The Crimes of "Offering & Preparing False Evidence"
California Penal Code 132 & 134 PC

Img-offering-false-evidence

Most people can probably guess that it's a bad idea to try to use fake or altered evidence in a California court proceeding, such as a criminal jury trial or a traffic court hearing. But what you may not know is that it's not just a bad idea...it's also a crime.

Both offering and preparing false evidence are obstruction of justice crimes in California. Penal Code 132 PC makes it a felony to knowingly present false written evidence in pretty much any kind of legal proceeding.1 Similarly, Penal Code 134 PC makes it a crime to prepare any false evidence with the intent to use it in a legal proceeding (even if, for whatever reason, the false evidence never actually gets presented in court).2

The criminal charges and potential penalties for offering or preparing false evidence are the same no matter how serious the subject of the legal proceeding is. In other words, you commit a felony if you offer or prepare false evidence in a murder trial...and also if you falsify evidence to fight a traffic ticket!3

Penalties

Offering or preparing false evidence under Penal Code 132 PC or Penal Code 134 PC is a California felony.4 This means that it is possible to be sentenced to as much as three (3) years in California state prison if you are convicted.5

Defenses

The good news is that you can't be convicted of either offering or preparing false evidence unless a prosecutor can prove that you knew what you were doing.

To be convicted of offering false evidence under Penal Code 132 PC, you need to have actually known that the evidence you were presenting was false.6 For a Penal Code 134 PC (preparing false evidence) conviction, the prosecutor has to prove that you intended both 1) to have the false evidence presented in a legal proceeding as if it was true, and 2) to deceive or mislead someone in the proceeding.7

It can be difficult to show beyond a reasonable doubt what a defendant knew, or intended to do. Therefore, lack of knowledge or lack of intent can be a powerful legal defense against Penal Code 132 PC or Penal Code 134 PC charges.

In this article, our California criminal defense attorneys8 explain Penal Code 132 PC, California's law against offering false evidence, and Penal Code 134 PC, California's law against preparing false evidence, by addressing the following:

1. Legal definition of "offering false evidence"
(Penal Code 132 PC)

1.1. Presenting false written evidence

1.2. In a legal proceeding

1.3. Knowing that the evidence is false

2. Legal definition of "preparing false evidence"
(Penal Code 134 PC)

2.1. Preparing a false matter or thing

2.1.1. Any kind of material

2.1.2. Definition of "false"

2.2. Intent to produce false evidence in a legal proceeding

2.3. Fraudulent or deceptive purpose

3. Legal defenses against charges of offering or preparing false evidence

3.1. Mistake of fact

3.2. Lack of intent

3.3. Entrapment

4. Penalties for offering false evidence or preparing false evidence
5. Related Offenses

5.1. Destroying evidence (Penal Code 135 PC)

5.2. Planting evidence (Penal Code 141 PC)

5.3. Forgery

5.4. Perjury

If you would like more information after reading this article, we invite you to contact us at Shouse Law Group.

You may also find helpful information in our related articles on California Criminal Jury Trials; How It Works; Traffic Offenses; Juvenile Delinquency Proceedings and Juvenile Criminal Defense in California; Common Legal Defenses to California Crimes; Mistake of Law/Mistake of Fact; California Entrapment Laws; Prosecutorial Misconduct in California; Legal Definition of a Felony in California Law; The Crime of Destroying Evidence in California Penal Code 135 PC; Legal Definition of a Misdemeanor in California Law; The California Crime of Planting Evidence Penal Code 141 PC; California Forgery Laws Penal Code 470 PC; and California Perjury Laws Penal Code 118 PC.

1. Legal definition of "offering false evidence"
(Penal Code 132 PC)

1.1. Presenting false written evidence

Penal Code 132 PC makes it a crime to actually put forth fake evidence in court or another legal proceeding.9 Penal Code 132 PC only applies to written evidence-specifically, to books, papers, documents, records, or pretty much anything else that is in writing.10 This can include things like:

  1. A forged will,11
  2. DMV records based on false information,12 or
  3. A forged receipt saying that a certain amount of money has been paid.13

(As we will discuss in Section 2.1.1. below, Penal Code 134 PC, the law against preparing false evidence, applies to a much broader range of potential evidence.14 )

