1926. Possession of Counterfeit Government, Public, or Corporate Seal
The defendant is charged [in Count ______] with possessing a counterfeit (government/public/corporate) seal [or an impression of a counterfeit (government/public/corporate) seal].
To prove that the defendant is guilty of this crime, the People must prove that:
1. The defendant possessed a counterfeit seal [or an impression of a counterfeit seal] of (this state[,]/ [or] a legally authorized public officer[,]/ [or] a court of record[,]/ [or] a corporation[,]/ [or] a public seal legally authorized or recognized by any state, government, or country);
2. The defendant knew that the seal [or impression of the seal] was counterfeit;
3. The defendant willfully concealed the fact that the seal [or impression of the seal] was counterfeit;
4. When the defendant possessed the seal [or impression of the seal], (he/she) intended to defraud.
Someone commits an act willfully when he or she does it willingly or on purpose.
Someone intends to defraud if he or she intends to deceive another person either to cause a loss of (money[,]/ [or] goods[,]/ [or] services[,]/ [or] something [else] of value), or to cause damage to, a legal, financial, or property right.
[For the purpose of this instruction, a person includes (a governmental agency/a corporation/a business/an association/the body politic).]
[It is not necessary that anyone actually be defrauded or actually suffer a financial, legal, or property loss as a result of the defendant's acts.]
[Two or more people may possess something at the same time.]
[A person does not have to actually hold or touch something to possess it. It is enough if the person has (control over it/ [or] the right to control it), either personally or through another person.]
[The People allege that the defendant possessed the following items: <insert description of each seal or impression when multiple items alleged>. You may not find the defendant guilty unless you all agree that the People have proved that the defendant possessed at least one of these items and you all agree on which item (he/she) possessed.]
The court has a sua sponte duty to give this instruction defining the elements of the crime.
If the prosecution alleges under a single count that the defendant possessed multiple forged items, the court has a sua sponte duty to instruct on unanimity. (See People v. Sutherland (1993) 17 Cal.App.4th 602, 619, fn. 6 [21 Cal.Rptr.2d 752].) Give the last bracketed paragraph, inserting the items alleged. (See also Bench Notes to CALCRIM No. 3500, Unanimity, discussing when instruction on unanimity is and is not required.)
Give the bracketed sentence that begins with "For the purpose of this instruction" if the evidence shows an intent to defraud an entity or association rather than a natural person. (Pen. Code, § 8.)
Give the bracketed sentence that begins with "It is not necessary" if the evidence shows that the defendant did not succeed in defrauding anyone. (People v. Morgan (1956) 140 Cal.App.2d 796, 801 [296 P.2d 75].)
Elements. Pen. Code, § 472.
Intent to Defraud. People v. Pugh (2002) 104 Cal.App.4th 66, 72 [127 Cal.Rptr.2d 770]; People v. Gaul-Alexander (1995) 32 Cal.App.4th 735, 745 [38 Cal.Rptr.2d 176].
Intent to Defraud Entity. Pen. Code, § 8.
Unanimity Instruction If Multiple Items. People v. Sutherland (1993) 17 Cal.App.4th 602, 619, fn. 6 [21 Cal.Rptr.2d 752].
2 Witkin & Epstein, California Criminal Law (3d ed. 2000) Crimes Against Property, § 155.
4 Millman, Sevilla & Tarlow, California Criminal Defense Practice, Ch. 85, Submission to Jury and Verdict, § 85.02[a][i] (Matthew Bender).
6 Millman, Sevilla & Tarlow, California Criminal Defense Practice, Ch. 143, Crimes Against Property, § 143.04 (Matthew Bender).
Lesser Included Offenses
Attempted Possession of Counterfeit Seal. Pen. Code, §§ 664, 472.
(New January 2006)