the penalties related to a bribery case – especially of a legislator – and the reason they’re so serious about this is because obviously legislators are entrusted with the fabric of our government, and so any type of manipulation related to that is going to be dealt with swiftly and harshly. So, it’s in your best interests to get in front of a great criminal defense attorney who knows how to handle these types of cases and can see you through it.
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