This is the next post in my series on the handling of federal charges in the Southern District of Texas. My last article provided an overview of topics which this series will be addressing. It also stressed the need to immediately contact an attorney if you or a family member have been arrested. Federal Courts strictly follow their rules of procedure, so it is important to retain an attorney as soon as possible so that deadlines are not missed. In this article I will discuss the types of charges commonly brought in the federal system. If you or a family member are in need of assistance then contact us online or by telephone today.
Federal charges are typically brought due to an alleged violation of Title 18 of the US criminal code. There are several possible offenses which are “white collar” in nature. These include mail fraud, computer crimes, committing fraud against the US government, and more. There are also several forms of violent behavior which are criminalized at the federal level. These include bank robbery, possessing a firearm after having been convicted of a felony, assaulting federal employees, etc. Transporting large amounts of narcotics can also trigger the federal statutes and such cases often arise in Laredo due to our close proximity to the border. In short, there are a variety of matters which can fall under federal jurisdiction.
Some are under the mistaken belief that an illegal action has to cross state lines in order to trigger a federal statute. This is not the case. Being a felon in possession of a firearm, for example, is a violation of 18 USC 922 and applies throughout the United States; it does not only apply to felons who take guns across state lines. Likewise, transporting narcotics within a state can also trigger the federal statutes.
In addition to having separate criminal statutes, the federal system also has its own rules of evidence and procedure. While the rules must be followed in state courts, the federal system tends to be far less forgiving if a deadline is missed or if something is not properly handled. This can result in a defendant not being able to request the suppression of evidence, in evidence being ruled inadmissible, in not being able to utilize a necessary expert, and other such problems. In order to ensure that your case is handled properly, it is crucial that you ask your attorney about their experience in handling federal matters. Not all attorneys are licensed to practice in Federal Court and fewer have actually handled criminal matters brought by the US Department of Justice.
I am a Laredo federal defense lawyer who is licensed to practice in the Southern District of Texas. Once retained we will take immediate steps to protect your interests. This includes conducting a proper investigation, filing any necessary Motions, and taking other steps in furtherance of your case. My office prides itself on providing the highest level of service and we are proud of the results we have achieved for our clients. Contact us online or by telephone today to schedule an initial consultation.