What to Look For When Hiring a Criminal Defense Lawyer

When you are forced to face a grim legal consequence which may involve jail term, probation or fines, you can't afford to go about handling your legal condition without the services of a Cincinnati criminal defense lawyer. You need to get the services of a lawyer who has the knowledge, experience and the reputation to handle your case with the prosecutors, judges and courts.

As soon as a person is released from jail on signature and cash bond, he must immediately prepare for his defense. The best way to prepare for the case is for the person to hire a qualified criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. The sooner you avail for the services of one the better for your chances at successful defense. In cases where you are still under investigation or if you have not been charged, you should immediately seek a legal counsel as it is your basic right.

There are essential guidelines that you should follow when searching for your defense lawyer.

1. Perform an online search for a qualified Cincinnati criminal defense attorney who is practicing in the location where you are facing criminal charges. Narrow your search by focusing those legal practitioners specializing in criminal cases.

2. Pick out the top three or four law firms for your choice of criminal defense lawyer. Screen the lawyer's credentials and track record. Verify his court experience in the court case that you are facing.

3. Visit the websites of the large and most renowned criminal defense associations and check the criminal defense lawyer's name. You should limit the search for your attorney to those who are affiliated of highly regarded lawyer's associations.

4. Check on the veracity of the claimed area of expertise of the criminal defense lawyer. You can also check the State journal site and local TV stations.

5. Lastly, visit or call the law firm to verify if they provide free initial consultation so that you can explore the possibilities for their firm representing you in your court case.

You should also consider the following when selecting your Cincinnati criminal defense attorney.

1. Check for published books, articles and treatises that were written by the lawyer. This is a strong evidence of the competence of your legal counsel.

2. Verify the number of outright acquittals won by the lawyer. This is a good proof not only on the expertise of the lawyer but also on the degree of preparation and overall court demeanor your lawyer.

3. Check on how your lawyer is regarded by his peers and his position in lawyer's associations.

4. If there is a referral for the lawyer from state bars, then you are assured of the competence and integrity of your criminal defense lawyer. You can check the website of the state bar to get the background information of your lawyer.

5. Check the feedback of legal experts and criminal law commentators. Watch local TV and radio shows that feature forums on criminal law. Citing and invitation of lawyer in these forums indicate his being highly regarded in the field of criminal law.

Lawyers Experienced in Dealing With Cases Involving Criminal Laws

Most of the cases involving crimes are closed without a solution. This is because a reliable proof cannot be produced against culprits in this regard. However, Sydney lawyers are way ahead of their counterparts in winning such cases. They have all the information that is required to prove that a person is the actual culprit. Approaching them is possible in an easy manner when one contacts a legal firm. These firms organize counseling sessions for the people who are in need of their services. People who fail to comply by the legal standards can be prosecuted on grounds of not abiding by the law.

The exhibits should be provided before the court of law so that the crime committed by a criminal can be proved. In order to provide solid proof, a lot of expertise should be displayed by the Sydney lawyers. In fact, most of them contain such a skill. Several cases in the past have been resolved without much ado because of the skills of lawyers in Sydney. Even after possessing all the qualities that are needed to win a case, they do not charge exorbitant fees unlike other legal firms. Having enough convincing skills is their forte.

It involves a lot of pressure when one is dealing with a criminal case. For example, some antisocial elements will come up with threatening calls and warnings that they might take up life. Dealing with all issues, Sydney lawyers have come up with flying colors in defending a case successfully. A thorough knowledge about criminal laws is what that is required in the initial phase. Negotiations will never work as it is the matter of a person's life. People believe that justice will be done to them when they approach any of the lawyers in Sydney as they have a proven past in dealing with such cases.

Whenever solid evidence has been produced against criminals, the chances of them escaping are narrowed. Sydney lawyers collect all such evidences and do proper homework before getting involved in the case. Professional attitude works to a maximum extent. Lawyers do understand the problems of those who get implicated illegally in such cases. Hence, it requires certain knowledge about psychology in order to assess the mentality of suspects. Evidences gathered at the scene of offence are crucial in determining the innocence of the accused. The advantage of hiring a lawyer of caliber will be proven only after a case has been won.

Before approaching a lawyer, one needs to have a basic understanding that what are the aspects that are covered by criminal laws. There might be some exceptions too. All these details can be obtained from an experienced lawyer belonging to an established legal firm. Such firms collect nominal fees from the needy and provide valuable legal services in Sydney. Checking through the criminal records will save a lot of time and help in the speedy trials of a case. However, most of the legal firms have access to the sources of criminals' profiles that will be handy in handling a case.

Criminal Defense Attorney - Importance Of Criminal Defense Lawyer Or Attorney

Normally, people want to avoid and wind up any criminal charges as soon as possible - and a criminal defense attorney is the best person to resort to for this purpose. Most of the people find the legal process difficult to grasp and proceeding with legal actions seems like an impossible task. Here is where the criminal attorneys come in.

It becomes their responsibility to explain the legal procedures and effects of every legal action that is to be taken along with fighting for their clients. These attorneys are the best means of strengthening oneself to proceed through legal action. A defense attorney also serves as criminal trial legal representative as they take care of how the trial procedures should be conducted. So, in which situations would you need to hire a defense attorney?

Functions Of A Criminal Defense Attorney

The main responsibility of a defense attorney involves representing his/her client who is alleged with committing any sort of crime. The primary job is questioning all the significant witnesses, gathering all possible facts and evidences besides asking questions during court trial periods. A defense lawyer can settle the case out of the court by negotiating with the prosecutors as well. Through negotiating with the prosecutors out of the court by the help of a criminal defense attorney, the illegal charges may result into a reduced one with decreased penalties and a lesser period of sentence.

Prospects Of Finding A Criminal Defense Lawyer

A criminal law attorney can make you understand the prospects of out of the court settlement and bargains. This way, you can decide whether you want to go for a bargain offer. Besides, an attorney can help you when you are accused with a crime in the following situations:

  • If you are arrested by the police, you can ask for your attorney to be called to the police station.
  • A lawyer will identify and explain to you the rights that you have after you are detained by the police.
  • An attorney can work for the arrangement of a bail for you to get you out of prison.
  • Your legal representative will explain and take all the necessary legal action.
  • Your attorney will give you the information on what is going to happen ahead, plan and work out the procedures accordingly.

If you cannot afford hiring a top-of-the-layer criminal defense attorney who charges extremely high fees for their experiences and services, do not worry. Just invest a little time in carrying out a research on online attorney to find a lawyer as per your budget. There websites provides comprehensive information on the fees and cases handled by them.

Criminal Law: A Critical Analysis of the Magistrate Court


The Magistrates' Courts play an extremely important role inside the criminal justice system within the United Kingdom. This brief article will assess the functions of the magistrates' court and evaluate the effectiveness of having a mechanism for determining the guilt of a defendant based solely on the discretion of the magistrates present. Before assessing the origins of the magistrate court, there will be a brief examination of what a magistrate is and what their functions are. Following from this, a brief insight into the origins of the magistrate court will be given, as it is important to understand the origins of any system as this will inform the reader of the initiative behind the original concept. After discussing the origins of the system, the procedure of appointment will then be discussed. This process will then be examined when the analysis is focused upon the procedures contained within the Magistrate court for assessing the guilt of a defendant. As a defendant will be denied a trail by jury, the system in place for the appointment of these magistrates is of paramount importance, as all individuals must be judged by their peers. If, after considering the evidence, the current system is deemed to be defective, then possible solutions will be considered to improve the present situation. The article will conclude that although the current system is far from perfect, it serves as a significant filter for more serious crimes which are tried in the Crown Court by a jury.

What is a Magistrate?

In the courts of England and Wales, it is the function of a magistrate to hear prosecutions for summary offences. They have the power to make orders in regard to and placing additional requirements on offenders. Magistrates' sentencing powers are limited compared to that of the Crown Court (See Criminal Law: A Critical Analysis of the Crown Court), extending to shorter periods of custody, fines, probation and community service orders, and a miscellany of other options. Magistrates hear committal proceedings for indictable offences, and establish whether sufficient evidence exists to pass the case to a higher court for trial and sentencing. Magistrates have power to pass summary offenders to higher courts for sentencing when, in the opinion of the magistrate, a penalty greater than can be given in magistrates court is warranted. The function of a magistrate is of great importance, but where did they originally come from?

Origins of the Magistrate Court

The origins of the magistrate system can be seen to have been initiated in the 12th century. Richard I (Richard the Lion heart) commissioned certain knights in England to keep the Kings peace in unruly areas. By the 14th century, a new phrase had been coined to describe individuals who had accepted the responsibility of keeping the peace. The title Justices of the Peace was initiated during the reign of Edward III and referred to 'good and lawful' men to be appointed in every county to 'guard the peace'. The magistrate system has evolved since its early inception and now deals with over 95% of all prosecuted crime and is responsible for handing out over £336m in financial penalties per year. (Source: Department for Constitutional Affairs [DCA]) If a magistrate is responsible for presiding over certain criminal cases, then there must be a proficient system in place to appoint these individuals.

