Washington County Perjury Lawyer
When someone accuses you of violating an oath you took in court or on a government document, it can be a distressing and perplexing situation. This is especially true if you are unsure why or how your statement was unlawful. Understanding how state law governs perjury is crucial to effectively fight against this kind of allegation, though, as is seeking representation from a legal professional who has previously handled similar cases.
Time is valuable when fighting perjury allegations, so contacting a Washington County perjury lawyer should be a top priority. The faster your defense attorney can start working on your defense strategy, the higher your chances of achieving a favorable case resolution.
What Constitutes Perjury in Washington County?
According to Maryland Code, Criminal Law §9-101, a person commits the crime of perjury if they “willfully and falsely” make a statement about a “material fact” after taking an oath or any other affirmation under state law. MD Code, CL §9-102 likewise makes it illegal for someone to convince or compel another person to commit perjury on their behalf, also known as “subornation of perjury.”
Both offenses defined under these statutes are classified as misdemeanor offenses for which a conviction may be punished by ten years maximum of imprisonment. Furthermore, under 18 U.S.C. §1621, anyone who commits perjury or subornation in relation to a federal court case or government proceeding may be subject upon conviction to five years in federal prison, as well as a fine of potentially up to $250,000 depending on the applicable statutory guidelines. A Washington County perjury attorney could discuss the potential penalties associated with a perjury conviction during a private consultation.
Contesting Allegations of Perjury or Subornation
Effective defense strategies in perjury cases typically aim to discredit one or more fundamental components of the crime. Specifically, all the following must be true for someone to be convicted of perjury:
- The statement in question was verifiably false
- The defendant knew their statement was false
- The defendant intended to mislead someone with their statement
- The false statement was about something directly relevant to the outcome of the case or proceeding in question
For example, if someone says something under oath in court that is untrue but has no bearing on how the case or hearing they are participating in plays out, they have not committed perjury as defined under state law. Assistance from a perjury attorney in Washington County can be crucial to efficiently collecting evidence and constructing a comprehensive defense based on this kind of argument.
Talk to a Washington County Perjury Attorney as Soon as Possible
Handling perjury accusations can be complex due to the challenge of determining precisely what a defendant knew and what their statements aimed to accomplish. Fortunately, you have help available to you from a dedicated legal professional who has helped other people to enforce their legal rights and pursue a fair perjury case result.
The sooner you start building your defense strategy against a perjury charge, the higher your odds may be of minimizing long-term consequences or even avoiding them entirely. Contact a Washington County perjury lawyer today to learn more.