Quantico Teaches Marines To Improvise, Adapt, And Sometimes Violate the UCMJ If Needed

We realize that somewhere a Marine officer trained at Quantico just spit out his coffee or whiskey after reading that headline, but it’s true. Perhaps not in the literal sense as Marine officers are indeed trained to uphold the UCMJ and ensure military discipline carries on. However, it has been our experience that combat ready Marines cannot simply turn off their mandate to improvise and adapt just because the UCMJ says something is off limits. For instance, your average Marine officer would tell you that misappropriating a machine gun intended for use on an aircraft and modifying it to one’s own purpose is a bad thing. Well, those officers clearly never heard of Medal of Honor recipient Tony Stein.
Having already distinguished himself in combat at Bouganville, Corporal Stein found himself awaiting the coming invasion of Iwo Jima on the island. That’s when he came across a crashed Douglas SBD Dauntless Bomber and saw a unique opportunity to improvise and adapt. The bomber was equipped with an ANM2 machine gun and Stein took it upon himself to procure it. A tool maker prior to the war, Stein was able to equip the ANM2 with the stock and sights from an M1 Garand and the bipod from a BAR. The outcome was a weapon he named the “Stinger” that could fire .30 caliber rounds at a pace of 1200 – 1500 rounds per minute.
When Stein hit the beaches of Iwo Jima, the Stinger was by his side and he used it to perfection. Exposing himself to enemy fire and leading multiple one man charges, Stein took out multiple enemy positions alone. When the Stinger would run out of ammo due to the high rate of fire, he would simply kick off his boots for a speedier run to the beach for more rounds. Eventually wounded, Stein was evacuated to hospital ship, but not before his actions merited him the Medal of Honor.
Remarkably, though he had every right to call his war over, when he heard his unit was taking heavy casualties, he gave up his bed and returned to the fight. It was in the fight for hill 362A that a sniper’s bullet would mortally wound Stein and end his inexplicable gallantry. Stein did all of that with a misappropriated aircraft weapon and the sum of Marine Corps history saluted him for doing so.
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A Court Martial Defense That Considers The Whole Story

Unfortunately, it seems we live in a season of military history where careers are prioritized over a Marines call to adapt and overcome. The result is a military justice system that is quick to prosecute and penalize such innovation. Here at the Bilecki Law Group, we’ve defended both Marine officers and enlisted personnel who were exactly the type of Marines this nation would need if we ever returned to a battle the likes of Iwo Jima. Marines who are remarkably disciplined in the face of enemy fire and yet, understands when the UCMJ is more of a suggestion than a hard rule.
Now, this is not to disparage military discipline or the need to obey all lawful orders. Rather, it is just to say that the military justice system doesn’t always get it right. For those Marines, they will need a staunch defense and a willingness to take the fight all the way to trial in order to defend their name and their honor. Every Marine facing a court martial rightfully earned the title of United States Marine and we believe that they are more than the sum of the charges against them.

What Types of UCMJ Charges Does The Bilecki Law Group Defend?

