Many of our clients contact an attorney because they are advised (or find out) that there is an ongoing investigation into potential federal criminal law violations revolving around them or their companies. While most criminal charges begin with an arrest, many people are brought into the criminal process when they are approached by federal law enforcement officers or threatened with criminal charges by way of a letter sent to them from the United States Attorney’s Office. These individuals are considered federal grand jury targets – they are the “target” or “subject” of a federal criminal investigation.
Some people are also advised that they are considered a “witness” of an investigation, rather than the subject or target. In either situation, it is essential to have a federal criminal defense attorney who can lead you through the frightening and complex area of grand jury investigations. At this stage, you should contact a federal criminal defense attorney who practices in the location where you are being investigated in.
Experience shows that having an attorney get involved in the process as early as possible can frequently be beneficial. The attorney should be licensed to practice in the federal jurisdiction where the charges are being investigated and be familiar with the court system there as well as the Assistant United States Attorneys and federal agents in that location. Suffice it to say, and this cannot be overstated; no one should speak to the Government or any federal agent without an attorney. Many people believe that since they have nothing to hide, they should be able to speak freely to the Government freely. However, that action has frequently turned out to have a detrimental effect.
To discuss the federal criminal defense update, or criminal law more generally, reach out to New Jersey and New York criminal defense lawyer Lorraine Gauli-Rufo at 973-239-4300 or at LGR LAW for a consultation today. For more information about the firm, please visit LGR LAW’s website.