UCMJ Article 107: False Official Statement

Article 107 IllustrationWhat is UCMJ article 107? Any attempt by a service member of the United States armed forces to intentionally falsify an official U.S. Military or Government statement or document while in the line of duty will be accused of falsifying an official statement under Article 107.

A conviction under this article could prove disastrous for the accused service member:

  • Even if you were unaware of the false statement at the time, you could face up to five years in prison, all for a single mistake.
  • You may be tossed out of the military with a dishonorable discharge. The embarrassment alone will be enough to never share your service with another living soul again.
  • The benefits, pay, and allowances you earned will be taken from you and your family.

Accusations of falsifying official statements could destroy your military career and civilian future. Fight back against your charges TODAY with the help of Bilecki & Tipon LLLC.

Elements of Article 107 of the UCMJ

Every article of the Uniform Code of Military Justice requires prosecutors to prove beyond a reasonable doubt a handful of critical assumptions—known as elements—to convict you of a crime. Four such elements are encountered under Article 107:

  1. That the accused signed a certain official document or made a certain official statement;
  2. That the document or statement was false in certain particulars;
  3. That the accused knew it to be false at the time of signing it or making it; and
  4. That the false document or statement was made with the intent to deceive

Summary

Prosecutors must prove that you signed an official document or made an official statement despite having prior knowledge that the document or statement in question was false or inaccurate.

Military Defense Attorney Services for Article 107 of the UCMJ

A man writing a statement on an official documentIf you’re being charged under Article 107, we can reasonably assume a few facts about your case. One, the U.S. government has some proof that the information found within a statement or document is false. And two, that you signed off on that statement or false document.

What they may not have is absolute proof that you made those false statements intentionally and deceptively. This will likely be where the majority of your case is fought, between the lines of what you did and did not know about the falsehoods found in the document or statement.

We understand what it takes to win Article 107 cases. We’ll begin by asking a few essential questions concerning your case:

  • Were you just trying to explain your side of the story to CID, NCIS or OSI and proclaim your innocence? Are you charged with a 107 offense in addition to a sexual assault offense? This is one of the common scenarios we see under the UCMJ. Where a service member waives his rights to an attorney, makes a statement to law enforcement, the statement is not incriminating, and the prosecutors charge you with a false official statement because they did not believe you. This scenario is all too common and we know how to fight against it.
  • What evidence does the government have to suggest you knew about the false statements, records, returns, regulations, etc.? How did you first learn about the false statements? Who did you speak with regarding the statement or document prior to its publication? We’ll review the full context surrounding your case and may pick up on information that the prosecution conveniently left out.
  • Do you have any previous criminal history, either civilian or military? Why would an otherwise upstanding member of the U.S. armed forces act deceptively in this particular case with no other past history of deception? We’ll fortify your reputation against a prosecution that seeks to brand you a common criminal in court.

Article 107 Sub-Articles

  • Article 107a: Parole, Violation Of – A conviction requires prosecutors to prove that you were currently on parole after serving time for another offense and that, while on said parole, you failed to adhere to its conditions, whether through action or inaction.
  • Article 107b: False Swearing – If you are a service member that has taken an oath or made a statement swearing to the truth of a certain matter, and you know it to be untrue at the time, you can be convicted under this article.

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Frequently Asked Questions About Article 107

What Is the Maximum Possible Punishment For False Official Statements?

If you are found guilty under Article 107 of the UCMJ, your sentence will not exceed:

  • Reduction to E-1
  • Forfeiture of all pay and allowances
  • Five years of confinement
  • A dishonorable discharge

Yo Honestly Believed You Made a True Statement. Can You Still Be Convicted?

Unfortunately, yes.

Even a simple mistake could lead to the government charging you under Article 107. Never assume that the truth will materialize in your court-martial. A trial is not about truth. It’s about advocacy. And hiring a defense attorney that knows how to protect your interests could be the most important decision you’ll ever make, saving not only your military career but your future as a civilian.

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