Federal Crimes Defense in Atlanta
Experienced Legal Counsel for Federal Charges
Being investigated or charged for a federal crime can be scary. Federal sentences can mean significant time in federal prison and substantial fines. The weight of the federal government against you is a heavy burden. You need an attorney who understands federal law and the prosecutorial process.
If you are accused of federal criminal offenses in Atlanta, you need experienced legal representation right away. You need The Law Office of Ahmad R. Crews.
State vs. Federal Offenses
Federal crimes violate federal law and state crimes violate state law. Some crimes involve both federal and state offenses. Being charged or tried for both is not double jeopardy.
State legislatures have the authority to make laws about most things, but Congress makes laws that impact national interests. The U.S. Code defines the various federal crimes.
The federal government has jurisdiction in these cases:
- Crimes that occur on federal land or involve federal officers
- Crimes involving fraud on the federal government or a federal agency (mail fraud, tax fraud, or Medicaid fraud)
- Crimes where the defendant crosses state lines (taking drugs across state lines or taking a kidnapping victim from one state to another)
- Immigration or customs violations (including international human trafficking)
Some of the more common federal charges include the following:
- Money Laundering
- Weapons Charges
- Drug Trafficking
- Credit Card Fraud
- Internet Crimes
Retain aggressive legal representation for your federal criminal case. Schedule a free consultation with Attorney Crews by calling (404) 777-0735.
The Federal Criminal Process
The principles of federal prosecution outline the grounds for pursuing or declining prosecution, disclosing factual material to the defense, and considering plea agreements. The rulebook is followed by all U.S. attorneys and assistant U.S. attorneys.
The general steps in a federal prosecution include the following:
- Investigation: Federal agencies involved in the investigation varies depending on the alleged crime. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI); U.S. Secret Service; Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF); Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA); Environmental Protection Agency (EPA); Fish and Wildlife Service; Health and Human Services; Homeland Security Investigations; Internal Revenue Service (IRS); U.S. Marshals Service; U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE); and U.S. Postal Inspection Service investigate crimes related to their areas. Oftentimes, multiple agencies work together on the investigation.
- Grand Jury: This group of impartial citizens determines whether there is probable cause to believe a particular person committed a crime. The prosecution presents the evidence gathered to the group. The grand jury has the power to subpoena witnesses and take other actions related to the case before taking a secret vote on whether to indict the person.
- Arrests: If the grand jury determines the person should be indicted on the charges, an arrest warrant is issued. In certain circumstances, federal agents can make an arrest without a warrant.
- Initial Appearance: The arrestee’s first appearance must occur within 72 hours of the arrest. At that time, they are told of the charges and their right to counsel and to remain silent. The defendant may be released or kept in custody.
- Arraignment: The formal charges are told to the defendant, and they enter a plea. If a plea bargain has been negotiated, the defendant enters a plea of guilty.
- Discovery and Motion Practice: The defense counsel and prosecutors file motions. For example, the defense might file a motion to suppress evidence or to dismiss the charges. Each side can demand documentation and other information during the discovery process.
- Plea Bargaining: At any time, the government and the defendant can agree to a plea bargain. Plea bargains typically have the defendant plead guilty to a crime (not necessarily the original charge) in return for a reduced sentence. If the court accepts the agreement, a sentencing date will be set.
- Trial: Trials occur when charges are not dropped, there is no guilty plea, or plea bargain negotiations break down. Like other criminal trials, federal cases include opening arguments, presentation of evidence, closing arguments, jury instructions, and jury deliberations.
- Sentencing: A sentence is not handed down immediately after a guilty verdict. A probation officer investigates any aggravating or mitigating circumstances. They also speak with the victim and request information about expenses they incurred (medical bills, lost time at work, etc.) because of the crime. The probation officer then prepares a pre-sentence report for the judge.
- Appeals: A convicted person has the right to appeal to a circuit court of appeals. If those efforts fail, they can continue to appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, which may or may not choose to review the case.
Not all steps are involved in every case. Some cases never go beyond the investigative stage while others may conclude with a successful plea bargain. If you believe you are being investigated for a federal crime, contact Attorney Crews. Our legal team will immediately begin fighting for your rights with the goal of keeping a possible prison sentence off the table.
Penalties for Federal Crimes in Atlanta
Federal penalties are typically more severe than state consequences for similar crimes. Longer sentences and heftier fines are common.
Sentences are also served in different facilities. In state-level crimes, incarceration is typically spent in local jails or state prisons. Prison sentences for federal crimes are spent in federal prisons.
Sentencing is based on federal guidelines. All federal crimes are assigned a base level. The more serious the crime, the higher the level. After the base level is identified, special offense characteristics are examined. Depending on these characteristics, the base level can be elevated. For example, a bank robbery where a firearm is discharged will be given a higher level than if no shot was fired.
Other factors can also change the level of a crime, including the defendant’s criminal history. Like state penalties, there is a wide range. The lowest level offense has the possibility of up to 6 months in federal prison. A level 43 offense means life imprisonment.
- Supervised Release
Atlanta’s Strategic Federal Crimes Defense Attorney
There are many areas of legal experience. When you are being investigated for alleged federal crimes, you need an attorney with specific experience in federal cases. Criminal defense is our sole focus, including vigorously defending clients at the federal level.
If you are contacted by federal law enforcement agents, exercise your right to remain silent and contact us. From the investigative process forward, we are tenacious in defending your rights. Attorney Crews immediately begins to work to persuade prosecutors to drop the case. Some cases are tough to defend, but he battles for the best outcome possible for his client.Being investigated on federal charges? Don’t gamble on your future. Discuss your case with Attorney Crews. Schedule a free consultation by calling (404) 777-0735.
Clay County Superior Court Dismissed
Crisp County Superior Court Not Guilty
DeKalb County Superior Court Dismissed
Douglas County Superior Court Dismissed
Fulton County Superior Court Dismissed