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Punitive Articles of the UCMJ

Article 107—False official statements

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Text.

“Any person subject to this chapter who, with intent to deceive, signs any false record, return, regulation, order, or other official document, knowing it to be false, or makes any other false official statement knowing it to be false, shall be punished as a court-martial may direct.”

Elements.

(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.

Explanation.

(1) Official documents and statements. Official documents and official statements include all documents and statements made in the line of duty.

(2) Status of victim of the deception. The rank of any person intended to be deceived is immaterial if that person was authorized in the execution of a particular duty to require or receive the statement or document from the accused. The government may be the victim of this offense.

(3) Intent to deceive. The false representation must be made with the intent to deceive. It is not necessary that the false statement be material to the issue inquiry. If, however, the falsity is in respect to a material matter, it may be considered as some evidence of the intent to deceive, while immateriality may tend to show an absence of this intent.

(4) Material gain. The expectation of material gain is not an element of this offense. Such expectation or lack of it, however, is circumstantial evidence bearing on the element of intent to deceive.

(5) Knowledge that the document or statement was false. The false representation must be one which the accused actually knew was false. Actual knowledge may be proved by circumstantial evidence. An honest, although erroneous, belief that a statement made is true, is a defense.

Lesser included offense.

Article 80—attempts

Maximum punishment.

Dishonorable discharge, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and confinement for 5 years.

Next Article> Article 108-Military property of the United States-sale, loss, damage, destruction, or wrongful disposition >

Above Information from Manual for Court Martial, 2002, Chapter 4, Paragraph 31

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