Hire a Perjury Lawyer for Your Criminal Defense 

If you’re not familiar with the terms, ‘perjury’ or ‘bribery of witness,’ you might not know what to expect if you become charged with either. When you’re accused of perjury, it’s important to understand what that means for you and what your options could be.

An experienced perjury lawyer from the Zoukis Consulting Group can help explain the particulars of these charges to you and defend you against them in court.

What Is Perjury?

When you commit perjury, you intentionally lie while under oath to tell the truth during an official proceeding. For instance, if you swear before a judge to truthfully recount an event but do so knowing that you aren’t going to give a truthful account at all, this lying under oath is known as perjury. 

Perjury used to refer to incidents that only occur during court events, but now it includes many other official proceedings.

You might end up charged with perjury if you:

  • Lie under oath
  • Intentionally mislead an official
  • Give a knowingly false statement
  • Give inconsistent statements
  • Make a false statement relevant to the topic at hand
  • Make a false statement that does not affect the outcome of the proceedings 

However, if a person makes a true statement, no matter their intention, they are not committing perjury. 

For example, if you take the stand to talk about the fate of your mother’s car, and you state the true fact that someone stole it, intending to hide the fact that you or someone you know stole it, this is not perjury. It only becomes perjury after you deny that you know who stole it.

What Is the Punishment for Perjury?

Perjury counts as a federal offense, meaning a person facing perjury charges could receive up to five years in prison, along with fines. A perjury lawyer would have to prove you did not knowingly state an untruth to reduce or remove these charges.

Federal perjury could result in five years in prison, but specific laws vary in different states. The minimum sentence for perjury across the country is one year in prison.

If you make a false statement to cover up a crime, you could also become charged as an accessory to a crime. 

Defenses Against Perjury Charges

A perjury attorney might advise you to employ one of these tactics when faced with charges:

  • True statements
  • Recanted or corrected statements
  • Perjury Trap

True Statements

As mentioned above, if you give a true statement with intent to mislead, this isn’t considered perjury. If you use this as a defense, you must first affirm that all statements you gave were true.

Recanted/Corrected Statements

You can potentially change previously made statements to clarify what you meant. The success of this defense relies on the circumstance in which you made the statements, including what you knew then, who was asking the questions, and the nature of those questions.

Perjury Trap

A prosecutor might try to tempt you into committing perjury if they think it will help their case. Generally, in these circumstances, a prosecutor will only call you to the stand if they believe you will commit perjury on your own. They will very rarely attempt to goad you into it while you are making a statement.

This is a difficult defense to run with, as it is hard to prove.

What Is Bribing a Witness?

Bribery of a witness refers to the act of asking a witness to lie under oath in exchange for something of value. Instead of committing perjury yourself, you are asking someone else to do it for you.

Bribing a witness includes:

  • Attempt to influence their testimony
  • Attempt to dissuade a witness to obey legal proceedings
  • Attempt to dissuade a witness from attending legal proceedings
  • Attempt to dissuade a witness from giving information regarding a crime or abuse/neglect of a minor

If convicted, a person could serve up to six years in prison for bribing a witness, along with several fines. Laws concerning bribery of witnesses vary from state to state.

What to Do if You are Charged with Perjury

If you are facing charges of perjury or bribing a witness, a perjury lawyer can help you understand your options. Steps to build your defense are possible under the advisement of the law.

When you first must appear under oath, be sure to say what you believe is true. A prison consultant can help prepare you for this. If officials believe your statements are intentionally misleading, you can recant or correct them for a more accurate representation.

Hire a Perjury Lawyer to Defend You in Federal Court

Charges of perjury or bribing a witness are felonies and could result in prison sentences.

Contact a professional consultant at the Zoukis Consulting Group to access the services of a federal perjury lawyer to help your defense. We will present you with all kinds of options for how you can fight your charges. 

Contact us today to get started.