“Undue” Gifts for Public Employees: An Administrative and Criminal Law Analysis

Both administrative law and criminal law set limits on public employees’ acceptance of gifts or other privileges. The core rules in these two areas of the law are the same. The elements of the crime of bribery refer essentially to the administrative law’s rules on the acceptance of gifts. It is probably the same underlying standard that constitutes the measure for the extent to which public employees can accept gifts. However, criminal law may require additional security and clarification in the cause of action for liability. Acceptance of gifts in a number of cases can only be sanctioned under administrative law and not criminal law. This article will analyse these issues and will attempt to define the criteria for determining when the acceptance of gifts is impermissible under both administrative law and criminal law.

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