The Appointment Process of Magistrates

The Municipal Corporations Act 1835 provided for Justices of the Peace to be nominated by the Lord Chancellor for the boroughs, in consultation with local advisers. The county benches, however, continued to be confirmed by the Lord Chancellor by way of the nomination of the Lord Lieutenants, who had their own methods for finding suitable candidates. The system was inadequate and was challenged by the Liberal Government in 1906 as there were too many conservatives sitting on the benches. Lord Loreburn, as Liberal Lord Chancellor, nominated 7,000 magistrates of whom 3,197 were Liberals. The Royal Commission on the Appointment of Justice of the Peace in 1910 recommended the institution of an Advisory committee system. A year later Advisory Committees on which Liberals and Conservatives were equally represented had been set up in most counties to advise Lord Lieutenants on nominations. A few years later the boroughs had also formed advisory committees. Originally, appointment to these committees was for life, however, in 1925, Lord Cave introduced appointment for 6 years and ordered half the committees to retire by rotation every three years. A magistrate can, however, still remove a person's liberty for criminal offences. If we are all to be judged by our peers, then a magistrate should be just that. The problem is, however, that the appointment process is engineered towards professional people who share very little with the people that they judge.

Assessing Guilt in a Magistrate Court

As stated above, magistrates will decide on the guilt of a defendant. There will be no trial by jury, therefore, it is essential that the people who sit in judgment are the defendant's peers. If one looks at the application process as provided on the department for constitutional affairs, the qualities needed are good character, ability for understanding and communication, social awareness, maturity and a sound temperament, sound judgment and a commitment to the job. These are all admiral qualities, yet these are not imposed upon any jury that sits in judgment of more serious cases. Why is this so? There are numerous possible explanations for this polarized approach, and often depends upon a person's particular ideological persuasion. Nevertheless, the statistics speak for themselves. Most magistrates are white, middle class males. If one considers that defendants should be judged by their peers, it would be interesting to see how white, middle class males go out stealing cars, or indeed committing other petty criminal offences. What are the possible solutions for this problem?

A Call for a More Diverse Magistrate Pool

Magistrates work on a voluntary basis and need time off work to honor their commitments. There have been Proposals to make it easier for magistrates who are in employment to take time off from work to sit in court (Monday 7 November 2005 10:37 Department for Constitutional Affairs). This, for me, does not solve the problem of having a primarily middle classed system acting as judge, jury and executioner. What is needed is a more diverse magistrate pool. This will provide for a more understanding magistrate. If one has lived in a cozy, secure, insulated world, how are you going to have any affinity with an individual who has had a disrupted childhood? The answer is that you are not. The arguments in favour regarding a more diverse pool of magistrates is deafening, however, it remains to be seen as to whether they will be heard.


This paper has assessed the role of a magistrate within the judicial process by tracing the origins of the magistrate and looking at the way in which a magistrate is appointed. The role of the magistrate is one that should never be undervalued. They give up their time on a voluntary basis and provide a vital service in filtering the more serious crimes to be tried in front of a jury. There exists a fundamental problem, however, in that a magistrate often shares no life experiences with the people that they sit in judgment over. The sociological implications for a system, such as the one in place cannot be underestimated. The time has now come for a more diverse magistrate pool that draws from all members of society, regardless of their previous background.

The Role of a Criminal Defense Lawyer in Today's Time

Criminal defense lawyers sometime get a not-so-flattering portrayal because people assume that they defend guilty people. However, if you are a defendant in a criminal proceeding, you need the assistance of a qualified criminal defense lawyer, regardless of your guilt or innocence. As the protectors and advocates of the accused, defense lawyers play a pivotal role in the United States justice system to see that everyone charged with a criminal act has an opportunity to defend themselves.

Defense Lawyers Protect the Rights of the Accused

First and foremost, a criminal defense lawyer's role is to protect the rights of the accused. Upholding your rights under the Bill of Rights as set forth in the United States Constitution, criminal defense lawyers are bound by law to assist their clients by making sure you are treated fairly by the United States criminal justice system. Specifically, your criminal defense lawyer's job is to see that you are allowed:

·The right to a trial by a jury of your peers;

·The right to be presumed innocent until proven guilty "beyond a reasonable doubt";

· The right to a speedy and public trial;

· The right to remain silent;

·The right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures; and

·The right to legal counsel.

All these rights are guaranteed by the United States Constitution and are applicable to all states through the Fourteenth Amendment as well as United States Supreme Court case opinions. As such, a criminal defense lawyer is obligated to provide clients with protection against the overreach of the government in meting out punishment to any individual accused of a criminal offense. An experienced, qualified lawyer accomplishes this by challenging any government or law enforcement conduct that violates the rights of any United States citizen accused of a crime. Should a criminal defense lawyer fail to make reasonable efforts to protect your rights or provide effective assistance, he/she risks losing his/her license to practice law or other penalties (some of which could include jail time).

Criminal Lawyers Defend the Innocent

The second most important role of a criminal defense attorney is to defend the innocent. We see daily about overturned criminal cases where new evidence verifies the incarceration of an innocent person who has served time as a result of an incorrect guilty verdict. And, while for the most part, most clients of criminal defense attorneys are somewhat criminally culpable in the crime they have been charged with, on rare occasions, some of a lawyer's clients are truly innocent. Though a rare occurrence, innocent people are accused and convicted of criminal offenses.

To combat the prosecution of the wrongly accused, criminal defense lawyers must be diligent in holding prosecutors and police accountable for every stage of their investigation in every case they handle. Thus, defense lawyers must take seriously their role as advocates for the innocent and the not-so-innocent to assure that the guilty don't escape while the innocent are punished.

Therefore, to accomplish the task of upholding a client's constitution rights and acting as a watchdog to oversee the conduct of police and prosecutors, a criminal defense lawyer must zealously pursue independent investigations into the crime for which a client has been accused to assure that at trial, that client is either completely exonerated or that there is enough evidence to prove that reasonable doubt exists to warrant his/her client's release from custody.

And, while for the majority of instances, a person who has reached the point of a jury trial is guilty, defense attorneys are mandated to provide every client an opportunity to a fair trial. Guilty or not, everyone has the constitutional right to have a fair trial. With a strong belief in the adversarial nature of the criminal justice system, reputable criminal defense attorneys recognize the right of every citizen to have representation and sometimes must put aside their emotions to represent those who have committed very serious crimes.

Criminal Defense Lawyers Defend the Guilty

In general guilty clients that criminal defense attorney' represent fall into two categories:

·Those who deny criminal culpability; and

·Those who take responsibility for their criminal behavior

Most lawyers agree that the most difficult criminal client to represent is one that takes some responsibility for the crime as it is much easier to establish innocence or reasonable doubt when you don't think your client is guilty. Facing ethical and moral dilemmas daily, a criminal defense lawyer must deal with situations where they have knowingly facilitated the release of a guilty person, risking their reputation and a clear conscience. On the other hand, defense lawyers get a great deal of satisfaction when their representation of an accused individual has a positive impact on society. For instance, when a criminal defense lawyer helps a client avoid more serious legal consequences by intervening in lives to affect positive change (i.e., plea bargains of rehabilitation instead of jail time, community service and probation instead of jail time etc.). As a trusted advocate, criminal defense lawyers have a great deal of influence on their clients' lives as opposed to a judge, prosecutor or probation officer.

Lawyers are a Necessary Part of the United States Judicial System

Sometimes portrayed as villains who help criminals run free, criminal defense lawyers are necessary for the United States legal system to run smoothly. Without the availability of qualified legal representation for those accused of crimes, the potential for overreach by government would be great. A balanced system where all parties are represented and where one side isn't given free rein to rule over the other is what our judicial system is all about. And, while every system has its flaws, the United States judicial system is still the best available in the world.

How COMPSTAT Helped Enforce Criminal Laws in Los Angeles

The LAPD credits some of the decrease in violent crime trends to the institution and tailoring of the COMPSTAT crime control model. COMPSTAT, short for computer statistics, hopes to implement proactive methods of fighting crime.

Part of the reason it is so effective is that it holds police managers accountable for their assigned area and gives them the authority to use their resources effectively. The core elements of COMSTAT are:

  • Accurate and timely intelligence. The police need to create and utilize an effective method of sharing information between the levels of the organization. This includes details about recent crime patterns and trends. Implementation of accurate intelligence exchange allows the police force to use limited resources more effectively.
  • Effective tactics. The police must treat every case as a big case and apply thorough, rapid investigation systematically. COMPSTAT also encourages officers to handle social and environmental influences that may create or add to a problem.
  • Rapid deployment. The police can monitor criminal trends and patterns as they emerge using regularly updated COMPSTAT data. Officers can use this information to act proactively with decoys, plainclothes, and uniformed police activity. Without COMPSTAT, the LAPD would usually only deploy officers when they received reports of criminal activity.
  • Relentless follow-up and assessment. Possibly taking a tip from successful business practices, COMPSTAT focuses everything on getting results. The COMPSTAT Unit scrutinizes administrative, operational, and investigative police activity to find what is producing positive results and what is not. The Unit also reviews past tactics to prevent the LAPD from using those that have not been successful.

Sentencing Guidelines in Los Angeles
Judges pass sentences on defendants in almost every state and federal criminal case. They base the sentences on the laws and constitution of their state and the Eighth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution that prohibits excessive punishments.

The laws and constitution in California outline what activities are criminal offenses and acceptable penalties for such actions. In most cases, the statute provides a range of possible punishments. If the judge believes the actions of the defendant deserve it, he or she can pass a more serious sentence.

The following parties can request the judge apply the minimum or maximum sentence available:

  • State attorneys
  • Family of the victim
  • Defendants

However, some states and all federal criminal laws include mandatory sentences for criminal convictions. This requires the judge sentence every person convicted of that crime the same. Most crimes in California do not carry mandatory penalties, and the defendant's Los Angeles criminal defense lawyer can speak on behalf of his or her client before the judge passes sentence to try to reduce the penalties they face.

Hiring a Criminal Defense Lawyer

Those that have been charged with a crime will need an effective criminal defense lawyer. While there are qualified public defenders capable of decent representation, you do not want merely decent representation. The outcome of a judgment can have life altering consequences for the person who is charged. This is why it is of paramount important to select the appropriate criminal defense lawyer.

