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California Penal Code 67 68 pc Bribery by or of Executive Officers or Public Employees

July 8, 2021 California Penal Code

California’s statute that makes it a crime for a person to bribe any executive officer is Penal Code 67 PC. This group of “executive officers” includes district attorneys and police officers, among others. A violation is a felony carrying up to 4 years in jail or prison.

 

Some examples of unlawful acts are

  • passing a DA an envelope full of cash and saying, “let’s drop the charges on my dad.”
  • handing a police officer the keys to a car in exchange for not reporting a crime.
  • offering a health department official $50,000 for not reporting violations in a restaurant inspection.

 

The Best Legal Defenses to a 67 PC bribery charge

Individuals charged under this law can raise a good legal defense on their behalf with the help of experienced counsel.  The accused can attempt to show that:

  1. The other party was not an “executive officer,”
  2. he or she did not have a corrupt intentions, and/or
  3. law enforcement engaged in illegal entrapment.

 

Penalties on conviction for 67 PC bribery offenses

 

Violators of California Penal Code Section 67 face a felony charge punishable by time in jail or prison for up to four years and/or substantial fines.

The law cuts both ways on this issue.  It is also a crime for an executive officer or public employee to accept a bribe under California Penal Code 68 PC.  This statute makes it a felony for an executive officer to ask for, or receive or agree to, any bribe.

 

The California criminal defense attorneys at Spodek Law Group will teach you in this article:

  1. Under what circumstances is bribing an executive officer a crime under California law?
  2. What legal defenses are there to bribery charges?
  3. What are the penalties for violating the 67 PC statute?
  4. Are there negative immigration consequences connected to conviction on 67PC bribery charges?
  5. Could a conviction on this charge be expunged from my records?
  6. How will a PC 67 conviction affect gun rights?
  7. What related crimes are there to 67/68 PC bribery charges?

 

  1. Under what circumstances is bribing an executive officer a crime under California law?

The district attorney must prove the following to successfully convict a person under this law:

  1. he or she gave or offered a bribe to an executive officer, and
  2. he or she acted with the corrupt intent to unlawfully influence that officer’s official act, decision, vote, or opinion.

 

For the purposes of this statute, the word “bribe” means something of present or future value or advantage, or a promise to give something of present or future value or advantage.

The term “corrupt intent” refers to when he or she acts to wrongfully gain a financial or other advantage for himself, herself, or someone else.

As far as the term “executive officer”, this is a government official who could use his or her own discretion in performing his or her job duties.   District attorneys, police chiefs,  police officers, and deputy city coroners are among the ranks of executive officers.

 

  1. What legal defenses are there to bribery charges?

The skilled criminal defense attorneys of Spodek Law Group will give you an overview of three defenses used for bribery charges:

 

The “No executive officer” defense

A good defense lawyer will attempt to demonstrate that a person, subject to a bribe, was not an “executive officer.”  Nevertheless, if a bribe was made or offered, then the defendant may still be charged of a crime under another penal code section.

 

The “No corrupt intent” defense

Defendants can also raise the defense that he or she did not act with this intent. Maybe, for example, the accused offered an officer something of value simply as a gift.

 

The “Entrapment” defense

Entrapment is a customary defense to bribery charges.  This occurs when law enforcement lures an individual into committing a crime just to make an arrest. It is a strong legal defense provided that the accused can demonstrate that he or she only committed the crime because of the entrapment.

 

  1. What are the penalties for violating the 67 PC statute?

Penal Code 67 offenses are charged as felonies punishable by a term in state prison for up to four years, and/or substantial fines.

 

4.Are there negative immigration consequences connected to conviction on 67PC bribery charges?

A bribery conviction could indeed have negative immigration consequences. Pursuant to California law, selected felonies, including a bribery, can amount to “aggravated felonies” based on the facts of the case.  If the defendant who commits one of these offenses is a non-citizen, then he or she can be deported or marked as inadmissible.

Therefore, a guilty charge under this legislation can produce a hurtful immigration result if the facts reveal that the bribery committed amounted to an aggravated felony.

 

  1. Could a conviction on this charge be expunged from my records?

A conviction under these statutes can only be expunged if he or she avoids prison time.  If they are penalized with probation or a fine in lieu of a prison term, then expungement is an option.

 

  1. How will a PC 67 conviction affect gun rights?

Any PC 67 bribery conviction does negatively affect a person’s gun rights.

 

  1. What related crimes are there to 67/68 PC bribery charges?

The two crimes related to these statutes are:

 

  1. PC 85 and 86 – the bribery by and of legislators statutes, and
  2. PC 165 – the bribery of county supervisors or public corporations statute

 

For further guidance or to discuss your case with a criminal defense attorney, we invite you to reach out to our criminal defense attorneys at Spodek Law Group. We represent clients all over California, including those in Orange County, Glendale, Burbank, Los Angeles, Beverly Hills, Long Beach, San Fernando and beyond.

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