What does it mean to "offer" fake written evidence? Normally, you offer evidence in a jury trial when you try to have that evidence presented to a jury. But for purposes of Penal Code 132 PC, the definition of offering evidence is much broader.15 California courts have held that a defendant can be guilty of offering false evidence if he gives the evidence to his attorney and it is brought into the court process in ways other than actually being shown to a jury.16

1.2. In a legal proceeding

You can't violate Penal Code 132, California's law against presenting false evidence, unless you offer fake evidence in some kind of legal proceeding.17

Img-gavel-evidence

This includes not only criminal trials and civil trials...but also things like traffic court hearings18 and pretty much any other kind of hearing or investigation that's authorized by California law.

Example: Clark files a formal grievance with a public university over not being hired for a teaching position. As part of the grievance process, he submits a forged letter. Clark is guilty of violating California's law against presenting false evidence, even though the evidence wasn't part of an actual trial in court.19

Example: Andrew gets a traffic ticket for running a stop sign (a relatively minor traffic offense). He decides to contest the ticket. He submits doctored evidence as part of the ticket contesting process, gets caught, and is sentenced to a year in county jail (much worse than a traffic ticket!) for his false evidence conviction.20

1.3. Knowing that the evidence is false

Of course, you won't go to jail for inadvertently offering false evidence in a trial or hearing. You have to have done so knowingly.21

This means that you have to have known that the evidence was false or forged and decided to offer it anyway. It doesn't mean that you have to have known that it was illegal to offer false evidence.22

2. Elements of the crime of preparing false evidence (Penal Code 134 PC)

The crime of preparing false evidence, which is covered by Penal Code 134 PC, is even broader than the crime of offering false evidence under Penal Code 132 PC. Here are the elements of the crime of preparing false evidence:

2.1. Preparing a false matter or thing

As a basic matter, you can't be convicted under Penal Code 134 PC unless you prepare some kind of false or forged "book, paper, record, instrument in writing, or other matter or thing."23

2.1.1. Any kind of material

As we discussed above, you can only be convicted under Penal Code 132 PC for offering false written evidence. In contrast, Penal Code 134 PC makes it a crime to prepare any kind of false evidence.

This includes not just letters and documents, but things like photos too.24 And it includes some much less obvious things as well, as in this example:

Example: William is on probation. One of the conditions of his probation is that he stay drug-free. When he goes to meet with his probation officer for a urine test, he uses a special kit that allows him to pass someone else's urine off as his own to provide the sample.

The "fake" urine is false evidence, and William is guilty of falsifying evidence for doing this.25

2.1.2. Definition of "false"

California courts have also shown that they're willing to adopt a pretty broad definition of "false."

Example: Andrew (whom we mentioned above) is trying to fight a traffic ticket for running a stop sign. To help his case, he gives the court a photo that he claims is of the intersection where he was supposed to have run the stop sign. The photo shows that there is no stop sign visible at that intersection. In fact, though, the photo is of another intersection, not the one where Andrew is supposed to have run the stop sign.

The photo itself is not fake in any way. It's just not what Andrew claims it is (it's a photo of a different intersection). Andrew is guilty of preparing false evidence anyway.26

Also, the language of Penal Code 134 PC makes it clear that false evidence includes documents or photos that are real but that have had their dates changed to make it look like they were prepared earlier than they actually were.27

Example: Sam is wrongly accused of California robbery for robbing a convenient store. The security camera photos of the robbery show a man with a ponytail. Sam has short hair...but he used to have a ponytail, and he happens to have gotten it cut off just a couple of days after the robbery happened.

Sam finds a digital photo of himself right after he had his ponytail cut off (showing him with short hair). With the help of a friend who is good with computers, Sam changes the date stamp on the photo to make it look like it was taken before the robbery...rather than a few days after. Sam may be guilty of preparing false evidence.

2.2. Intent to produce false evidence in a legal proceeding

Another key way in which the crime of preparing false evidence is broader than the crime of offering false evidence is that you can be convicted of the former even if the evidence was never offered in court...or if it was, but by someone other than you.

However, you can't be convicted of violating Penal Code 134 PC unless you actually intended for the false evidence you prepared to be produced in a legal proceeding.28 If the prosecutor can't prove that this was actually your intent, you can't be found guilty.

