Madison criminal defense lawyer Robert T. Ruth defends individuals accused of perjury in Wisconsin courts. He has been a Wisconsin lawyer since 1993 and has devoted his law firm to criminal defense since then. He is well-versed in all aspects of criminal defense in Wisconsin and federal courts, from the initial stages of a case through direct appeal, petition for review or petition for certiorari and collateral attack. If you stand accused of perjury anywhere in Wisconsin, let his experience in the courtroom, along with his commitment to his clients, go to work for you.
Madison WI Perjury Defense Lawyer Attorney
Perjury in Wisconsin is a Class I felony, punishable by up to six years prison and up to a $10,000 fine. Most people understand that a perjury charge requires proof of a lie. It is important to note, however, that not just any lie, not even a lie in court, is necessarily perjury. To amount to perjury in Wisconsin the state must prove all of the following beyond a reasonable doubt:
That the defendant orally made a statement;
That the defendant was under oath or affirmation at the time the statement was made;
That the defendant did not believe that the statement was true at the time it was made;
That the statement was made in a proceeding before a court;
That the state was material to the proceeding.
If a person makes a sworn state in court that is wrong, but the person believes that the statement was true at the time it was made, it is not perjury in Wisconsin. If the person knew that the statement was false at the time it was made, however, a subsequent correction of the state is not a defense to perjury. For the purposes of the Wisconsin perjury law, a material statement is one which tends to prove or disprove any fact that is of consequence to the determination of the proceeding in which the statement is made. If a knowingly false statement is made in a court proceeding, but the statement is not material to the proceeding, it is not perjury under the WI criminal law. Under the WI perjury law, “court” is not limited to what most people consider a court. It includes all of the following:
(a) A court;
(b) A magistrate;
(c) A judge, referee or court commissioner;
(d) An administrative agency or arbitrator authorized by statute to determine issues of fact;
(e) A notary public while taking testimony for use in an action or proceeding pending in court;
(f) An officer authorized to conduct inquests of the dead;
(g) A grand jury;
(h) A legislative body or committee.
If you face a charge of perjury in Wisconsin, it is best to contact an experienced criminal defense attorney to review the case. Call Madison criminal lawyer Robert T. Ruth at 608-257-2540 for a free consultation.