An appropriate selection, however, does not mean you merely open up the local phone directory or perform a cursory search online and base a selection on the advertisement you come across. To reiterate, there will be life altering consequences which can occur when a negative judgment is issued. The way to avoid this would be to hire an attorney that is intimately capable of providing you with the best available representation. In order to acquire such representation, you will need to follow a few established steps for making sure you are working with a criminal defense lawyer that will be effective.

The most obvious - yet often overlooked - attribute you will need to seek out is a criminal defense lawyer that is a specialist in the area of criminal defense you require representation. Not all crimes are the same and this means different approaches are required to effectively perform the proper representation. Matching your unique situation with an attorney that has specific experience and expertise in the crime you are charged with is a must.

You also need to work with a criminal defense lawyer that has your needs in mind. You definitely do not want to work with a lawyer that is not representing you in the appropriate manner. For example, you do not want to plea bargain, you do not want to work with a lawyer that is seemingly trying to force you into such a direction. This would not be to the benefit of anyone involved.

That said you do have to understand that the attorney has more expertise than you in such matters. In some instances, it would be best to follow along with the suggestion of your attorney provided the attorney has explained why his approach is the most advisable.

On the other hand, you do not want to work with an attorney that will only "yes" you on all your requests because this could lead to a disastrous legal outcome. Such representation really is not representation and attorneys with this attitude are best avoided.

Obviously, an attorney must be compensated for his time and duty. Criminal defense representation can potentially be very costly. However, there is no reason to assume you will be limited to inflexible and expensive payment options. There are highly talented criminal defense attorneys who can offer representation with an affordable payment structure. Seeking out such attorneys is highly advised if costs are a concern of yours.

Ultimately, you will want to work with the best criminal defense lawyer you can hire. The situation is just too serious and dire to work with a lawyer that cannot provide you with the absolute best help for your case.

Criminal Law - An Overview

If you have been charged with a criminal offense in US the first thing you need to do is to contact a criminal defense attorney. The criminal law in US is quite complicated and it requires professional expertise to deal with a legal battle. Chicago is no different in this respect. Getting arrested can be a stressful and traumatic experience. It can affect your life in many ways. So you need some one who has both experience and expertise to ensure minimizing the harsh consequences following your arrest.

While going through such a disturbed mental state an accused person can not handle the intricate legal issues. Naturally he or she needs a lawyer who can aggressively fight on behalf of that person. From drug charges to DUI offenses, an experienced lawyer can handle all types if cases.

Criminal Charges

Chicago criminal law emphasizes on both federal laws and state laws. If someone violates any of the following laws criminal charges can be brought against that person.

  • Robbery and burglary
  • Crimes of violence
  • Property crimes
  • Drug-related crimes
  • Domestic crimes
  • Motor vehicle offenses
  • White collar crimes
  • Sex crimes

Criminal Defense

Criminal law process in Chicago has a set format. Since the Chicago criminal defense lawyers are well aware of the process it is easier for them to take every step cautiously so that the negative consequences can be minimized. Therefore you should not do a single thing without consulting your lawyer.


Whenever you suspect that you may get involved in any kind of investigation related to some crime the immediate step to be taken is to hire a criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. If you have been accused or arrested and further investigation is going to take place a criminal defense can help you to gather information that can be of much significance in your case.

Charges & Bail

As soon as a person is arrested the prosecutor decides what to charge the accused person. In such a situation a Chicago Criminal Defense Attorney can protect your rights. The constitutional rights include:

  • right to remain silent
  • right to have a lawyer
  • right to have a trial
  • right to be presumed innocent

While the trial goes on your attorney can apply for your bail. Your lawyer will post money or bond as bail which will ensure your further appearance in the court. Before posting bail money or bond it is crucial to consult an attorney to see what the legal options for the accused person are.

Hearing, Trial & Sentencing

An accused person initially faces hearings. During the hearings the criminal defense attorney can try to reduce the charges brought against the accused. If the case proceeds to trial it is crucial to have an attorney on your side to ensure that the charges are being reduced. If you are convicted of a crime the attorney can at least go for a plea bargain and get the most favorable sentence for you.

Accused of Bank Fraud? Hire a Criminal Attorney to Help You Develop an Effective Defense Strategy

If you're being investigated for or have already been charged with bank fraud, you should speak with an experienced criminal attorney right away. Bank fraud is a serious crime punishable by prison and/or possibly a huge sum of money for restitution. What is bank fraud? It is a violation of the law by falsifying information at a financial institution or using a bank account to embezzle or steal monies from a bank. It is also considered bank fraud if you over-evaluate property or securities for the purpose of obtaining more monies than normally allowed. Bank fraud may also include false loan applications, the use of non-existent collateral to obtain a loan, or the misuse of borrowed funds.

Bank fraud is considered a white collar crime in most instances because it is often committed by those inside the bank, such as loan officers, tellers, currency traders, etc. It can also be committed by those outside the banking industry in the form of stolen checks, forgery, credit card fraud, identity theft, Internet fraud, etc.

In bank fraud cases, the United States Attorney's Office will indict the accused, and this federal crime may be tried in certain state districts. Whether you are guilty or innocent of the bank fraud crime you're being accused of, a criminal lawyer in your area that specializes in bank fraud can help you determine the best way to move forward in your case. Don't walk this road alone; it's too serious not to speak with an attorney. Here are some tips to help you find a dependable criminal defense lawyer.

Look for a Local Attorney

It's important to be able to work with a local criminal defense attorney. You will likely have multiple meetings and will need to be able to visit your attorney whenever necessary to review new findings in your case. A local attorney knows about the local or district court systems, and can focus on your case - not on learning about local aspects of the courts. To find dependable local representation, search online using keywords specific to your area. Here are some key phrase examples: "Miami criminal lawyer," "Fort Lauderdale criminal attorney," "West Palm Beach criminal lawyer," or "Miami criminal attorney."

Interview Several Attorneys

It's difficult to know which criminal attorney is right for you without interviewing several. Most lawyers offer a free consultation. This gives you an opportunity to get to know the lawyer, his style, his views on your case, and his experience with bank fraud. Lawyers tend to specialize in one or two areas of criminal law. You should also make sure there are no personality conflicts. You should be able to speak openly with your attorney without arguments or negative feelings.

Ask about past experiences with similar cases of bank fraud. Consider a criminal lawyer that has defended others in similar cases successfully. This is a big plus because he's already experienced in this area and will be able to bring his past knowledge to the drawing table for your defense.

Credibility can be verified through referrals, an AV ranking (achieved only by a lawyer that's been admitted to the bar for at least 10 years), and the Better Business Bureau. It's important that you choose a criminal lawyer that's absolutely trustworthy with credentials to back up his integrity.

Build Trust

Never lie to your criminal attorney. This will only negate your defense. If your lawyer can't trust you, then certainly the judge will not trust you. It's important to divulge all information to your attorney up front to avoid nasty surprises on your court day. If there's information that could help you win the case that you need to verify, then by all means let your attorney know about it so he can help you obtain proper documentation to establish evidence in your defense. It's important that the line of communication remain open at all times so your criminal attorney can give you the best defense possible.

Whatever crime you've been accused of, the right criminal attorney can help you find an appropriate direction to take. You need guidance in a time like this...allow your legal right to representation work for you and not against you. Whether you live in West Palm Beach or Fort Lauderdale, lawyers who are experienced in bank fraud cases are readily available to help you build a solid defense.

The Criminal Law Handbook - Know Your Rights, Survive the System

"The Criminal Law Handbook: Know Your Rights, Survive the System" by Attorneys Paul Bergman & Sara J. Berman is an impressive 678 page tome of information all about criminal law. The book sets out to assist you with understanding the confusing rules and procedures involved with criminal offences and to teach you how the system works, why police, lawyers, and judges do what they do, and most importantly, what you can do to limit the harm. I feel it accomplishes that goal very well. Most of the book is written in an understandable question-and-answer format to explain the criminal justice system, both inside and outside the courtroom. It goes from initial police questioning through trials to prison and parole.

One must remember that Nolo focuses on making the law accessible to everyone, and the books published by Nolo do an outstanding job of doing just that. Therefore, this book isn't a criminal law text book as you would find in law school, but a comprehensive guide for the non-lawyer or layperson. For such a guide, it is very good and includes a lot of information.

The twenty-seven chapters are broken down like this:

Chapter One: Talking to the Police. Chapter provides information on police questioning of people who haven't been taken into custody and questioning of arrestees.

Chapter Two: Search and Seizure. Some of the topics covered here include: search warrants, plain view doctrine, stop and frisk, searches of cars, and warrantless searches.

Chapter Three: Arrest: When It Happens, What It Means. This chapter covers general arrest principles, arrest warrants, warrantless arrests, use of force when making arrests, and citizens' arrests.

Chapter Four: Eyewitness Identification: Psychology and Procedures. Topics include eyewitness identification procedures, psychology of eyewitness identification, lineups, showups, photo identification, and motions to suppress identification.

Chapter Five: Booking and Bail: Checking In and Out of Jail. The booking process, arranging for bail, and being released on your own recognizance are covered here.

Chapter Six: From Suspect to Defendant. This chapter focuses on crime and criminal cases and charging, grand juries, and diversion.

Chapter Seven: Criminal Defense Lawyers. Do you need a lawyer, court-appointed attorneys, private defense attorneys, and self-representation are covered in this chapter.

Chapter Eight: Understanding the Attorney-Client Relationship in a Criminal Case. Topics include confidentiality, client-centered decision making, lawyer-client communication, among others.

