Bribery Law and Legal Definition

Bribery in criminal law refers to the improper acceptance by a public official, juror, or someone bound by a duty to act impartially, of any gain or advantage to the beneficiary, including any gain or advantage to a third person by the desire or consent of the beneficiary. A gain or advantage may be a pecuniary benefit in the form of money, property, commercial interests or anything else the primary significance of which is economic gain. Expenses associated with social occasions afforded public servants and party officers are not usually considerd a pecuniary benefit within the meaning of this definition

Generally, a person commits the crime of bribery if:

  1. He offers, confers or agrees to confer any thing of value upon a public servant with the intent that the public servant's vote, opinion, judgment, exercise of discretion or other action in his official capacity will thereby be corruptly influenced; or
  2. While a public servant, he solicits, accepts or agrees to accept any pecuniary benefit upon an agreement or understanding that his vote, opinion, judgment, exercise of discretion or other action as a public servant will thereby be corruptly influenced.

It is not a defense to a prosecution that the person sought to be influenced was not qualified to act in the desired way, whether because he had not yet assumed office or lacked jurisdiction.