James L. Strickland paid an unsolicited $2,500 bribe to Judge Sylvania W. Woods so that the judge would be lenient on a friend of Stricklandís who had a case pending before Judge Woods. Paying a bribe to a government official is a crime. Judge Woods reported the incident and turned the money over to the stateís attorney general. The state of Maryland indicted Strickland for bribery and sentenced him to four years in prison. Strickland filed a motion to recover the $2,500 from the state. Can Strickland recover the money?
1 Answer from Attorneys
This question is posted as a Missouri inquiry, and in Missouri the answer would be NO. The bribe is considered fruits or instrumentalities of a crime. The only way he could recover it is if he is found not guilty. Otherwise, it goes to the state which would file a motion to seize the money and said motion will be granted.
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