1) where one or both parties face an arrest, or 2) when an officer takes or rejects a bribe from someone else. Involvement in these matters may increase or decrease depending on who the parties are and how the circumstances occur.
Police involvement in bribery is sometimes key to investigations with political corruption and either city or state officials. The law enforcement agencies may need to investigate the matter over months to determine if the official did take a bribe and is influencing an election or using his or her power to provide a benefit someone or a group should not have. If the matter involves a corrupt cop, other police may need to assess the matter and gather enough evidence to take to a superior. The larger the matter is, the more evidence is necessary and the longer these matters generally take.
Corruption and Bribery
When someone takes a bribe, he or she engages in illegal activity when it involves a key person such as an official or a cop. The greater power the person has, the more corruption this causes. If the bribed individual has power over city or state decisions, he or she could change the influence over the location in a negative way. This could reverse local ordinances, zoning rules, and even influence others to engage in activities in which they normally would take no part. The bribe is a key piece of evidence, and without knowledge or proof of the bribe, the law enforcement may have no evidence to arrest the official and uncover the corruption.
The Cop and the Arrest
If the person committing bribery leaves evidence behind that the crime occurred, the police may discover the illegal activity and investigate the matter. During this situation, any officials involved may come under suspicion such as a political leader or other cops. However, once the culprit is found, he or she may face an arrest and federal charges of bribery. The other participant will usually face similar charges for accepting a bribe. When this person is a public official, the penalties are often severe and could change his or her life negatively. Some evidence usually involves an exchange of money for favors.
The Cop Accepting the Bribe
If the police officer is complicit in the actions of bribery by the other party, he or she could also face an arrest and federal charges for the activity. However, this could involve additional cops and corruption in the police force. The investigation into the matter may progress to the Federal Bureau of Investigation with multiple agents checking bank accounts, cases with the specific cop and any additional possibility of corruption on the force. Depending on what the officer did when accepting the bribe, the circumstances could involve more severe penalties. Injury to others could also start a civil suit against the professional.
Litigation or Criminal Process
Depending on which side the police officer is on, the matter may proceed to either or both criminal and civil. The law enforcement agency may charge the parties involved with bribery. However, if the issue is a civil one, the plaintiff harmed through the issue will take the other party to a civil court and sue him or her for damages. This is not usually one of the normal processes in bribery because of the complicity in accepting a bribe whether the person is a public figure, a cop or a private citizen. However, both situations usually require the services of a lawyer to proceed.
In a criminal process, the person or cop will need to hire a criminal defense lawyer to defend against charges of bribery. Other matters may increase the spotlight on the local law enforcement department which could lead to a negative impact on the agency. In these situations, a civil matter may commence with the department seeking damages for the impact on the local agency. The department or the head of the local branch may sue the officer for corruption and participation in bribery.
The Lawyer in Bribery with Police Involvement
The officer or private citizen will need a lawyer to work through either criminal defense matters when charged with bribery or when progressing through a lawsuit with another party. If the person is seeking damages for the actions of the other party, the lawyer will need to help prove liability and help gather evidence.