Chapter Nine: A Walk Through Criminal Court. The courthouse, courtroom, courtroom players, and courtroom behavior are explained.

Chapter Ten: Arraignments. Timing and self-representation at arraignments are looked at here.

Chapter Eleven: Developing the Defense Strategy. Just what the chapter title says, the basics of defense strategy.

Chapter Twelve: Crimespeak: Understanding the Language of Criminal Laws. Basics about things such as murder and manslaughter, sexual violence, burglary, robbery, hate crimes, Patriot Act and more.

Chapter Thirteen: Defensespeak: Common Defenses to Criminal Charges. Topics such as partial defenses, self-defense, alibi, and insanity are covered here among others.

Chapter Fourteen: Discovery: Exchanging Information With the Prosecution. Discovery is an important part of any legal or civil case and this chapter provides the basics for the criminal arena.

Chapter Fifteen: Investigating the Facts. Interviews and witnesses are a couple of the things covered here.

Chapter Sixteen: Preliminary Hearings. What they are, what your rights are, and common strategies of both sides are presented here.

Chapter Seventeen: Fundamental Trial Rights of the Defense. Topics covered include: Due Process, Burden of Proof, Right to Remain Silent, Right to Confront Witnesses, Right to Jury Trial, Right to Counsel, and others.

Chapter Eighteen: Basic Evidence Rules in Criminal Trials. There are procedures that must be followed when presenting evidence and this chapter provides guidelines for doing it right.

Chapter Nineteen: Motions and Their Role in Criminal Cases. Learn what they are and what they are for in this chapter.

Chapter Twenty: Plea Bargains: How Most Criminal Cases End. Basics on plea bargains, the pros and cons, the process, and the strategy of negotiating plea bargains are covered in this chapter.

Chapter Twenty-one: The Trial Process. Good chapter on the various aspects of a trial from choosing a judge or jury to deliberations and verdict.

Chapter Twenty-two: Sentencing: How the Court Punishes Convicted Defendants. The basics of sentencing procedures and options and a bit about the death penalty.

Chapter Twenty-three. Appeals: Seeking Review by a Higher Court. Losing at trial does not necessarily mean it is over. This chapter covers appeals and writs.

Chapter Twenty-four: How the Criminal Justice System Works: A Walk Through Two Drunk Driving Cases. Examples using drunk driving.

Chapter Twenty-five: Juvenile Courts and Procedures. Special chapter explaining the how things work in Juvenile Courts.

Chapter Twenty-six: Prisoners' Rules. Information covering prisons and prisoners' rights, legal resources, parole and pardons.

Chapter Twenty-seven. Looking Up the Law. What and where to research, including a glossary.

Again, this book is a large tome of information. It is organized well and has many side-bars and examples. If you have a question regarding criminal law, more than likely this book will have an answer. The authors do point out that the law varies from state to state, and I'd recommend that besides this book, anyone dealing with the criminal system on their own look to the statutes in the jurisdiction they are in to ensure they have the law that is applicable to their case. That's why I really like that the final chapter provides guidance in this area. The authors also note that the book is not intended as a detailed guide to self-representation. It is a thorough overview of the entire system, but it's not everything, and that's because you can't put everything regarding our complex system in one book.

This is an excellent tour of the criminal justice system and one of the best resources around for the layperson who wants or needs to navigate the complex maze of rules and laws that make up our system. I recommend it highly for anyone who wants to know all about criminal law.

Phoenix Criminal Attorneys - Important Details On Finding The Right Criminal Attorney For You

What we today call the criminal justice system has long evolved from since ancient times, with new forms of punishment, added and different rights to offenders and victims. As the system advanced so did the lawyers who are embedded in it as well.

Phoenix criminal attorneys are the backbone of the criminal justice system. In that criminal attorneys are directly involved the actual events that occur in the system. This article will explore how Phoenix criminal attorneys influence the criminal justice system and what is the best way to find Phoenix criminal attorneys.

Phoenix criminal attorneys start working way before you are in a court room. The process starts from being arrested, charged, initial appeal, preliminary hearings, and bail detention hearing all the way to trail.

This is why sometimes having Phoenix criminal attorneys just in case to represent you is a sure way to protect your interests and your family's interest as well. One may never know if you are standing at the wrong place at the wrong time, at a scene of a crime and is in need of immediate legal council from Phoenix criminal attorneys.

Nevertheless, as there may be miss charges when a person does commit a felony, Phoenix criminal attorneys need to prove to the system that this person committed a felony. Because you are innocent until proven guilty it is the Phoenix criminal attorney's job to fight for the safety of people in Phoenix, Arizona and around the nation. This point of view many times is not taken into consideration because of the bad rep lawyers have for being liars. However, without them there would be no way of putting together the evidence and presenting it to the system.

Finding the right Phoenix criminal attorneys to protect you or represent is easier than many believe if you follow three important guidelines.

ONE- Experience, experience, experience. Many people may put this to a side and not see it as important as cost, however when it comes to your life money is not a factor. Phoenix criminal attorneys who have been serving the public for over 10 years have and have an impeccable track service are an easy pick.

TWO- Talking about an impeccable track record, experience is important however talking in consideration how many cases the criminal attorney has won is as important.

THREE- Attorneys who provide and aggressive representation is central when having to face a trail. Defensive passive attorneys will not get the work done and will not provide adequate representation.

As you may have noticed these are a few reasons why Phoenix criminal attorneys are so important to our criminal justice system as well as to our society. By following the three simple guidelines you may find attorneys of law with a lot more ease. Finally when choosing Phoenix criminal attorneys do not forget to choose a lawyer who you believe is representing you just like he would like to be represented.

Criminal Law Information: Fraud, Hate Crimes & Child Abuse

Criminal law is one of the most common types of law practiced in the United States. People make mistakes, and when these mistakes involve the law, it is absolutely critical that if you find yourself on the wrong side of the law that you have the best lawyer at your side to help you protect your rights and freedom. Some of the most common infractions that people find themselves involved with are child abuse laws, fraud, and hate crimes.

Child abuse laws are in place to help protect innocent people, but more and more often these days these laws are used to take advantage of innocent people. Unscrupulous people use the stigma attached with child abuse accusations to force innocent people into situations that they never wanted to be in the first place. Unfortunately, because people often instantly judge people those accused of child abuse crimes to be guilty, it takes the best lawyers to help those wrongfully accused of these reprehensible crimes to see the light of justice again.

Fraud is also one of the most common crimes that people have to deal with in the 21st century. These business crimes include insurance fraud, government fraud, tax fraud, stock fraud, financial fraud, healthcare fraud, and telemarketing fraud, and the technologies available in the computer age can turn simple and innocent mistakes into devastating and life-altering consequences. Without the expert counsel of the dedicated and experienced fraud lawyers at resource4criminallaw.com, you or someone you love could end up in jail without hope of getting the justice they deserve.

Hate crimes are another type of special crime that few people understand unless they are facing charges. What few people understand is that hate crime laws are so hazy and nebulous that virtually any act can be construed as a "hate crime" if the "victims" and lawyer have an agenda to prove or an axed to grind. People accused off these crimes need to be represernted by the best legal minds possible, and the attorneys at resource4criminallaw.com have decades of combined experience in helping people on the wrong side of hate crimes get the justice they deserve.

Resource4criminallaw.com is your one stop shop for all your criminal defense needs. Why should you trust your freedom, your fortune or even your life to secondrate public defenders? Explore Resource4thepeople.com today and see what we can do for you.

Mortgage Fraud Schemes in South Carolina - A Review For SC Criminal Attorneys, Lawyers & Law Firms

Mortgage fraud is problem that has reached epidemic proportions in the United States (US) in general and in South Carolina (SC) in particular. The white collar practitioner should be aware that mortgage fraud is generally investigated by the United States Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), although other agencies routinely assist the FBI and/or take the lead in investigating a case. Some of the other federal agencies which investigate mortgage fraud crimes for criminal prosecution include, but are not limited to, the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigative Division (IRS-CID), United States Postal Inspection Service (USPIS), U.S. Secret Service (USSS), U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development-Office of the Inspector General (HUD-OIG), Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation-Office of the Inspector General (FDIC-OIG), the Department of Veterans Affairs-Office of the Inspector General (DVA-OIG) and U.S. Bankruptcy Trustees.

The FBI works extensively with the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN). FinCEN is a bureau of the United States Department of the Treasury, created in 1990, that collects and analyzes information about financial transactions in order to fight financial crimes, including mortgage fraud, money laundering and terrorist financing. The FinCEN network is a means of bringing people and information together to combat complex criminal financial transactions such as mortgage fraud and money laundering by implementing information sharing among law enforcement agencies and its other partners in the regulatory and financial communities. South Carolina lawyers can keep abreast of mortgage fraud developments by visiting the respective websites of the FBI and FinCEN.

In South Carolina, mortgage fraud is generally prosecuted by federal prosecutors. The United States Attorney's Office (USAO) and the U.S. Department of Justice's (DOJ) Criminal Fraud Section handle the criminal prosecutions of mortgage fraud cases. The USAO in South Carolina has about 50 prosecutors in the state, and has offices in Charleston, Columbia, Florence, and Greenville. In the investigation stage, a person with possible knowledge or involvement in a mortgage fraud may be considered a witness, subject or target of the investigation. A subject is generally a person the prosecutor believes may have committed a mortgage fraud crime, whereas a target is a person the prosecutor believes has committed a crime such as mortgage fraud and the prosecutor has substantial evidence to support a criminal prosecution. Criminal prosecutions of mortgage fraud felony cases are usually initiated through the federal grand jury process. A federal grand jury consists of between 16 and 23 grand jurors who are presented evidence of alleged criminal activity by the federal prosecutors with the aid of law enforcement agents, usually FBI special agents. At least 12 members of the grand jury must vote in favor of an indictment charging mortgage fraud. South Carolina criminal defense lawyers are not allowed entry into the grand jury at any time, and prosecutors rarely fail to obtain an indictment after presentment of their case to the grand jury.

