Archived UCMJ Article 106: Spies

Note: Article 106 has been changed.

The content below is for the previous version for archive purposes only.

Here is information on the updated Article 106.

Any individual who uses false pretenses and deception to gather and deliver intelligence during wartime for an enemy of the United States may be charged with spying under Article 106 of the UCMJ.

Spying is one of the most serious offenses in the Uniform Code of Military Justice and if convicted, you may face the death sentence, with little hope of securing a lesser included offense or diminished form of punishment.

  • You could be sentenced to death simply for being in the wrong place, at the wrong time, with the wrong family history.
  • Family and friends will never know the truth if you are convicted. Most will be disgusted by the thought that you were capable of betraying your own country.

Under no circumstances should you allow yourself to be convicted for spying. Fighting back is your only possible recourse. And no defense attorneys fight back harder than Bilecki & Tipon.

What Is Article 106 of the UCMJ?

soldier texting on a smartphoneAll of the punitive articles of the UCMJ requires prosecutors to prove beyond a reasonable doubt a handful of critical assumptions—known as elements—to convict you of a crime. Article 106 contains five such elements within the text of the Manual for Court Martial:

  1. (1) That the accused was found in, about, or in and about a certain place, vessel, or aircraft within the control or jurisdiction of an armed force of the United States, or a shipyard, manufacturing or industrial plant, or other place of institution engaged in work in aid of the prosecution of the war by the United States, or elsewhere;
  2. (2) That the accused was lurking, acting clandestinely or under false pretenses;
  3. (3) That the accused was collecting or attempting to collect certain information;
  4. (4) That the accused did so with the intent to convey this information to the enemy; and
  5. (5) That this was done in a time of war

Summary of the Elements of Article 106: The government must prove that you intentionally and through false pretenses sought to gather and deliver intelligence for a state at war with the United States.

Military Defense Attorney for Article 106 of the UCMJ: Strategies and Tactics

Article 103 defines four unique criminal offenses, so the first step of any defense strategy is to narrow down the scope of the article and discover exactly what the prosecution is charging you with. Bilecki & Tipon will then further define your case by asking a few critical questions:

  • What was your intent upon visiting the wartime institution or military facility? Despite having acted in a clandestine way, was your objective more or less harmless in nature? The government must prove that you intentionally sought to convey intelligence to the enemy through your actions. But prosecutors must prove intent to do so. A secret visit to a family member, for example, would not be considered an act of spying.
  • Do you have known ties to an enemy state? Is there correspondence between you and a foreign government that prosecutors can show in court? You cannot be charged with spying without prosecutors first proving that a) you were collecting intelligence and b) you had a direct line of contact to an enemy state.

As a service member of the armed forces, you deserve a fair trial—NOT a witch hunt. Contact Bilecki & Tipon immediately to fight back against charges of spying, before it’s too late.

Experienced Military Defense Lawyers for Article 106 Charges

Bilecki & Tipon has tremendous experience helping service members fight back against wartime charges. Wartime offenses carry with them some of the harshest sentencing in military law—and spying is no exception. Hiring the most experienced court martial lawyers possible is not optional. It’s mandatory. And it could save your life.

Bilecki & Tipon will help you fight back against charges under Article 106: Spies

Frequently Asked Questions About Article 106

What Is the Maximum Possible Punishment for Article 106: Spies

Article 106 is one of a handful of criminal offenses under the UCMJ that carry with it a mandatory death sentence if convicted. Article 106 has no lesser included offenses. Your sentence cannot be mitigated. It is therefore imperative that you use every last resource available to you to exonerate yourself from all charges.

What Does the UCMJ Consider “Lurking” or Acting under “False Pretenses”?

The Manual for Court Martial differentiates between individuals who conceal themselves in a time of war to achieve their purposes and those who, through false pretenses, gather intelligence through spying.

An enemy combatant in occupied territory who is found to be relaying information to agents of the enemy would not be charged as a spy because he or she is not acting under false pretenses. But an individual who deceptively gains the trust of the U.S. armed forces and is found lurking in a restricted area in order to gather intelligence for the enemy could be found guilty.

Here is information on the updated Article 106.

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