Example: Let's say Sam, from our last example, wants to change the date stamp on his photo but doesn't know how. He calls his friend Mark, who's a computer expert, and asks him to help. Mark changes the date stamp for him.

Mark has just prepared false evidence for Sam. But Sam did not tell Mark why he wanted his help, and Mark doesn't know that Sam plans to use the photo with the fake date at his criminal trial. So Mark can't be guilty of the crime of preparing false evidence, because he didn't intend to have the photo submitted in court.

2.3. Fraudulent or deceptive purpose

The last element of the crime of preparing false evidence is that you had a "fraudulent or deceptive purpose"-meaning that you have to have actually intended to fool or deceive someone with the false evidence.

Example: Mary is a sixteen-year-old juvenile who has been arrested for shoplifting. As part of the juvenile delinquency proceeding against her, she is asked to give the address where she lives. Mary is not taking the process seriously at all, and she gives the address of the White House, where the President of the United States lives.

Mary obviously meant to play a joke by giving a false address. Because she didn't mean to actually deceive anyone, she is probably not guilty of preparing or submitting false evidence.
3. Legal defenses against charges of offering or preparing false evidence

Charges of submitting false evidence (Penal Code 132 PC) or preparing false evidence (Penal Code 134 PC) in California are quite serious. Luckily, there is no shortage of potential legal defenses to these charges. An experienced California criminal defense attorney can help determine which defenses will be most helpful in an individual case.

Several examples of defenses are:

3.1. Mistake of fact

As we discussed above, you can't be convicted of offering false evidence unless you knew the evidence was false.29 Because of this, the common legal defense of mistake of fact can be useful in fighting these charges.

According to Rancho Cucamonga criminal defense lawyer Nicole Valera30:

"Let's say you were mistaken about an important fact, and because of this you didn't know the evidence was false. If your mistake was reasonable, you may be able to use this to prove that you didn't have knowledge, which is the required state of mind to be guilty of offering false evidence."

3.2. Lack of intent

Similarly, you can't be convicted of violating Penal Code 134 PC (preparing false evidence) unless you had the required state of mind...that is, intent to submit the false evidence in a legal proceeding (or have someone else do it), and intent to deceive someone by submitting it.31

Intent is not always easy for prosecutors to prove. Many people who get involved in court cases or other legal proceedings are confused and overwhelmed by the incredible amount of paper and documents involved. If this happened to you, you may be able to show that you did not have the required intent to be convicted on false evidence charges.

3.3. Entrapment

In false evidence cases, California entrapment laws can also be a helpful legal defense.

Entrapment happens when someone in law enforcement (like a police officer or prosecutor) induces a normally law-abiding person to commit a crime s/he otherwise would not have committed, by using methods like harassment, flattery, or threats.32

Entrapment is most likely to lead to false evidence charges in situations involving criminal charges against more than one defendant.

For example, let's say you are accused of being involved in drug trafficking with a well-known drug lord. The prosecutor really wants to get a conviction of the drug lord...and so might use the threat of lighter charges against you to get you to help produce or prepare false or misleading evidence that will lead to the drug lord's conviction. This kind of prosecutorial misconduct is all too common. If you are later charged with offering or preparing false evidence, the entrapment defense may help you fight the charges.

4. Penalties for offering false evidence or preparing false evidence

Offering or preparing false evidence, no matter how minor, is a felony in
California law
in California.33

This means that, if you are convicted of violating Penal Code 132 PC or 134 PC, you may be sentenced to sixteen (16) months, two (2) years, or three (3) years in California state prison.34 However, at the judge's discretion, you also may be instead be sentenced to probation with up to one (1) year in county jail, a fine, or both.35

5. Related Offenses

5.1. Destroying evidence (Penal Code 135 PC)

Another common obstruction of justice crime is destroying evidence. You may be charged under Penal Code 135 PC, California's law against destroying evidence, if you intentionally destroy or hide evidence that you know may be presented in any kind of legal proceeding.36 Penal Code 135 PC covers actions like flushing narcotics down a toilet in order to prevent them from being used as evidence.37

The crime of destroying or concealing evidence is a misdemeanor in California.38 The maximum penalty is up to six (6) months in county jail, a fine of up to one thousand dollars ($1,000), or both39.

