Those who try to offer government officials something of value in exchange for favorable treatment may be engaging in bribery. In many cases, both the party giving the bribe and the party accepting the bribe can be charged with a crime. To prove that bribery occurred, a New York prosecutor would need to show that a person or entity intended to act in a corrupt manner.
It is important to note that a person doesn’t need to receive money to obtain something of value from another party. Several other criteria must be met to prove that bribery occurred. For instance, it must be shown that the person asked to take an action was a public official who had the authority to follow through on such a request. A person could be convicted of offering or accepting a bribe even if the agreement had no negative impact on the public.
It may be possible to prove that bribery occurred even if there was no written agreement between the parties involved in the scheme. Those who are convicted of bribery could spend time in jail and pay a fine. A person could be convicted of bribery for paying foreign officials to take action that would be in their best interests.
Individuals who have been charged with bribery may want to reach out to a criminal defense attorney. Legal counsel could take steps to help a client avoid penalties such as a fine, jail time or probation. This may be done by casting doubt on witness testimony or other evidence introduced at trial. In some cases, evidence could be thrown out before it can be shown to jurors, which may weaken a prosecutor’s case.