What is the Law on Perjury of Oath in Oregon and What are the Punishments for it?Perjury and false swearing laws are constituted in the Oregon state statutes the ORS162.055. It is imperative that anyone involved in a case know a few terms and their definitions to understand the proceeding in court. Some of them are:
Benefit: Benefit means to gain an advantage for a person or a recipient and anyone connected with him.
Material: A material is that substance which constraints the course and outcome of any proceeding or transaction.
Statement: Statement is a depiction of facts, a depiction of belief, opinion or a statement of or from the mind. A statement is also described as when a depiction of facts directly relates to the state of mind of an individual.
Sworn Statement: A sworn statement is any statement that consolidates what is stated which is usually officially said under an oath or a declaration.
ORS 162.055 Perjury:
According to the Oregon Statutes on perjury, the crime of perjury is committed when a person makes a contradictory or a false statement in regard to a material issue, even after knowing very well that it is false. The law declares perjury as a Class C Felony in Oregon.
ORS 162.075 False Swearing:
False swearing is a crime and is committed when a person makes a false statement while under oath, knowing perfectly well that it is, in fact, a false statement. Oregon laws state False Swearing is Class A misdemeanor.
ORS 162.085 Un-Sworn Falsification:
When a person makes a false statement to a public servant in connection with an application or a document with an intention to reap benefits from the statement, it is known as Un-Sworn Falsification. Under the Oregon State laws, Un-sworn Falsification is a Class B Misdemeanor.
ORS 162.095 Defenses to Perjury and False Statement:
Some defenses to a perjury charge are:
1. Under the rules of evidence, the statement made was inadmissible
2. The oath or affirmation was taken in a non-conducive circumstance
3. The offender was led to mistakenly believe the false statement to be immaterial.
ORS 162.105 Retraction as a defense:
A way to escape conviction in perjury or a false statement charge is to retract or refute the statement made earlier. A retraction of the statement is accepted by the court if:
1. The defendant has retracted his or her statement completely and voluntarily.
2. The retracted statement should be made during the course of the court session and not later.
3. The statement is submitted in an official hearing and to the ultimate trier of facts.
The next step when threatened with a Perjury Charge:
The act of perjury can sway a judge and the decisions he makes to a great extent which may result in serious harm caused to the defendant. And therefore it is normal that the defendant can file perjury charges on you. Since the charges are criminal in nature, its best to hire a lawyer who can go a long way in minimizing the intensity of the penalties and also possibly go for a plea bargain.
Hiring a lawyer is optimal because a perjury charge is a severe charge. In fact, it is severe to the extent where a simple misdemeanor can elevate itself to a felony without much effort. This, in turn, results in a far greater penalty with punishments ranging from thousands of dollars to many years in prison.
An experienced lawyer would be able to counter and refute the charges. The lawyer must also go on to prove that the elements charged in the case do not exist in reality and that the impact was not serious to the case.
A Plea Bargain:
Most perjury cases can grow to be lengthy and protracted. A plea bargain helps to cut down the duration of the case substantially. The accused could come to a settlement out of court which is suitably acceptable to the defendant. A lawyers presence is vital in entering into negotiations to begin the process of forming and accepting a plea bargain.