5.2. Planting evidence (Penal Code 141 PC)

Another form of criminal obstruction of justice crime is planting evidence per Penal Code 141 PC. This crime occurs when someone takes real evidence and moves or alters it in a way that can lead to someone else being wrongly charged with a crime, or false evidence wrongly being presented as true.40 The classic case of evidence planting would be someone placing evidence of criminal activity (like illegal drugs or a gun) in the car or home of their enemy in order to get them arrested.

Planting evidence is a misdemeanor for most defendants. The maximum penalty is up to six (6) months in county jail, a fine of up to one thousand dollars ($1,000), or both.41

However, if a law enforcement officer plants or fabricates evidence, the offense is a felony, and the maximum penalty is two (2), three (3) or five (5) years in state prison.42

5.3. Forgery

Forgery is the crime of signing someone's name without their permission , or knowingly changing or creating a written document, with the intent to commit a fraud.43 It is a so-called "wobbler" offense, which means that it can be charged as either a misdemeanor or a felony in California.

If you commit the crime of offering false evidence or preparing false evidence...AND the false evidence involved was a written document that you changed or created...you may also be charged with forgery. To be convicted of forgery, you must have specifically intended to defraud with the forged document.44

5.4. Perjury

Another crime that can be charged along with offering or preparing false evidence is California perjury law (Penal Code 118)-that is, lying under oath. You commit
perjury when you willfully say something false when testifying in court or in a lawsuit-related deposition, or in a sworn legal document.45

So, for example, if you submit false evidence in a court proceeding and then testify in court that it is not false, you could be charged both with offering false evidence under Penal Code 132 PC (for submitting the evidence in the first place) and with perjury (for lying about it under oath). Perjury is a felony under Penal Code 118 and can lead to a sentence of two (2), three (3) or four (4) years in jail.46

Call us for help...
Img-false-id-help

If you or loved one is charged with Penal Code 132 & 134 PC preparing false evidence and you are looking to hire an attorney for representation, we invite you to contact us at Shouse Law Group. We can provide a free consultation in office or by phone. We have local offices in Los Angeles, the San Fernando Valley, Pasadena, Long Beach, Orange County, Ventura, San Bernardino, Rancho Cucamonga, Riverside, San Diego, Sacramento, Oakland, San Francisco, San Jose and throughout California.

If you've been arrested in Nevada, please see our page on Nevada law re offering false evidence.

Legal References:

1Penal Code 132 PC - Offering forged, altered, or ante-dated book, document, or record. ("Every person who upon any trial, proceeding, inquiry, or investigation whatever, authorized or permitted by law, offers in evidence, as genuine or true, any book, paper, document, record, or other instrument in writing, knowing the same to have been forged or fraudulently altered or ante-dated, is guilty of felony.")

2Penal Code 134 PC - Preparing false documentary evidence. ("Every person guilty of preparing any false or ante-dated book, paper, record, instrument in writing, or other matter or thing, with intent to produce it, or allow it to be produced for any fraudulent or deceitful purpose, as genuine or true, upon any trial, proceeding, or inquiry whatever, authorized by law, is guilty of felony.")

3 People v. Bamberg, (2009) 175 Cal.App.4th 618, 621-24 (the defendant was convicted of violating Penal Code 134 PC in a proceeding to contest a ticket for running a stop sign).

4 Penal Code 132 PC - Offering false evidence; Penal Code 134 PC - Preparing false evidence.

5 Penal Code 18(a) PC - Punishment for felony not otherwise prescribed; alternate sentence to county jail. ("(a) Except in cases where a different punishment is prescribed by any law of this state, every offense declared to be a felony is punishable by imprisonment for 16 months, or two or three years in the state prison unless the offense is punishable pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170.")

6 Penal Code 132 PC - Offering false evidence. ("Every person who upon any trial, proceeding, inquiry, or investigation whatever, authorized or permitted by law, offers in evidence, as genuine or true, any book, paper, document, record, or other instrument in writing, knowing the same to have been forged or fraudulently altered or ante-dated, is guilty of felony.")

