The federal government has a number of different branches who would investigate further cases. Examples would be the FBI, the secret service, homeland security, the DEA (Drug Enforcement Agency) and ICE. There's a whole host of agencies depending on what area you're in.
Healthcare fraud has their own investigation team and insurance fraud has their own investigation team, so there's a whole bureaucracy of people who investigate federal crimes. As far as the prosecutors go, they're called Assistant United States Attorneys and they're the ones who prosecute federal crimes across the nation.
Should I Respond To Police After Discovering That I Am Being Investigated For Federal Crimes?
You should always remain silent whenever you're being investigated in any way for a federal crime. The type of terms that the Feds use when they think that somebody is a person of interest to them is they identify that person as a target of a federal investigation.
If you're identified as a target then they're looking to charge you. They think you've done something wrong and they probably already have evidence that in their mind, they believe, shows that you're involved with a crime.
By talking to you, all they're trying to do is get you to say something that will further incriminate you. I've seen cases where they're identifying somebody as a subject or a person of interest, which means that they're deciding what involvement that person has and maybe believe that person could be a witness, and I've seen people change from subject to target very quickly once they start asking them questions.
When it comes to investigating criminal federal cases, the government and their agents are not your friends. They're in a competitive business of ferreting out crimes. If you want to be able to protect your rights, your freedom, your reputation and everything that you have, you should immediately get a seasoned, savvy, federal criminal defense attorney.
What Should I Do If Federal Agents Request To Meet With Me In My Home?
If federal agents request to meet with you in your home you should hire an attorney and allow the attorney to contact them. Typically what I do in this situation is obviously I get all the information from the client about what they know as to why the federal agents may be knocking at their door and want to ask them questions.
I then contact them and tell them that I represent you. I then find out what it is they want to talk to you about. Obviously, I ask appropriate questions to try and really boil down and find out what their angle is and what information they have. I will tell them, “Let me speak to my client about it and I'll get back to you”, and then you and I will talk about it.
Then we will decide what if anything we tell them. If we decide not to tell them anything then I will call them back and say, “Based on my advice, the client is not going to answer any questions. If you guys do decide you want to arrest him, you can contact me and I'll have them surrender themselves.”
If there is a prosecutor involved, even better as I will then contact the prosecutor who is basically on level with me and I could find out exactly what's going on. The long story short, if they want to talk to you, you assert your right to remain silent and you tell them that you are going to have your attorney be in contact with them.
What Happens After I Am Arrested And Charged With A Federal Crime?
Typically once you get arrested, they are going to bring you before a magistrate within a day or two in the jurisdiction where your case is pending. You will be entitled to have a hearing as to whether or not you get detained by the federal government or not.
The bail in a federal case is not like it is in a state case. The magistrate can detain you, which means you basically can't get out until your case is over, or they can let you out on some sort of a condition, for example, a signature bond where you're basically promising to pay a certain amount of money if you don't show up or you could get friends or family to do that. There is also property bonds where you put up some property in order to secure your appearance. There is a number of different ways you can get out.
Once it's determined whether or not you get out then at some point you will be assigned to a judge. That judge will be on your case for the balance of your case. Your attorney will then be given that judge's rules, probably a status conference will be set, a jury trial date will be set and your attorney will be given the indictment, which are the charges against you.
You'll be given a copy of it to be able to review it and discuss it with your attorney. At some point, the government is going to be responsible for giving your attorney all the information and what they call discovery related to your case. Once your attorney gets all that they're going to come and see you, talk to you, and go over all with you so you can be prepared to defend yourself.
Obviously, along the way, your attorney and you are going to talk about what your best move is going forward and there are a number of different things that you can do to defend yourself in a federal case, whether it be going to trial or trying to negotiate with the federal government.
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