Legal Dictionary

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Bribery

A bribe is defined as anything of value or advantage, present or future, or any promise or undertaking to give any, asked, or accepted, with a corrupt intent to influence, unlawfully, the person to whom it is given, in his or her action, vote or opinion, in any public or official capacity. California Penal Code Section 7.

Bribery is giving someone (often an official or politician) something of value to encourage them to act or think or promise to act in a particular way. In other words, bribery is paying an official money in exchange for a favor. Bribery is considered a felony and a white collar crime. For example, Rep. Randy "Duke" Cunningham (California) is serving an eight-year prison term after pleading guilty in 2005 to taking $2.4 million in bribes in exchange for millions of dollars in government contracts.