7 People v. Morrison, (2011) 191 Cal.App.4th 1551, 1555. ("Section 134 provides that a person is guilty of a felony if he or she (1) prepares a false matter or thing, (2) with intent to produce it, or allow it to be produced as true upon any trial, proceeding, or inquiry, whatever, authorized by law, (3) for any fraudulent or deceitful purpose.") (internal quotation marks omitted).

8 Our California criminal defense attorneys have local Los Angeles law offices in Beverly Hills, Burbank, Glendale, Lancaster, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Pasadena, Pomona, Torrance, Van Nuys, West Covina, and Whittier.  We have additional law offices conveniently located throughout the state in Orange County, San Diego, Riverside, San Bernardino, Ventura, San Jose, Oakland, the San Francisco Bay area, Sacramento, and several nearby cities.

9 Penal Code 132 PC - Offering false evidence. ("Every person who upon any trial, proceeding, inquiry, or investigation whatever, authorized or permitted by law, offers in evidence, as genuine or true, any book, paper, document, record, or other instrument in writing, knowing the same to have been forged or fraudulently altered or ante-dated, is guilty of felony.")

10 Same.

11 People v. Geibel, (1949) 93 Cal.App.2d 147, 169-70. ("In the instant case there is evidence that the will was offered for probate by appellant or at his behest, and at the hearing on the petition for admission to probate of the will, appellant appeared not only as one of the attorneys for the petitioner, but there testified as to the execution of the will and the genuineness of the disputed signature of the testator. The document was examined by the court, and was the subject of expert testimony and legal argument. We are persuaded that such use of the instrument constitutes an offering in evidence within the meaning of the code section [on offering false evidence].")

12 People v. Bhasin, 176 Cal.App.4th 461, 463-64 (2009).

13 People v. Hooper, (1935) 10 Cal.App.2d 332, 334.

14 Penal Code 134 PC - Preparing false evidence. ("Every person guilty of preparing any false or ante-dated book, paper, record, instrument in writing, or other matter or thing, with intent to produce it, or allow it to be produced for any fraudulent or deceitful purpose, as genuine or true, upon any trial, proceeding, or inquiry whatever, authorized by law, is guilty of felony.")

15 People v. Pereira, (1989) 207 Cal.App.3d 1057, 1067. ("Manifestly, the scope of section 132 extends beyond those situations involving the formal introduction in evidence of documents in a court of law.")

16 People v. Bhasin, 176 Cal.App.4th 461, 468 (2009). ("The fact that defendant gave the RDF to his attorney, it was used in cross-examination of Ferguson, it was read into the record, and it was marked for identification by defendant clearly was an offer of evidence within the meaning of section 132. The fact that the prosecution sought to move the RDF into evidence (without objection from defendant's counsel) was not imperative to a conviction of section 132. There simply is no requirement that a document must be moved into evidence in order to constitute a violation of section 132.")

17 Penal Code 132 PC - Offering false evidence.

18 People v. Bamberg, (2009) 175 Cal.App.4th 618, 621-24.

19 Loosely based on People v. Clark, 72 Cal.App.3d 80, 85 (1977). ("Rather, the plain import of the terms 'authorized by law' is to include proceedings and inquiries held pursuant to legislative authority, here Education Code section 24315.")

This case actually concerned Penal Code 134 PC (preparing false evidence), not Penal Code 132 PC (offering false evidence). But the language in Penal Code 132 PC ("upon any trial, proceeding, inquiry, or investigation whatever, authorized or permitted by law") is broader than that in Penal Code 134 PC ("upon any trial, proceeding, or inquiry whatever, authorized by law"), and so the reasoning in this case applies to Penal Code 132 PC cases as well.

20 People v. Bamberg, (2009) 175 Cal.App.4th 618, 621-24.

21 Penal Code 132 PC - Offering false evidence. ("Every person who upon any trial, proceeding, inquiry, or investigation whatever, authorized or permitted by law, offers in evidence, as genuine or true, any book, paper, document, record, or other instrument in writing, knowing the same to have been forged or fraudulently altered or ante-dated, is guilty of felony.") (emphasis added)

22 Same. See also Penal Code 7 PC. ("5. The word 'knowingly' imports only a knowledge that the facts exist which bring the act or omission within the provisions of this code. It does not require any knowledge of the unlawfulness of such act or omission.")

