Thursday, December 26, 2013

What is Perjury?

Perjury is a felony offense in the state of Nevada. Commonly referred to as “lying under oath”, perjury is a serious crime that occurs when an individual purposefully lies while under oath. Similarly, a person can be guilty of perjury if, while under oath, they make a statement which they do not know to actually be true.

According to NRS 199.120, perjury occurs when, while under oath in a judicial or other official proceeding that requires an oath to be taken, the individual does any of the following:
  • Willfully makes a statement that is unqualified and that they do not know to be true; or
  • Willfully and falsely affirms or swears in a matter that is crucial to the point or issue in question; or
  • Bribes, induces, or suborns another person to make a statement that is unqualified or to affirm or swear in such a matter; or
  • Executes an affidavit seeking a verification of a pleading which contains a false statement or induces another person to do so; or
  • Executes an affidavit or another instrument which contains a false statement before an individual who is authorized to administer oaths, or induces another person to do so.
It is important to note that a person has not committed perjury if they believed that the statement they made was actually true.

The Penalties for Perjury in Nevada

If convicted of perjury, the defendant’s penalties will reflect the factors involved in their specific case.

Attempting to bribe, induce or suborn another person to commit perjury, even if perjury is never committed, is a gross misdemeanor. The penalties include:
  • Fines up to $2,000
  • Incarceration in county jail for a maximum of 1 year

For committing perjury, the defendant will be charged with a Category D felony, punishable by:
  • Fines up to $5,000
  • Incarceration in state prison for a minimum of 1 year to a maximum of 4 years

If the defendant willfully commits perjury or induces someone else to commit perjury which leads to an innocent person being convicted and executed, the defendant could be charged with murder, which is a Category A felony, punishable by:
  • Life in prison without the possibility of parole; or
  • Life in prison with the possibility of parole after serving 20 years; or
  • Incarceration in prison for 50 years with a possibility of parole after 20 years.
If you are charged with perjury, it is important to have an experienced defense team on your side. Learn about our experienced attorneys by visiting our website or call De Castroverde Law Group to discuss your legal options.