December 14, 2011 By Wallin & Klarich

Federal laws regarding bribes are broadly construed in order to effectuate the legislative purpose of deterring corruption. It is a crime to corruptly give, offer or promise anything of value to any public official with intent:

• To influence any official act • To influence such public official to commit any fraud on the U.S.
• To induce such public official to do or omit to do any act in violation of the lawful duty of such official
These are extremely serious charges and require an experienced federal criminal defense lawyer, as the federal court system is much different than the state court system.

In essence, the law is violated when a defendant expresses an ability and a desire to pay the bribe…no matter how small. The punishment for bribing a public official is imprisonment up to 15 years.

The crime of bribery is distinguished from the crime of “illegal gratuity.” Bribery requires a quid pro quo (a specific intent to give or receive something of value in exchange for an official act). An illegal gratuity, on the other hand, may constitute merely a reward for some future act that the public official will take or for a past act that he has already taken. The punishment for an “illegal gratuity” is much less than bribery – up to 2 years imprisonment.

With this major discrepancy in punishment, every Federal Criminal Attorney should consider and evaluate the elements of the crime alleged and other lesser related crimes.

To navigate through the Federal Court system successfully and have a better chance of not being charged with a Federal Crime, you must contact Wallin & Klarich to help you or your loved one. With over 30 years of experience as Federal Criminal Lawyers, Wallin & Klarich will assist you in this difficult time. Visit our website at or call us at 888-749-0034. We will be there when you call.

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