23 Penal Code 134 PC - Preparing false evidence.

24 People v. Bamberg, (2009) 175 Cal.App.4th 618, 621-24.

25 Based on People v. Morrison, 191 Cal.App.4th 1551, 1553-54 (2011).

26 People v. Bamberg, (2009) 175 Cal.App.4th 618, 628. ("The photographs are 'false [evidence]' because they were offered as 'genuine and true' depictions of something other than what they actually represent.")

27 Penal Code 134 PC - Preparing false evidence. ("Every person guilty of preparing any false or ante-dated book, paper, record, instrument in writing, or other matter or thing, with intent to produce it, or allow it to be produced for any fraudulent or deceitful purpose, as genuine or true, upon any trial, proceeding, or inquiry whatever, authorized by law, is guilty of felony.") (emphasis added)

28 People v. Morrison, (2011) 191 Cal.App.4th 1551, 1555. ("Section 134 provides that a person is guilty of a felony if he or she (1) prepares a false matter or thing, (2) with intent to produce it, or allow it to be produced as true upon any trial, proceeding, or inquiry, whatever, authorized by law, (3) for any fraudulent or deceitful purpose.") (emphasis added) (internal quotation marks omitted)

29 Penal Code 132 PC - Offering false evidence.

30 Rancho Cucamonga criminal defense lawyer Nicole Valera handles all types of misdemeanor and felony cases in California criminal courts, including the Rancho Cucamonga courthouse, the Fontana courthouse, and the Chino courthouse.

31 People v. Morrison, (2011) 191 Cal.App.4th 1551, 1555. ("Section 134 provides that a person is guilty of a felony if he or she (1) prepares a false matter or thing, (2) with intent to produce it, or allow it to be produced as true upon any trial, proceeding, or inquiry, whatever, authorized by law, (3) for any fraudulent or deceitful purpose.")

32 People v. Barraza, (1979) 23 Cal.3d 675, 689. ("For all the foregoing reasons we hold that the proper test of entrapment in California is the following: was the conduct of the law enforcement agent likely to induce a normally law-abiding person to commit the offense?")

See also People v. West, (1956) 139 Cal.App.2d Supp. 923, 924. ("Entrapment is the conception and planning of an offense by an officer and his procurement of its commission by one who would not have perpetrated it except for the trickery, persuasion, or fraud of the officer. Persuasion or allurement must be used to entrap.")

33 Penal Code 132 PC - Offering false evidence; Penal Code 134 PC - Preparing false evidence.

34 Penal Code 18 PC - Punishment for felony not otherwise prescribed; alternate sentence to county jail. ("(a) Except in cases where a different punishment is prescribed by any law of this state, every offense declared to be a felony is punishable by imprisonment for 16 months, or two or three years in the state prison unless the offense is punishable pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170.")

35 Same. ("(b) Every offense which is prescribed by any law of the state to be a felony punishable by imprisonment or by a fine, but without an alternate sentence to the county jail for a period not exceeding one year, may be punishable by imprisonment in the county jail not exceeding one year or by a fine, or by both.")

36 Penal Code 135 PC - Destroying or concealing documentary evidence. ("Every person who, knowing that any book, paper, record, instrument in writing, or other matter or thing, is about to be produced in evidence upon any trial, inquiry, or investigation whatever, authorized by law, willfully destroys or conceals the same, with intent thereby to prevent it from being produced, is guilty of a misdemeanor.")

37 See People v. Fields, (1980) 105 Cal.App.3d 341.

38 Penal Code 135 PC.

39 Penal Code 19 PC - Punishment for misdemeanor; punishment not otherwise prescribed. ("Except in cases where a different punishment is prescribed by any law of this state, every offense declared to be a misdemeanor is punishable by imprisonment in the county jail not exceeding six months, or by fine not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by both.")

40 Penal Code 141 PC - Peace officers; intentional alteration of physical matter with intent to charge person with a crime; felony. ("(a) Except as provided in subdivision (b), any person who knowingly, willfully, and intentionally alters, modifies, plants, places, manufactures, conceals, or moves any physical matter, with specific intent that the action will result in a person being charged with a crime or with the specific intent that the physical matter will be wrongfully produced as genuine or true upon any trial, proceeding, or inquiry whatever, is guilty of a misdemeanor.")