Often targets of a mortgage fraud prosecution are invited by the prosecution to avail themselves of the grand jury process and to testify in front of the grand jury. Generally, a South Carolina criminal defense attorney should not allow a named target of a federal criminal mortgage fraud investigation to testify before the grand jury. Subjects and witnesses in a mortgage fraud prosecution are often subpoenaed by the prosecutors to testify before the grand jury. A criminal defense attorney should likewise generally advise a witness or subject to not testify if any part of the testimony would possibly incriminate the client. With respect to a federal mortgage fraud investigation, when a citizen receives a target letter, subject letter, or a subpoena to testify before the grand jury, or is contacted in person by a law enforcement officer such as an FBI special agent, a South Carolina criminal lawyer who is experienced in federal prosecutions should be consulted immediately. One of the biggest mistakes a mortgage fraud target, subject or witness can make is to testify before the grand jury or speak to criminal investigators prior to consulting with a criminal defense attorney. The 5th Amendment to the Constitution allows any person, including a target, subject or witness in a mortgage fraud prosecution, to not incriminate himself or herself. Interestingly, there is no 5th Amendment protection for a corporation. Obviously, if a defendant has been indicted or arrested for a federal mortgage fraud crime in South Carolina, an experienced SC mortgage fraud lawyer should be consulted immediately.

An important practice tip for South Carolina attorneys representing clients who have decided to testify before the grand jury is to accompany the client to the grand jury court room. While not allowed in the grand jury proceeding itself, the attorney can wait just outside of the court room and the client is allowed to consult with the attorney for any question which is posed to the client by prosecutors or grand jurors. This is an effective way to help minimize any potential damaging statements by the client, and a great way to learn the focus of the prosecutor's case. This approach makes it much easier to gain insights from the client as to the questions asked during the grand jury proceeding as opposed to debriefing the client after a sometimes long and grueling question and answer session which can last for hours.

South Carolina white collar criminal attorneys need to be aware of the types of mortgage fraud that are prevalent in the state in order to effectively identify and represent clients who are involved in mortgage fraud activities. Consumers need to be aware of the variations of mortgage fraud so that they do not unwittingly become a part of a scheme to defraud a bank or federally backed lending institution. Federal mortgage fraud crimes in South Carolina are punishable by up to 30 years imprisonment in federal prison or $1,000,000 fine, or both. It is unlawful and fraudulent for a person to make a false statement regarding his or her income, assets, debt, or matters of identification, or to willfully overvalue any land or property, in a loan or credit application for the purpose of influencing in any way the action of a federally backed financial institution.

Some of the applicable federal criminal statutes which may be charged in mortgage fraud indictments include, but are not limited to, the following:

• 18 U.S.C. § 1001 - Statements or entries generally
• 18 U.S.C. § 1010 - HUD and Federal Housing Administration Transactions
• 18 U.S.C. § 1014 - Loan and credit applications generally
• 18 U.S.C. § 1028 - Fraud and related activity in connection with identification documents
• 18 U.S.C. § 1341 - Frauds and swindles by Mail
• 18 U.S.C. § 1342 - Fictitious name or address
• 18 U.S.C. § 1343 - Fraud by wire
• 18 U.S.C. § 1344 - Bank Fraud
• 18 U.S.C. § 2 - Aiding and Abetting
• 18 U.S.C. § 371 - Conspiracy
• 42 U.S.C. § 408(a) - False Social Security Number

While states experiencing the highest number of mortgage fraud cases are California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, New York, Ohio, Texas, Utah, Arizona, Colorado, Maryland, Minnesota, Missouri, Nevada, North Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia, the state of South Carolina has seen a huge rise in the number of mortgage fraud cases being prosecuted by the USAO, DOJ and FBI.

In South Carolina, a disproportionate number of mortgage fraud cases have occurred in the coastal region. Some of the South Carolina counties with high concentrations of mortgage fraud or bank fraud cases include Horry County, Florence County, Georgetown County, Charleston County, Berkeley County, Dorchester County, Beaufort County, Colleton County and Jasper County. Some of the South Carolina cities with high concentrations of mortgage fraud or bank fraud cases include Little River, North Myrtle Beach, Myrtle Beach, Murrells Inlet, Georgetown, Awendaw, Mt. Pleasant, Charleston, North Charleston, James Island, Isle of Palms, Sullivan's Island, Folly Beach, Kiawah Island, Hollywood, Ravenel, Beaufort, Bluffton and Hilton Head Island. The reason for the increased number of mortgage fraud and bank fraud criminal prosecutions in these areas is because large number of condominium, condotels, townhouse and similar real estate projects which proliferated in these areas. These real estate developments were popular in areas close to the waterfront and bank lenders were willing to loan money at a furious pace due to a perceived enormous demand.

There are a wide variety of schemes, artifices and conspiracies to perpetrate mortgage frauds and band frauds with which the South Carolina white collar criminal defense lawyer and consumers must be familiar. Typical mortgage fraud schemes or conspiracies that have occurred in South Carolina and elsewhere throughout the United States include the following:

Air Loans. The air loan mortgage fraud scheme is a loan obtained on a nonexistent property or for a nonexistent borrower. Professional scam artists often work together to create a fake borrower and a fake chain of title on a nonexistent property. They then obtain a title and property insurance binder to present to the bank. The scam artists often set up fake phone banks and mailboxes in order to create fake employment verifications and W-2s, home addresses and borrower telephone numbers. They may establish accounts for payments, and maintain custodial accounts for escrows. Phone banks are used to impersonate an employer, an appraiser, a credit agency, a law firm, an accountant, etc..., for bank verification purposes. The air loan scam artists obtain the loan proceeds and no property is ever bought or sold, and the bank is left with an unpaid loan that never had any collateral.

Appraisal fraud. Appraisal fraud is often an integral part of most mortgage fraud scams and occurs when a dishonest appraiser fraudulently appraises a property by inflating its value. In most cases, after the seller receives the closing proceeds, he will pay a kickback to the appraiser as a quid pro quo for the fake appraisal. In most cases, the borrower doesn't make any loan payments and the house or property goes into foreclosure.

Equity Skimming. In an equity skimming mortgage fraud scheme, an investor often uses a straw buyer, false income documents, and false credit reports to obtain a mortgage loan in the straw buyer's name. After the closing, the straw buyer signs the property over to the investor in a quit claim deed which relinquishes all rights to the property and provides no guaranty to title. The investor does not make any mortgage payments, and rents the property until foreclosure takes place several months later. Equity skimming also occurs when a scam artist purchases a residential property whose owner is in default on his mortgage and/or his real estate taxes, and then diverts rental income from the property for personal gain and does not apply this rental income toward mortgage payments, the payment of taxes and other property-related expenses.

Flipping. A flipping scheme occurs when the seller intentionally misrepresents the value of a property in order to induce a buyer's purchase. Flipping mortgage fraud schemes usually involve a fraudulent appraisal and a grossly inflated sales price.

Foreclosure schemes. Foreclosure scheme scam artists prey on people with mounting financial problems that that place them in danger of losing their home. Homeowners in the early stages of foreclosure may be contacted by a fraudster who represents to the homeowner that he can get rid of his debt and save his house for an upfront fee, which the scam artist takes and then disappears. In a similar foreclosure scheme, Homeowners are approached by a scam artist who offers to help them refinance the loan. The homeowners are fraudulently induced to sign so-called "refinance" documents only to later find out that they actually transferred title to the house to the fraudster and then face eviction.

Nominee Loans/Straw buyers. One of the most frequent types of mortgage fraud occurs when a "straw buyer" is used to hide the identity of the true borrower who would not qualify for the mortgage. The straw buyer or nominee buyer generally has good credit. The scam artist usually fills out the loan application for the straw buyer, and falsifies the income and net worth of the straw buyer in order to qualify for the loan. These fraud scams were popularized with the advent of the "stated income" loans which did not require a borrower to prove his true income and net worth - the bank just believed the income and net worth that was "stated" on the loan application. Straw buyers are often duped into thinking that they're investing in real estate that will be rented out, with the rental payments paying the mortgage, and are sometime paid a nominal fee outside of closing. In most case, no payments are made and the lender forecloses on the loan. Sometimes straw buyers are actually in on the scam and are getting a cut of the proceeds.

Silent Second. In the silent second mortgage fraud scheme, the buyer borrows the down payment for the purchase of the property from the seller through the execution of a second mortgage which is not disclosed to the lending bank. The lending bank is fraudulently led to believe that the borrower has invested his own money for the down payment, when in fact, it is borrowed. The second mortgage is generally not recorded to further conceal its status from the primary lending bank.

A mortgage fraud is usually reported to the FBI by the financial institution upon which the fraud has been committed. Pursuant to the Bank Secrecy Act of 1970 (BSA), a bank must file a Suspicious Activity Report (SAR) with FinCEN if a customer's actions indicate that the customer is laundering money or otherwise violating a federal criminal law such as committing mortgage fraud. See 31 C.F.R. § 103.18(a). A bank is required to file a SAR no later than 30 calendar days after the date of initial detection by the bank of facts that may constitute a basis for filing a SAR, unless no suspect was initially identified on the date of the detection, in which case the bank has up to 60 days to file the SAR. See 31 C.F.R. § 103.18(b). Once FinCEN has analyzed the information contained in the SAR, if a criminal activity is found to have occurred, then the case is turned over to the FBI and the DOJ or AUSO for investigation and prosecution. The rise in FBI SARs reports involving mortgage fraud went from approximately 2,000 in 1996 to over 25,000 in 2005. Of those 2005 SARs reports, 20,000 of involved borrower fraud, approximately 7,000 involved broker fraud, and approximately 2,000 involved appraiser fraud.

