The term ‘tampering with evidence’ is generally thrown about in courtrooms as well as in popular crime busting movies and TV shows. The term itself refers to a criminal offense where a person is involved in an act of altering, concealing, falsifying, or destroying crucial evidence with the intention of misleading an investigation being conducted by law enforcement agencies, governments or regulatory bodies. Being a criminal offense, the act is punishable by law in most jurisdictions across the country and the world.
In many instances, tampering with evidence is seen as a form of obstruction of justice. Many people who are charged with tampering with evidence are also charged with obstruction of justice as well. This should not come as a surprise because the main objective of tampering with evidence is usually to cover up a crime that has already been committed. Attempting to cover up a crime directly translates to perverting the course of justice.
However, ordinary citizens are not the only people who can be charged with the crime of tampering with evidence. In recent times, law enforcement officers have also found themselves being prosecuted under the same charges. Police officers have in the past being accused of tampering with civilian evidence as well as evidence proving police misconduct such as audio and video recordings. Such acts of altering or destroying evidence by police officers can are also seen as tampering with evidence.
More and more people are finding themselves being victims of this criminal offense. When a person be it a civilian or a law enforcement officer tampers with evidence, numerous individuals may suffer in various ways such as failure to get justice as well as wrongful conviction. When a crime cannot be proved due to lack of evidence, justice cannot prevail. Criminals are therefore not prosecuted as they should be and their victims are left to suffer. This should not be allowed to happen.
Police officers have also been known to lose crucial evidence necessary to convict criminals. These acts are also acts of tampering with evidence. Law enforcement officers may also collude with prosecution officers in court to alter or falsify evidence to their benefit. This is an illegal act which is also punishable by law. Anyone who may feel like they are a victim of this criminal offense should take up the necessary legal measures to ensure that their rights and freedoms are not violated.
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