41 Same.

42 Same. ("(b) Any peace officer who knowingly, willfully, and intentionally alters, modifies, plants, places, manufactures, conceals, or moves any physical matter, with specific intent that the action will result in a person being charged with a crime or with the specific intent that the physical matter will be wrongfully produced as genuine or true upon any trial, proceeding, or inquiry whatever, is guilty of a felony punishable by two, three, or five years in the state prison.")

43 Penal Code 470 PC - Forgery; signatures or seals; corruption of records. ("(a) Every person who, with the intent to defraud, knowing that he or she has no authority to do so, signs the name of another person or of a fictitious person to any of the items listed in subdivision (d) is guilty of forgery. (b) Every person who, with the intent to defraud, counterfeits or forges the seal or handwriting of another is guilty of forgery. (c) Every person who, with the intent to defraud, alters, corrupts, or falsifies any record of any will, codicil, conveyance, or other instrument, the record of which is by law evidence, or any record of any judgment of a court or the return of any officer to any process of any court, is guilty of forgery. (d) Every person who, with the intent to defraud, falsely makes, alters, forges, or counterfeits, utters, publishes, passes or attempts or offers to pass, as true and genuine, any of the following items, knowing the same to be false, altered, forged, or counterfeited, is guilty of forgery: any check, bond, bank bill, or note, cashier's check, traveler's check, money order, post note, draft, any controller's warrant for the payment of money at the treasury, county order or warrant, or request for the payment of money, receipt for money or goods, bill of exchange, promissory note, order, or any assignment of any bond, writing obligatory, or other contract for money or other property, contract, due bill for payment of money or property, receipt for money or property, passage ticket, lottery ticket or share purporting to be issued under the California State Lottery Act of 1984, trading stamp, power of attorney, certificate of ownership or other document evidencing ownership of a vehicle or undocumented vessel, or any certificate of any share, right, or interest in the stock of any corporation or association, or the delivery of goods or chattels of any kind, or for the delivery of any instrument of writing, or acquittance, release or discharge of any debt, account, suit, action, demand, or any other thing, real or personal, or any transfer or assurance of money, certificate of shares of stock, goods, chattels, or other property whatever, or any letter of attorney, or other power to receive money, or to receive or transfer certificates of shares of stock or annuities, or to let, lease, dispose of, alien, or convey any goods, chattels, lands, or tenements, or other estate, real or personal, or falsifies the acknowledgment of any notary public, or any notary public who issues an acknowledgment knowing it to be false; or any matter described in subdivision (b).")

44 People v. Neder, (1971) 16 Cal.App.3d 846. ("The real essence of the crime of forgery, however, is not concerned with the end, i.e., what is obtained or taken by the forgery; it has to do with the means, i.e., the act of signing the name of another with intent to defraud and without authority, or of falsely making a document, or of uttering the document with intent to defraud.")

45 Penal Code 118 PC - Perjury defined; evidence necessary to support conviction. ("(a) Every person who, having taken an oath that he or she will testify, declare, depose, or certify truly before any competent tribunal, officer, or person, in any of the cases in which the oath may by law of the State of California be administered, willfully and contrary to the oath, states as true any material matter which he or she knows to be false, and every person who testifies, declares, deposes, or certifies under penalty of perjury in any of the cases in which the testimony, declarations, depositions, or certification is permitted by law of the State of California under penalty of perjury and willfully states as true any material matter which he or she knows to be false, is guilty of perjury. This subdivision is applicable whether the statement, or the testimony, declaration, deposition, or certification is made or subscribed within or without the State of California.")

46 Penal Code 126 PC - Punishment. ("Perjury is punishable by imprisonment pursuant to subdivision (h) of Section 1170 for two, three or four years.")

Free attorney consultations...

Our attorneys want to hear your side of the story. Contact us 24/7 to schedule a FREE consultation with a criminal defense lawyer. We may be able to get your charges reduced or even dismissed altogether. And if necessary, we will champion your case all the way to trial.

Regain peace of mind...

Our defense attorneys understand that being accused of a crime is one of the most difficult times of your life. Rely on us to zealously and discreetly protect your rights and to fight for the most favorable resolution possible.

Office Locations

Shouse Law Group has multiple locations all across California and Nevada. Click Office Locations to find out which office is right for you.

Call us 24/7 (888) 327-4652