Federal Criminal Defense

Though the general principles of criminal defense and trial skills are the same in a Federal criminal court as in a state court, the procedures both in the rules and the practice are quite different. Federal cases present unique dangers and opportunities.

Important Federal Court Considerations

  1. Federal Sentencing Guidelines – While there have been some positive changes in the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, they are still, in our opinion, grossly unjust. It is imperative that a defendant understand the Federal sentencing guidelines in their case. We can explain it to you in great detail.
  2. Federal Bail – Federal Court does not use bondsman. Rather, the options, are either a Property Bond, a Cash bond or a Signature Bond.
  3. Representation before Charges Are Filed – One of the opportunities many defendants miss is being represented during the pre-file stage before the Prosecutor files a Complaint or Indictment. There are four things an attorney can do at this stage:
    • Present your side of the story to try and get the charges reduced or dropped.
    • Negotiate for a pre-charging disposition. Often, it is more difficult to drop a count that may carry a harsher sentence once it is filed in court. Therefore, acting sooner rather than later can be a very good tactic.
    • For defendants who wish to do so, this is the best time to cooperate for a reduced sentence. This almost never happens in state court but is frequent in Federal Court.
    • Arrange for bail prior to arrest so there is no time spent in custody before the first court appearance or while waiting tot accomplish the sometimes complex paperwork for a Federal Bond.

What is a Federal Crime?

A federal crime is an offense that has been deemed as a federal crime in Federal Legislation. Crimes that have been committed on Federal property or Indian Reservations or impact interstate commerce are considered federal crimes. The Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Secret Service, Homeland Security Investigations, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, and the Internal Revenue’s Criminal Investigation Division are assigned to these federal crimes. Some of these crimes include:

  • Kidnapping
  • Tax Evasion
  • Counterfeiting
  • Felon in Possession of a Firearm
  • Carjacking
  • Mail fraud
  • Bank fraud
  • Insurance fraud
  • Wire fraud
  • Mortgage fraud
  • Money Laundering
  • Interstate Transportation of Stolen Vehicles
  • Federal drug crimes

If you are charged with any of these crimes you should acquire the services of an experienced federal attorney. The FBI, ATF, DEA, or another federal or local investigative agency, will aggressively pursue prosecution of any federal crimes, with extensive resources to investigate the crime and bring as much evidence against you as possible. To effectively fight back and protect your rights, you will need the assistance of a law firm that can equal the perseverance and dedication of the prosecution. Knowing the correct steps to take in fighting a federal crimes charge is crucial to your defense.