Roanoke, Virginia Federal Criminal Defense Lawyer
The federal government has a system of laws which are separate from those of Virginia. Violation of the U.S. criminal code will result in a defendant being charged in federal court. Such cases are considered very serious in nature. The accused will be prosecuted by the United States Department of Justice. This means that one is defending themselves against the full might of the federal government. Not all attorneys are licensed to practice in federal court. It is, therefore, crucial that you retain counsel who has the ability and experience necessary to handle your matter. Cerid Lugar is a Roanoke federal criminal defense lawyer and is licensed in the Western District of Virginia. Cerid prides herself on providing the highest levels of service and she will give your case the attention it deserves. Contact us today to schedule an initial consultation.
Roanoke attorney assisting Virginia residents who have been charged by the U.S. government
The federal government has its own set of criminal laws which are embodied in Title 18 of the U.S. criminal code. Arrests for violating these provisions may be made by the F.B.I., other federal agencies, or local police. Federal charges often include “high level” forms of conduct such as drug trafficking, the transportation of illegal items across state lines, conspiracy, etc. Cases can also involve other conduct, such as illegally possessing a firearm after having been convicted of a felony. Charges will be brought by the U.S. Attorney’s office. If a defendant is convicted of the offenses, then they will be sentenced pursuant to the federal sentencing guidelines.
A federal case begins when the defendant is indicted by the Grand Jury. Most often, an accused will know about a case prior to indictment by receiving a “subject” or “target” letter from the U.S. Attorney’s office. If charged, the accused will be arraigned before a federal magistrate judge and will enter a “not guilty” plea. If the accused is detained, the federal magistrate judge will consider granting a bonding pending trial. A trial date will be placed on the Court’s docket and the prosecution will provide defense counsel with arrest reports, witness statements, and other information which must be disclosed under Brady v. Maryland. Federal charges, such as those involving guns or drugs, often revolve around the issue of whether law enforcement obtained incriminating evidence by violating the defendant’s rights. If such a violation occurred, then the accused may file a Motion to Suppress any such evidence. Depending on the circumstances, such a Motion may result in the dismissal of the charges. If a dismissal cannot be obtained, and a resolution cannot be reached with the prosecutors, then it will be necessary to prepare the case for trial. This will include conducting a full investigation, potentially retaining experts, and interviewing witnesses. The Federal Rules of Evidence will be strictly enforced at a trial and the Court’s procedures must be followed. It is, therefore, important to retain a lawyer experienced in such matters.
Cerid Lugar is a Roanoke attorney assisting those who face federal charges in the Western District of Virginia. She will use your initial consultation to gain an understanding of how you became a subject or target of the Federal Government and to help you understand what it is you should expect from the process. She will obtain all available evidence and launch a full investigation. This will include visiting the scene of the incident and interviewing potential witnesses. If she believes that law enforcement obtained evidence through an illegal search and seizure, then she will file all necessary Motions with the Court. Cerid will fully examine the arresting officers at an evidentiary hearing and argue for exclusion of the evidence. If a dismissal is not granted, then she will work to resolve your matter on the most favorable terms possible. If a fair resolution is not reached, then she will not hesitate to take your case to trial and will make sure that your rights are protected from beginning to end. You are facing a serious situation and we will take it seriously. Contact us today.
Lawyer providing quality service to Virginia residents who face federal charges
Our lawyer understands the gravity of facing federal charges. This is why she strives to provide quality service in addition to the highest levels of representation. This high level of service will include promptly returning your phone calls, quickly responding to your emails, and ensuring that your questions are answered.
Our Virginia firm also serves the cities of Cave Spring, Salem, the Botetourt County city of Hollins, the Bedford County cities of Bedford and Forest, the Franklin County city of Rocky Mount, and the Montgomery County cities of Blacksburg, Christiansburg, and Radford.
At times, even if you are not a witness, subject, or target of a federal criminal investigation, your or your company may receive a federal grand jury subpoena for records. Cerid Lugar is experienced at assisting clients in responding to grand jury subpoenas, criminal investigative demands, and civil investigative demands issued by the United States or one of its many agencies. Many times, subpoenas demand more information than what they are entitled by law to request or receive. Cerid Lugar can help negotiate the scope of a subpoena and is ready and willing to challenge the legality of a subpoena in federal court if necessary. You and your company only have once chance at a first impression with federal agents or government attorneys.