The FBI has identified a number of indicators of mortgage fraud of which the South Carolina criminal white collar lawyer needs to be aware. These include inflated appraisals or the exclusive use of one appraiser, increased commissions or bonuses for brokers and appraisers, bonuses paid (outside or at settlement) for fee-based services, higher than customary fees, falsifications on loan applications, explanations to buyers on how to falsify the mortgage application, requests for borrowers to sign a blank loan application, fake supporting loan documentation, requests to sign blank employee forms, bank forms or other forms, purchase loans which are disguised as refinance loans, investors who are guaranteed a re-purchase of the property, investors who are paid a fixed percentage to sell or flip a property, and when multiple "Holding Companies" are used to increase property values.

One of the first and biggest South Carolina mortgage fraud prosecutions occurred in the Charleston Division in the 1990's. It involved nominee borrowers and straw loans made by Citadel Federal Saving and Loan. Over 10 straw purchasers were enticed into the real estate loans by getting paid fees for signing up for the loans. They did not put up any of their own money as part of the deal and when the loans went sour the bank was left with properties that were upside down, that is, the real estate was worth less the the amount of the loan. Some bank insiders were part of the scheme and got convicted for their respective roles.

The range of defendants that a SC criminal lawyer will represent in a typical mortgage fraud case may include straw borrowers or nominee borrowers, real estate agents, developers, appraisers, mortgage brokers, and sometimes even closing attorneys and bankers. Bankers often get involved in mortgage fraud scams because they are receiving kickbacks from the borrowers or are paid bonuses for the volume of loans made and thus ignore proper banking loan requirements and protocols in order to make more money. Close scrutiny should be given to bank loan applications, appraisals, HUD-1 closing statements, borrower's W-2 and tax returns when analyzing a potential mortgage fraud case for a potential client.

Federal judges who impose sentences for mortgage fraud normally rely upon the United States Sentencing Guidelines, which are now advisory as a result of the U.S. v. Booker case, when determining a sentence. A federal court calculates a particular guideline range by assessing a defendant's criminal history, the applicable base offense level, and the amount of the actual or intended loss. Section 2B1.1 of the USSG sets forth a loss table which increases the base offense level according to the amount of money involved in the mortgage fraud. Generally, the more money which is lost in a mortgage fraud scam, the greater the sentence the defendant receives. In some cases, a defendant may be subjected to sentencing enhancements which means the defendant receives a greater sentence. A defendant may receive an enhancement for the role in the offense if the court determines that the defendant was an organizer, supervisor, or a recruiter, or used a sophisticated means to facilitate a crime, abused a position a trust, or targeted a vulnerable victim such as a disabled or elderly person. However, federal judges now have wide latitude for imposing a sentence because they must consider the broad statutory factors set forth in 18 U.S.C. 3553(a)which include the nature and circumstances of the offense and the history and characteristics of the defendant, the need for the sentence imposed to reflect the seriousness of the offense, to promote respect for the law, and to provide just punishment for the offense, the need to afford adequate deterrence to criminal conduct, the need to protect the public from further crimes of the defendant, the need to provide the defendant with needed educational or vocational training, medical care, or other correctional treatment in the most effective manner, the kinds of sentences available, the sentence recommended by the Sentencing Guidelines and any applicable guidelines or policy statement therein, the need to avoid sentence disparities, and the need for restitution.

There are some important strategic decisions which need to be made for the defendant who has been charged or indicted for mortgage fraud. The defendant and his lawyer should seriously consider the consequences of pleading guilty if he has in fact committed the crime. A mortgage fraud defendant can receive up to a 3 level downward departure for pleading guilty. A criminal lawyer representing a mortgage fraud defendant can also file a motion for a downward departure and/or a motion for a variance and argue factors to the court in support of an additional decrease in a defendant's sentence. The mortgage fraud defendant's criminal attorney should closely scrutinize the circumstances of the case and the defendant's background and criminal history in order to help minimize the amount of time to be served. A valuable tip for an attorney representing a criminal mortgage fraud defendant in South Carolina is to consider mitigating factors such as disparate sentences, 5K departures for cooperation, aberrant behavior, property values, family ties, extraordinary rehabilitation, diminished mental capacity, extraordinary restitution should be considered as possible justifications for a lesser sentence.

A white collar criminal defense attorney in South Carolina must have an understanding of the basics of the mortgage fraud in order to adequately represent clients who have been charged or indicted with mortgage fraud violations. Recognizing the difference between the status of being a target, subject or witness can have important consequences in how a case is handled. A white collar bank fraud or mortgage fraud criminal conviction can have life altering consequences for those defendants convicted of the same. A defendant who is charged or indicted with the federal crime of mortgage fraud should consult with a SC criminal lawyer who is knowledgeable about the different types of these scams, how the scams are carried out, the law enforcement investigatory process, the grand jury process, substantive law regarding mortgage fraud, the applicable federal sentencing guidelines and approaches available to minimize a defendant's potential sentence.

© 2010 Joseph P. Griffith, Jr.

Criminal Law Information

According to criminal law, crimes are offences against the social order. In common law jurisdictions, there is a legal fiction that crimes disturb the peace of the sovereign. Government officials, as agents of the sovereign, are responsible for the prosecution of offenders. Hence, the criminal law "plaintiff" is the sovereign, which in practical terms translates into the monarch or the people.

The major objective of criminal law is deterrence and punishment, while that of civil law is individual compensation. Criminal offences consist of two distinct elements; the physical act (the actus reus, guilty act) and the requisite mental state with which the act is done (the mens rea, guilty mind). For example, in murder the 'actus reus is the unlawful killing of a person, while the 'mens rea is malice aforethought (the intention to kill or cause grievous injury). The criminal law also details the defenses that defendants may bring to lessen or negate their liability (criminal responsibility) and specifies the punishment which may be inflicted. Criminal law neither requires a victim, nor a victim's consent, to prosecute an offender. Furthermore, a criminal prosecution can occur over the objections of the victim and the consent of the victim is not a defense in most crimes.

Criminal law in most jurisdictions both in the common and civil law traditions is divided into two fields:

* Criminal procedure regulates the process for addressing violations of criminal law

* Substantive criminal law details the definition of, and punishments for, various crimes.

Criminal law distinguishes crimes from civil wrongs such as tort or breach of contract. Criminal law has been seen as a system of regulating the behavior of individuals and groups in relation to societal norms at large whereas civil law is aimed primarily at the relationship between private individuals and their rights and obligations under the law. Although many ancient legal systems did not clearly define a distinction between criminal and civil law, in England there was little difference until the codification of criminal law occurred in the late nineteenth century. In most U.S. law schools, the basic course in criminal law is based upon the English common criminal law of 1750 (with some minor American modifications like the clarification of mens rea in the Model Penal Code).

Types of criminal law are: Arrests and Searches, Drug Crimes, Juvenile Law, Drunk Driving / DUI / DWI , Parole, Probation, Pardons, Violent Crimes, White Collar Crimes and Military Law.

Criminal Defense Lawyer - Finding the Best Defense Lawyer for You

There are a number of reasons that someone may need the help of a criminal defense lawyer. A good one is not cheap, but a conviction on your record can cost you over and over for the rest of your life. First of all are the very real possibilities of large fines and time behind bars. However, even misdemeanor convictions can keep you from getting a good job. Although many potential employers will tell you that they will only check back through 7 years of your criminal history, that is largely a myth. When a criminal history report is generated your ENTIRE criminal history will be visible. Whether an employer admits it or not, your history will influence your chances of being hired no matter how far back the charges or convictions may have occurred. Many offenses will keep you from being able to rent an apartment or condominium.

Prior convictions will cause law enforcement to scrutinize you more closely if you are suspected of or charged with a crime in the future. It may influence sentencing in future cases and can wreak havoc in your life in many ways. These days, people even check criminal history reports before going on a date for the first time. In other words, if the need arises you need to defend yourself vigorously to achieve the best outcome possible and the best way to do that is to hire the best defense attorney you can find and can afford.

The most common areas where people may need the assistance of a criminal defense attorney are:

  1. Domestic Violence- In some domestic violence cases, false accusations are made out of spite or to further the alleged victim's own agenda. In a divorce proceeding, for example, a mother may claim spousal abuse in order to harm her husband's credibility in a custody battle.

  2. DUI and DWI Cases- When are stopped by a law enforcement official for suspicion of drunk driving, there are defined rules which must be followed prior to and during the stop. A violation of procedures may be a violation of your rights and might significantly weaken the prosecution's case against you. Look for a defense attorney who specializes in this area of criminal law. They will look for the following:
    • Was there probable cause to stop you
    • Was a breath test properly administered
    • Was the person administering the test qualified to do so
    • Was the test equipment accurate and functioning properly
  3. Juvenile Crimes - In the case of juvenile charges, a criminal defense attorney is needed who knows how to work within the juvenile system. You need a good negotiator and someone who is skilled at getting the charges reduced or dropped.

