Have You Been Charged with Soliciting or Accepting a Bribe to Influence an Athletic Contest?
Gambling laws vary across the nation. Some states ban the practice altogether while others allow gambling only on Indian reservations. Georgia has strict gambling laws because they also prohibit wagering on horse races, dog races, or casinos of any kind. If you have been charged with gambling or a gambling-related crime, contact one of our Georgia Gambling Attorneys today.
Georgia Law on Soliciting or Accepting a Bribe to Influence an Athletic Contest
Soliciting or accepting a bribe to influence an athletic contest occurs when a person participating or expecting to participate or any coach, trainer, manager, or official in any amateur contest, sporting event, or exhibition who solicits or accepts any reward, money, or other thing of value with the intent, understanding, or agreement that it would influence him to lose, try to lose, or cause to be lost or to limit the margin of victory or defeat in such athletic contest, sporting event, or exhibition by failing to exert his best efforts or to exercise his best judgment. O.C.G.A. §16-12-34
Analysis of Soliciting or Accepting a Bribe in Georgia
Under the statute, multiple people can be charged with this crime:
- Or any other official
Furthermore, there are multiple ways that this can occur: accepting a reward for losing a game, narrowing the margin of victory, reducing your level of performance, or failing to exercise your best judgment.
The Penalty for Soliciting or Accepting a Bribe to Influence an Athletic Contest
Gambling crimes are punished heavily in Georgia. Even though soliciting may seem like a minor crime, it will be treated as a felony. The punishment will be a fine between $1,000 and $5,000, a prison term between one and five years, or both.
Furthermore, felony convictions have consequences that extend beyond prison and fines. Having a felony conviction on your record can make it difficult to obtain housing, employment, or credit. That is just one of the many reasons it is critical you hire a soliciting or accepting a bribe to influence an athletic contest lawyer in Georgia.
Defenses that Could be Applied in Your Case
There are a multitude of arguments a Georgia Soliciting or Accepting a Bribe to Influence an Athletic Contest Lawyer could make. There is not a one defense fits all when it comes to your case. We understand that no situation is the same and that is why our Georgia Gambling Attorneys tailor your defense strategy to the specifics of your situation. However, some of the defenses that could apply to your case include:
Lack of Intent or Understanding: If you received a reward or money but were unaware that it was given to try and influence your performance, that could be a defense. However, it may be difficult to prove so you need the assistance of a Georgia Soliciting or Accepting a Bribe Lawyer. This argument would involve demonstrating that you were reasonable in believing there was no condition when accepting the item.
No influence occurred: Under the statute, a person can be charged for trying to solicit a bribe. Therefore, even if they were unsuccessful, the attempt will be sufficient to sustain a charge.
I was not a party included under the statute: If you were merely a fan or a bystander for a contest and were approaching with a bribe to influence the match, you may not have violated the statute.
What Does Not Constitute a Defense
The game was not lost: It is immaterial whether the action resulted in the match being lost or not. Trying to lose or causing the margin of victory to be narrowed can be enough for a conviction.
I was not a player in the game: In Georgia, soliciting or accepting a bribe applies to the coach, trainer, or official in the contest. Players are not the only ones subject to the statute.
Soliciting or accepting a bribe to influence an athletic contest in Georgia is a serious offense. The after effects of a conviction will have lifelong consequences. Do not take the charge lightly. Instead, contact one of our Georgia soliciting or accepting a bribe attorneys today. After you speak with us, you will understand why we are Georgia’s premier criminal defense firm. Contact us now.