Sadly, we have yet to defend a Marine who misappropriated an aircraft weapon and used it to gift violence to the enemy. However, we have defended Marines for just about every charge under the sun and most importantly, we win far more often than we lose. In fact, we’d put our stats against any military court martial defense attorney in the industry. When we get into the courtroom, we have an aggressive style of defense that might be considered the legal equivalent of Stein’s Stinger. Below you’ll find the types of charges we defend and we are confident that you’ll see that even the most serious of charges fail to scare us off.
These cases can include rape, sexual assault, aggravated sexual assault, abusive sexual contact, sexual assault of a minor, indecent viewing, indecent recording, forcible pandering, indecent exposure, and other Article 120 and Article 120(c) offenses. Now, the military does indeed have a reckoning for how sexual assault has been handled in the past, but unfortunately, the wake of the reckoning is leading to allegations being treated as concrete fact. Innocent Marines do not deserve to have their careers, retirements, or freedom threatened as a result. If you are innocent, then fight and we’ll be glad to help you do so.
These cases can include rape, sexual assault, aggravated sexual assault, abusive sexual contact, sexual assault of a minor, indecent viewing, indecent recording, forcible pandering, indecent exposure, and other Article 120 and Article 120(c) offenses. Now, the military does indeed have a reckoning for how sexual assault has been handled in the past, but unfortunately, the wake of the reckoning is leading to allegations being treated as concrete fact. Innocent Marines do not deserve to have their careers, retirements, or freedom threatened as a result. If you are innocent, then fight and we’ll be glad to help you do so.
These cases can include rape, sexual assault, aggravated sexual assault, abusive sexual contact, sexual assault of a minor, indecent viewing, indecent recording, forcible pandering, indecent exposure, and other Article 120 and Article 120(c) offenses. Now, the military does indeed have a reckoning for how sexual assault has been handled in the past, but unfortunately, the wake of the reckoning is leading to allegations being treated as concrete fact. Innocent Marines do not deserve to have their careers, retirements, or freedom threatened as a result. If you are innocent, then fight and we’ll be glad to help you do so.
These cases can include rape, sexual assault, aggravated sexual assault, abusive sexual contact, sexual assault of a minor, indecent viewing, indecent recording, forcible pandering, indecent exposure, and other Article 120 and Article 120(c) offenses. Now, the military does indeed have a reckoning for how sexual assault has been handled in the past, but unfortunately, the wake of the reckoning is leading to allegations being treated as concrete fact. Innocent Marines do not deserve to have their careers, retirements, or freedom threatened as a result. If you are innocent, then fight and we’ll be glad to help you do so.
We defend cases such as conspiracy to defraud the military, BAH fraud, OHA fraud, extortion, larceny, wrongful appropriation, and more. It is an objective fact that Stein misappropriated an aircraft weapon. There is no doubt about the matter. However, when you see the full story, we understand what truly took place. By far, BAH fraud is some of the more common charges we see because there are not too many crashed bombers with weapons to misappropriate laying around stateside. However, there is still more to someone’s BAH story than charges would indicate. Please don’t admit guilt when you think you are “caught” because the rest of the story needs to be told as well.
We represent service members facing charges including murder, manslaughter, aggravated assault, assault, and cases involving self-defense and defense of another. Marines like to fight and that’s what makes them one of the greatest warrior classes in modern history. However, this too is not a switch one can easily turn on and off. Marines can find themselves in a great deal of trouble when what seems like a routing fight turns ugly. This often happens when a weapon such as a beer bottle, chair, or pool cue gets added into the mix. Once again, Marines are more than the sum of the charges levied against them. So, let’s get the whole story and represent the whole Marine.
We defend cases involving drug possession, drug distribution, drug importation, drug manufacturing, drug trafficking, positive urinalysis cases, tampering with urinalysis cases, and more. These cases often involve illegal controlled substances such as marijuana, LSD, methamphetamines, cocaine, ecstasy, molly, opioids, analogues, and more. This is one that trips up more Marines than we would like, but at some point this nation and its military is going to have to reconcile the fact that marijuana is legal in 19 states now. At some point, we are going to have to remember that Vietnam saw some of the most inexplicable acts of gallantry from Marines who were high as a kite when they did them. That’s not to condone drug use in the military, but it is to suggest that there is more to this story and these charges as well.
These include charges such as fraternization, unauthorized absence (AWOL), disobeying a lawful order, conduct unbecoming an officer, and much more. Much like in World War 2, a great deal of routine violations of military discipline can be overlooked in combat. Unfortunately, right now we are in a quasi-peace time military and that often means silly charges against the very Marines that you would want right beside you in a fight. So, let’s fight those charges to keep you in the fight that matters.

Fight Back Against The Misapplication of the UCMJ

Here at the Bilecki Law Group, we specialize in at-trial court martial representation. That’s because we understand that the military justice system really doesn’t want the charges to go to trial. You have to remember that military prosecutors are officers looking out for their own careers as well. As such, they will avoid losing at any cost and they hate losing at trial. That’s why military prosecutors are not very fond of us as well.
There is always more to the story and the gallant acts of Corporal Tony Stein are just one classic example of this paradigm. If you are under investigation or facing a court martial, you need to ensure the entire story is told. You need to fight for your right to remain in the fight for this nation’s freedom. Fortunately, fighting is what you Marines do best.
Reach out to us and we’ll give you a free consultation where we’ll shoot you straight on exactly what you’re facing. Namesake Tim Bilecki spent years as a senior defense counsel for the Army and has spent over a decade after that a civilian defense counsel. He knows first hand what you are facing and that’s why members of the military will fly Tim in from all over the world to fight for them in a court martial. Don’t assume your career is over and please don’t abdicate your freedom without a fight. Continue the Marine’s call to improvise, adapt, and overcome. Here’s a salute to Corporal Tony Stein and to every Marine who refuses to give up the fight.

Don’t just plead guilty… Fight Back !

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