  4. Federal Charges - The time to hire a good attorney in federal cases is ideally while an investigation is under way prior to charges being filed. Federal charges are generally serious and carry stiff penalties. An attorney who is experienced with the federal criminal justice system and understands the investigative process and procedural steps is critical to initiate a good defense. Some of the most common legal problems associated with federal charges include:
    • Medicare and Medicaid fraud
    • Drug conspiracy
    • Mortgage Fraud
    • Money laundering
    • Tax fraud
    • RICO Act and Racketeering Crimes

When you are faced with criminal charges or under investigation, an experienced and knowledgeable criminal defense attorney can help you protect your rights. A criminal defense lawyer who understands the law, the process and has experience in the area of criminal law which applies to your situation can help you evaluate your options and make the right decisions.

Understanding Juvenile Criminal Law - Why Hire a Juvenile Criminal Attorney?

Why Hire an Attorney Specialized in Juvenile Criminal Law?

While it may be tempting to try to avoid the expense of hiring an attorney for the less serious offenses, it is wise not to underestimate the consequences of inexperienced defense. What might result in a simple fine or slap on the wrist in adult court could lead to a minor's removal from his home to a juvenile detention center. Likewise, an overworked and underpaid court-appointed lawyer could be the unwitting catalyst to your child's incarceration.

An experienced juvenile criminal law attorney takes it upon him/herself to know the particulars of the juvenile's situation, from their standing at school to their home life. The juvenile lawyer spends the time getting to know the minor that a public defender simply doesn't have, and in turn relays that minor's story to the judge, district attorney and probation officer; in effect, the attorney becomes the voice of the minor.

An attorney specialized and experienced in juvenile law understands the amount of discretion a judge in juvenile court has and is well versed in how to make a case for rehabilitation rather than punishment. An experienced attorney could also mean the difference between the minor being detained or allowed to go home for the time period of the initial hearing. There are numerous consequences to hiring inadequate counsel in this delicate area of the law, such as:

  • The minor may be incarcerated due to inexperienced negotiating on the part of the attorney
  • The parents will have to foot the bill for the incarceration period at a juvenile detention hall
  • The chances of the minor getting locked up with gang members is substantial
  • The offense will go on the minor's permanent record
  • In the event of incarceration, the minor may have to be moved to a different school district after release, depending on the leniency of the current district

An experienced juvenile criminal lawyer may be able to achieve non-incarceration solutions that a non-specialized lawyer cannot, such as placement of the minor in rehabilitation programs, payment of restitution to victims, imposition of court-imposed curfews, mandatory school attendance, or placement in a juvenile detention facility. The judgments made at this crux in the minor's life can very often determine his/her path well into adult life; the election of a skilled and specialized attorney is crucial.

How to Hire a Juvenile Criminal Law Attorney

The fee range for juvenile criminal law representation is very wide, but it will increase greatly if the matter must actually be tried in front of a judge; hence, it is highly advisable to hire the most experienced attorney that can be afforded.

Certain documents should be prepared ahead of time before the first meeting with a juvenile criminal law attorney. These documents may include: the minor's birth certificate, school work documentation, such as report cards, special awards, etc., documentation of employment, such as pay stubs, proof of church involvement, if applicable, and copies of prior juvenile court records or police reports. Additionally, if the minor has any health conditions that may be seriously complicated by detention, proof in the form of medical records or doctor's notes should also be provided. Witness information should also be prepared at this time.

Know the Criminal Defense Lawyer Fees Before Hiring an Attorney For Your Case

There might be times when you will need to go to a defense lawyer. If you are in the United States, it will be great to get attorneys who offer initial consultation without any charge. They commonly set flat criminal defense lawyer fees. You will be required to pay up to $5,000 if you are confronting a misdemeanor criminal lawsuit. DUI cases have a higher rate; it might cost you up to $10,000. And finally, if you are dealing with criminal law violation case, the rate might reach $25,000. However, that is not the last bill that will come to you; the fees for federal or state courts can cost you much higher.

In every meeting with your lawyer, always tell him the facts of the case as well as your history so that the attorney can make an accurate assessment. Those facts you give to him will be reviewed. The lawyer will then try to find the possible defenses to help you in the court.

Defense attorneys are professionals who are able to assess your situation. Your lawyer will tell you honestly about any difficulties to resolve your case. It will be important for you to be comfortable with your legal counsel. You can assure this by conducting meetings with him. You cannot expect to resolve a legal case on your own; you will need the help of a good defense lawyer.

A good defense attorney will not supply you with sweet promises. Professional lawyers will only present you with facts. So if you meet a legal professional who says that you can definitely win the case with his help, go away from him. Get a defense lawyer who possesses good reputation and great work ethic to assist you with your situation. A professional attorney will provide you with the details of the case and the laws that you have to deal with. He will require you to pay 25 to 50 percent of the fee as a down payment.

The string of payments is not over at this point. After paying your lawyer, you still have many bills to pay. There are some expenses like government documents, expert witnesses, deposition rooms, record copies, transcripts, process servers, depositions, witness fees, and many others.

All of those expenses are addressed to you and are not part of the legal fees. You must know all of those expenses in order to measure your potential ability to hire a defense lawyer. Settling a problem in the court is never cheap, so learn more about the law so that you might not break it again in the future.

Though you might easily find criminal defense lawyers, it is a great idea to know the kind of actions that are regarded as criminal law violation. Some of those crime are felony offense, drug possession, marijuana use, juvenile, state crimes, misdemeanor, violent crimes, guns possessions, burglaries, etc. You must not underestimate the importance of a lawyer consultation because you cannot escape after you break the law.

If you are involved in an incident, go to a defense attorney as soon as possible. He will help you to determine your level of guilt in the case. You might want to take advantage of their free consultation service if it is available.

Criminal Law Case Study - Preventing Future WikiLeak Fiascos - Make Fewer Documents Classified

With the nearly one-million people with some form of security clearance in our government or access to such documents in the private sector, it shouldn't surprise anyone that whistle blower" websites like WikiLeaks are able to get their hands on 100s of thousands of documents and mutli-media classified, confidential, or even perhaps top secret documents.

The government is obviously doing whatever they can to shore up the classified, confidential, or top secret leaks. In fact, the Obama Administration sent out a memo on this to all the agencies. It was a confidential memo of course, so it immediately ended up on all the websites. But I guess that shows how endemic the problem is, and how tough the future challenge might be.

There was an interesting book, report put out recently, that I think anyone interested in this topic ought to read, as it is well worth your time, go ahead and read it now, and then come back to this article of mine and let's talk;

Interesting report recently titled; "What Should Be Classified - A Framework with Application to the Global Force Management Data Initiative" by MC Libicki, BA Jackson, DR Frelinger, BE Lachman, and N Kalra; RAND Corp, Santa Monica, CA, (2011), 110 pages, Library of Congress Control Number: 2010940485; ISBN: 978-0-8330-5001-4.

The most interesting thing in all this is Daniel Ellsberg, the traitor in the Pentagon Papers Case (look that up on WikiPedia and then again come back to this article) actually took those documents from the RAND Corp, the same group that wrote this book or report - so I bet, they ought to know a thing or two about that. Similarly, Private Manning who data dumped massive amounts of classified intelligence on WikiLeaks betrayed our nation and his sworn duty.

Now then, how do we stop all this? Well, there are a couple of things we do need to change. One is we need to stop stamping everything "classified" or "confidential" when it really isn't. I've had conversations with people in government who couldn't believe all the things I knew about, which they believed were classified, of course, they couldn't confirm or deny it, nor did I want them too for their own sake and job security.

Still, there is a whole lot in the media, which is widely common knowledge in various industries, or to news junkies. And since these days with the rapid informational flow - classified really means, "oh like one week, two at tops!" So, one the cat is out of the bag, un-classify all this old stuff because that will do three things;

(1) It will get the workforce handling the information more serious about what still is classified.
(2) It will increase speed of communication, thus efficiency.
(3) It will save a ton of money trying to keep things secret which aren't and everyone knows it.

Indeed, I hope you will please consider all this and think on it.

Federal Criminal Defense Lawyers - 6 Things to Remember When Looking For a Qualified Attorney

Most people never think they will ever need the help of a criminal defense lawyer and therefore really have no idea what they should be looking for should the unfortunate task of looking for one come up. Whether you are guilty or not guilty of any particular criminal offense, it is still important to get the best lawyer you possibly can find for what you might be charged with. There are tons of federal criminal defense lawyers listed in the Internet and it can be a huge task just trying to go through the lists to find one.

When looking for one, the most important issues you will need to face is trust, whether or not you feel you can trust the lawyer you hire. With so many federal criminal defense lawyers out there to choose from it is hard to know whom to trust. The guides below should make your search a little less daunting overall.

1) It does not matter if you know your case is going to trial or if there has been a plea bargain in the offering, you still want to make sure you feel that you can trust the lawyer and his or her skills. You need to find out if the attorney you might be considering has many experience in federal cases and if they have had a lot of trial and jury experience. Even if it is not going to trial, it is best that the lawyer does have this experience. A legal counsel that is inexperienced is going to run into problems understanding and visualizing all of the strengths and or weaknesses of your particular case. This could end up hurting your case in the end.

2) Make sure that you do not go with an attorney that gets involved with other types of law like divorce law, personal injury law, etc. This means in the long run that this type of lawyer does not specialize in the types of things that is important to your case. This type of legal professional is not going to be knowledgeable enough to understand everything that is needed to handle your case.

3) It is also important to note that you should stay away from lawyers that make promises about your case and the final outcome. It is truly impossible to be able to predict exactly how the case will end up. You should never trust an attorney that promises that they will be definitely be able to win your case, because any good lawyer knows that is an impossible promise because anything can happen during the length of the case. Lawyers that make improbable promises should be avoided at all cost.

