If you were charged with a federal crime, you need the best defense to protect your freedom. The federal criminal justice system can be intimidating, and you need a federal criminal attorney defending you in Court. Kontos Law is here to help you if you were wrongly accused of a federal crime that you did not commit. Were you told by law enforcement, detective, or investigating officer that you are under federal investigation? If the FBI, DEA, Health and Human Services Department, DOJ, or other federal organization says that a case has been opened against you it is time to call our criminal defense law firm so we can start building your defense. Contact Kontos Law for a free consultation and to learn more about your legal options and possible defense strategies.
You should know that finding an attorney experienced with federal cases and the federal Courts in Texas is of the utmost importance. Your defense counselor will discuss your case and possible defense strategies with you, along with any known evidence and the federal investigative process that in many cases spans several years. Our defense counselors will also explain the possible punishment for a conviction, including prison time so you understand the severity of the federal charges. Our law firm does not discuss these things with you to alarm you, we believe that treating clients with honesty and integrity is the right thing to do.
Federal criminal charges encompass a wide range of offenses, from violent crimes such as interstate kidnapping to white collar crimes such as mail fraud. The following is a list of some of the more common federal crimes:
While state-level crimes are generally investigated by local police departments, country sheriff departments or state investigative agents, investigation into federal crimes is handled by a wide range of federal agencies including the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Department of Homeland Security, the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), Border Patrol, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), the Postal Service, the Health and Human Services Department and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (ATF).
The federal agency conducting the investigation varies depending on the nature of the crime; for example, the IRS investigates tax fraud while the Health and Human Services Department handles Medicaid and Medicare abuse. In certain cases, multiple federal agencies may participate in a single investigation, such as for identity theft.
If the appropriate federal agency finds enough evidence to justify a federal criminal charge, the case is prosecuted in federal court by an Assistant U.S. Attorney. In general, federal cases take longer than state-level cases due to the relatively small number of federal prosecutions each year.
If you are under investigation or facing criminal charges for any crime–state or federal–hiring a skilled and experienced attorney is key. However, when facing federal charges, the importance can be even greater.
Why don’t most defense attorneys have experience with federal cases?
There are many fewer federal criminal prosecutions than state criminal prosecutions; in any given year, federal courts process a million cases, while state courts face 30 times the number of prosecutions. Because there are less federal cases, fewer lawyers have experience with federal courts and procedure than with state courts. Since the differences between the rules and regulations in the two types of court can be significant, choosing a lawyer who has a track record of representing clients in federal court is crucial.
Can a Federal Judge Reduce Sentencing Terms?
No. Most federal crimes carry mandatory minimum sentences, and federal judges are bound to follow these sentencing guidelines. In general, these guidelines are much stricter than state-level minimums, meaning that federal defendants who are found guilty are likely to face significantly longer sentences than state defendants.
Can a Plea Deal be Overturned by a Federal Judge?
Yes, and it happens often because federal judges are not bound to following certain sentencing considerations included in plea deals made between federal prosecutors and the defense.
Together, the possibility of harsh sentencing underscores the importance of obtaining representation from a knowledgeable attorney with a background in federal criminal defense.