Crimes and civil infractions are typically charged at either the municipal, city, or state level depending on their severity. When a crime spans state lines, involves substantial amounts of money, or is caused by specific actions, the charges are automatically filed at the federal level. Whether a crime is charged at the federal or state level has significant impact on the sentence an offender may receive, the repercussions on his or her future, and the options the offender has for dismissing or mitigating the charges against them.
What Makes a Crime a “Federal Crime”?
Federal crimes are the most serious criminal offenses that one can be charged with. A federal indictment leads to involvement of the best prosecutors, investigators, and resources that can be difficult to combat without the requisite federal criminal defense charges experience. Federal crimes may include:
- Drug trafficking
- Mail fraud
- Identity offenses
- RICO violations
- Child pornography possession or distribution
- Tax evasion
- Money laundering
- Bank fraud
Essentially any crime that spans state lines, is committed over telephonic communications (such as the internet), or occurred on federal lands will be charged at the federal level. Some crimes may be tried at both the state and federal level depending on the nature and circumstances of the crime.
Federal drug trafficking is one of the most common federal drug crime charges in America. Drug trafficking includes the procurement, distribution, possession, or sale of everything ranging to prescription pills and marijuana to methamphetamines and “hard” drugs.
Individuals involved in drug trafficking regimes will be facing steep prison sentences, fines, and repercussions from others in their organized crime group. If you are under investigation or being asked questions about a drug trafficking regime, even if you are not “directly” involved, it is critical to speak with an experienced federal drug crime defense attorney so that you can assert your rights.
Most people do not understand that they are not forced to answer police questions. At a risk of seeming uncooperative, many people divulge incriminating information about themselves to officers during the course of an investigation. This can be particularly damaging in drug crimes cases, since even relatively minor involvement may implicate you in a federal crime regime.
Moreover, if you were involved in a regime, you may have concerns about you or your family’s safety if you speak with the police or hire a lawyer to defend you. In the vast majority of incidents, you are not required to speak to an officer and you can claim your Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination.
Federal Drug Crimes Defense Attorney
All crimes, regardless of whether they are charged at the federal or state level, are serious and have the potential to adversely affect your life indefinitely. Former prosecutor Ambrosio E. Rodriguez has significant experience working on federal drug crimes from both sides of the table; Attorney Rodriguez can work with prosecutors to advocate for lesser sentences or seek dismissal when possible, and has experience litigating both state and federal level criminal charges.
To learn more about your rights as a criminal defendant, or if you are being questioned about your involvement in a federal drug scheme, contact The Rodriguez Law Group today.