4) The attorney you choose should be able to go over your case with you and explain it in words that are easy for you to understand. They should be able to easily explain your charges and what to expect at the trial. They should be able to explain to you concisely what the prosecutor needs to do to prove their case against you and what to expect during your trial. A qualified and good lawyer needs to be able to be boldly honest with you about what could happen to you if they do not win your case.

5) Although money of course is an issue when it comes to finding a lawyer, it truly should not be your top priority. You need to understand when you have federal criminal charges against you there are far more things at stake than just money. You need to make sure that the lawyer you choose is not only trained well and knowledgeable about federal and criminal laws but is also compassionate about their work.

6) Always feel free to discuss the cost with your attorney. A qualified lawyer should be knowledgeable enough to be able to give you a true quote within your first consultation. Generally, fees are based upon whether it is going to trial and the severity of the crime that you are being charged with.

Any lawyer that you pick should be willing to talk to you when it comes to your case in terms that you understand. They should be willing to break it down into terms easy for you to comprehend. They should be willing to talk to you about your case at any time and be willing to return your calls in a timely manner and answer any of the questions that you might have. They also should be able to give you continual updates on your case and how it is going.

Criminal Law - Artificial Intelligent Court Rooms - What are the Future Implications?

In 2001 someone created virtual reality court room games which were used to help train trial lawyers. Soon, the government wanted to use AI virtual reality software systems to choose jurors. Next, the software makers came up with decision matrix systems to run scenarios of the most possible outcomes of a trial if the given jurors were to listen to the trial and come to a verdict, which brings me to my next comment, a question actually, one which may very well be met with animosity by all the humans running the so-called "fair" judicial system.

Why do we need humans to run the court system at all?

Why not have robotic police pick up human criminals, and take them to a cell, then to court, day or night and try them right then and there based on the algorithms and data programmed into the Artificial Intelligence software from 100,000 trials and court cases? Updated daily, in real-time in the remaining human court run systems. After all, we need to save budget money right, and the tax payer's want a discount right?

And currently, most folks who get into hot water with the law cannot afford 1000s of dollars to get out of Dodge. Indeed, not too long ago, I was discussing this topic with a fellow think tanker, Troy Laclaire. He was concerned that the court system running solely by computer might become compromised. Still, I like the idea myself as a tax payer, and so I told him point blank; "The court system is already compromised, there is only the illusion of justice now. It's better than most countries obviously, but, it couldn't get worse with AI."

I really doubt many would disagree with that reality. Troy considers all this and states; "I would think you would still have to have the human jurors, however if you can remove the "human element" you may get more cases decided on the "logic" rather than emotional aspects of a case."

Yes, there is always that risk, and yet, maybe criminals should have considered that before doing their crimes. I am pro-death penalty. Troy who is "not exactly against the death penalty" stated that; "we've heard of a few cases where the death penalty has been carried out and later found that the person was innocent, or people waiting to be put to death are released due to new information." Sure, but Troy also states; "I guess as the technology improves, these could be worked out however."

No doubt they would and the amount of money saved would pay for the system almost immediately, and we'd have more justice for all. Please consider all this.

Hiring a Criminal Attorney

For anyone who is facing criminal charges there is a right to a court appointed Tampa criminal attorney. However you may wish to hire a private attorney to represent you instead. Hiring a criminal attorney to give you legal counsel is an important part of presenting a successful defense of your case and the benefits of having a lawyer are numerous.

If you are thinking about hiring a Tampa criminal attorney then you should consider the benefits they can bring to your case which may not immediately be obvious. These benefits include some of the following:

  • Dealing with and communicating with court officials who may otherwise refuse to deal with defendants who want to represent themselves
  • Present the possibility of pre-trial programs
  • Give advice and support about the nature of the charges against the defendant and the potential outcome of a guilty verdict
  • Compiling a defense based on aspects of the law and other legal precedents, which have been interpreted and understood as being applicable to the particular case
  • Present an expert defense argument in court including finding witnesses for the defense, contradicting the prosecution's evidence and interviewing key witnesses

Whilst hiring a Tampa criminal attorney is an option for those who can afford it, others may wish to self-represent themselves in court. By and large this route is often unsuccessful and often ends with a judge ruling that the defendant is not legally competent enough to present an adequate defense. If you cannot afford to hire a private attorney, then your best option is to request a court appointed lawyer through the court. It is worth noting that private lawyers have only a marginally higher success rate than their court appointed counterparts.

When looking for a criminal attorney you should remember that is best to hire a lawyer who practices within the state in which the crime was committed and ultimately your trial will be held. Many attorneys will take on any type of criminal case, but you may wish to seek a lawyer who specializes in cases relevant to yours. It is common to find attorneys who work as sole practitioners or within a larger firm or group of partners.

Choosing the right Tampa criminal attorney to represent you is a matter of personal choice and circumstances. You need to feel comfortable working with them and confident in their abilities to achieve the result you are looking for. Other factors will undoubtedly include cost, the method in which they wish to paid - many lawyers will want at least a portion of their fees upfront; and their accessibility, a common complaint is that lawyers are too difficult to contact in person.

Meet with several lawyers in your local area before deciding on whom to hire. If you have previously been to court then you may wish to hire the same attorney, or otherwise follow up on recommendations from friends and family.

Criminal Law - Risk Factors in Youth

In this article, we're going to be taking a look at some of the factors that play a part in youth committing crime. Juvenile delinquents are not rare by any means. In general, crime is higher in the age group encompassing fifteen and twenty-five. The range of crimes is also quite a long list and certainly not limited to violent crimes and other offenses where monetary gain is the main target.

Psychological and behavioural risk factors include, but are not limited to, intelligence, impulsiveness and the inability to delay aggression and other things like gratification. Another example is restlessness. Certain people with personality disorders are more likely to become criminals if their condition - when not properly treated regularly - results in restlessness and lack of empathy.

One affects the other, as we can see from a lot of studies conducted into juvenile delinquency statistics. Children with a lower intelligence are likely to not fare well in school and other state learning institutions, which then affects the child psychologically. With less chances of netting a high-paying job that will ensure a comfortable, stress-free life, kids will be more inclined to take out their rage and disappointment on others. Lack of educational excellence is a factor in crime in and of itself. The same children who do not perform to the highest standards at school are likely to also become truants, leading to opportunities for crime and hanging with the wrong crowd. The Farrington reports back this up, saying that truanting is linked to offending.

Attaining wealth and status the legal way, or at least seeing a clear path to such attainment, usually halts criminal activity. The criminal activity in this case, then, is not one to simply survive but also to flourish, shedding some light on human nature and the willingness to commit illegal activities in the face of underachievement.

Intelligence is definitely one of the biggest factors to consider. However, measuring, identifying and testing for intelligence can be extremely troublesome. Further to this is the fact that that so many studies and IQ tests are completely different! This does not inspire confidence in kids who will do well in one version of a test and fail in another version that is, for instance, more visual and not so much writing-oriented.

These are just a few of the things affecting today's youth. For further information, see the book "Understanding Criminology," written in 2003, a truly excellent resource.

How to Find an Indiana Criminal Defense Lawyer

Although no one ever hopes they'll need a criminal defense lawyer, the need arises more often than you might imagine. If you live in Indiana - whether in South Bend, Crown Point, Indianapolis, Valparaiso, or any other city or town - it's important to be able to find a good criminal defense attorney in your time of need. But how do you go about assessing the strengths of an attorney? Here are some tips to help you select a lawyer that meets your needs and circumstances.

Geographic Familiarity

While laws apply to the entire state, each Indiana county has its own approach to criminal justice. As is true for every state, there is some variation in law enforcement from area to area. Judges, prosecuting attorneys, and probation officers have quite a bit of leeway in how misdemeanor and felony cases are handled. It's important, then, to find a criminal defense lawyer or legal team that has experience in the geographic area where the crime was allegedly committed. Local approaches and procedures can affect the outcome of a case, and a lawyer who is familiar with those differences can work them to his client's advantage.

Type of Criminal Charge

Some criminal defense attorneys specialize in one type of criminal charge, such as crimes involving a weapon, or traffic ticket appeals, or sentence modification. The best criminal defense lawyers, however, have a broad range of experience in a variety of charges - everything from traffic ticket appeals to felony DUI to carjacking to homicide. Make sure that you select a lawyer who has a broad range of experience, and who is a seasoned trial attorney. Hopefully, the case will never go to trial, but if it does, you want to ensure that you have the best representation available to you or your loved one.

Fighting on Behalf of the Client

A good criminal defense lawyer takes a number of steps to ensure that his client obtains the most favorable outcome. The first step is to take the time to examine the facts of the case. An experienced attorney can see where the police investigation may have been weak, where the prosecution's evidence is lacking, and whether or not Indiana law has been correctly applied to the case.

The next step is to take proactive steps on the client's behalf. By offering a client's defense in the best possible light, and by acting in a timely manner, a good attorney can often have charges for the most serious crimes dismissed or lowered in severity. In contrast, the clients of lawyers who wait until the last minute are rarely offered the best outcomes.

Cost and Availability

When looking for an Indiana criminal defense attorney, cost may not be the primary consideration, but it does enter the picture. Some of the best lawyers offer free initial consultations for the specific problem you or your loved one are facing.

When making your choice, you have a right to expect that your lawyer will be available to you when you need him. Facing criminal charges can be frightening, depressing, and stressful. Knowing that your lawyer is available in a timely manner to answer your questions and address your concerns is of primary importance.

With the right Indiana criminal defense attorney, your legal troubles will soon be behind you or your loved one, and you can get back to enjoying life.