It’s 6 a.m. or 8 p.m., your doorbell rings and two people are standing outside holding up their badges and credentials. They say they are Special Agents with the FBI or IRS and would like to talk with you for just a few minutes about something important. They ask if they could come in to [...]
U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland announced that the Department of Justice (DOJ) is planning a hiring spree to investigate and prosecute pandemic related fraud and traditional white collar crimes. President Biden’s budget seeks $3.5 million to hire an additional 120 prosecutors to focus on pandemic related fraud and $325 million for 900 additional FBI agents [...]
In addition to the 93 U.S. Attorney’s Offices around the country that investigate and prosecute health care fraud, the Fraud Section of the Department of Justice’s Criminal Division based in Washington D.C. has approximately 76 federal prosecutors devoted to such prosecutions. This DOJ Unit targets complex health care fraud involving illegal prescription, distribution and diversion [...]
When someone is being investigated or charged with a criminal offense, it is one of the most stressful and unnerving times of the person’s life. It is common to feel overwhelmed and uncertain about who to hire and what to ask in the initial consultation with a criminal defense attorney. Below are some tips on [...]
Lying to Federal Agents Can Lead to Serious Criminal Charges – Always Insist on Having an Attorney Present:
Typical scenario – early morning, FBI agents show up unannounced at your home or workplace wanting to speak with you. You are not under arrest, they are simply investigating something that you can help with. Maybe it’s about your employer, or friend, or something you were involved in with others. You are caught off-guard by [...]
Chief Financial Officers, Account Managers and bookkeepers all, to vary degrees, are trusted employees who have access to corporate funds. Access to company funds, with little or sporadic oversight, can leave a company vulnerable to a variety of fraudulent schemes to obtain funds those employees were not entitled to. Common schemes include: The trusted employee [...]
Around the country, a number of state and federal courts have started to use virtual grand juries to indict, and virtual juries for actual trials. If you are concerned that jurors involved in virtual processes may not represent a true cross section of the population, or that virtual hearings are inherently unfair, you are not alone.
Many federal, state, and municipal courts have limited the number and types of cases they will be handling in the near term. Some have adjourned jury trials for several weeks and in some cases even months to see what happens after a period of isolation. Courts have summarily waived Speedy Trial Act rights and ordered continuances for a period of time. State courts in particular are promoting the use of video and teleconferencing in lieu of appearing in court. Municipal courts have adjourned court appearances for motor vehicle summonses and code violations. Detention has been waived in certain cases depending on the type of crime, the age of the offender, and other relevant factors.
In many cases, defense attorneys utilize various experts to assist in their defense of a client. Those experts may include private investigators, forensic accountants, psychologists, DNA analysts, accident reconstruction analysis and economists. While experts can provide invaluable assistance in understanding the prosecution’s theory of the case and in analyzing and attacking the government’s evidence, special care must be taken to protect and preserve the attorney-client and work-product privileges.
After more than two years of careful research and deliberation, the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) released The Trial Penalty: The Sixth Amendment Right to Trial on the Verge of Extinction and How to Save It. The “trial penalty” refers to the substantial difference between the sentence offered prior to trial versus the sentence a defendant receives after a conviction at trial. This penalty is now so severe and pervasive that it has virtually eliminated the constitutional right to a trial. The report notes that to avoid the trial penalty, defendants must surrender fundamental rights which are essential to a fair justice system. The release of this report has garnered support from leading criminal justice reform entities, all of which agree that the incursion on the right to a trial poses a clear threat to justice.