DC Illegal Gratuity Lawyer

Illegal gratuities are a type of public corruption crime that is similar to bribery, but provide a payment, service, or offering of value toward a public official after they have acted in a certain way, rather than before. A DC illegal gratuity lawyer could help you determine which public corruption allegations are being made against you and work to obtain a favorable outcome in your case

Illegal Gratuity vs. Bribery Allegations

Illegal gratuities and bribes differ in one crucial way. Bribery requires prosecutors to prove a quid pro quo, meaning the intent of the bribe is to induce the public official to act in a certain way. Specifically, the bribe is offered or requested to induce a certain official to act in violation of their lawful duties.

Illegal gratuities, on the other hand, do not require prosecutors to prove there was a quid pro quo or that the purpose of the gratuity was to induce a political move. Typically, gratuities come after a public official has acted, like a gift for their behavior. By comparison, bribes usually precede an action by a public official by inciting it with money or anything of value.

DC prosecutors do not need to prove the public official received an illegal gratuity with the intent to induce them to act in a certain way. They only need to prove that the public official acted in a specific manner and afterwards received something of value as a result of their actions. With legal representation, a defendant could demonstrate that a gift was not given as reward for acting a certain way.

What are the Penalties for a Federal Illegal Gratuity Conviction?

The penalties for illegal gratuity in Washington DC are slightly less than the ones a person could face if convicted for bribery. The maximum penalty a person could face if convicted on illegal gratuity charges is up to two years in prison and fines up to $250,000.

Illegal Gratuity Allegations

Federal prosecutors may allege an illegal gratuity in cases where a person in a position of trust or authority at a federal agency acts in a way that benefits a private individual or organization, then subsequently receives, requests, or is offered something of value because of their official acts.  The lack of an agreement in advance of the official act would make it difficult for a prosecutor prove to prove that the exchange was a bribe but may still be able to prove an illegal gratuity took place.

Prosecutors do not need to prove a federal employee acted specifically to receive the gifts, only that the federal employee acted and received the gift as a result of that official act.

Reach Out to a DC Defense Attorney to Learn More about Illegal Gratuity

A criminal defense attorney could help you understand public corruption, federal bribery laws, and gifting to officials. Using the advice of a DC illegal gratuity lawyer, you could relieve yourself from fraud allegations and restore your future reputation. Set up a consultation to learn more about your legal options today.