If you’ve been charged with a federal crime in Jefferson City, you are looking at a punishment far more severe than a few days in prison or some small fines.
However, the criminal justice system allows you the right to defend yourself in a court of law with the possibility of having the charges against you dismissed.
At the very least, if you have a good defense lawyer fighting your case, you can strike a favorable plea bargain with the prosecutor and have your punishment reduced significantly. Your fate may boil down to hiring an experienced lawyer you hire to fight your case. A defense lawyer can do a lot more than prove your innocence or reduce your punishment. They can create an ironclad defense for your case.
If you have been charged with a criminal offense in Jefferson City, MO, you can schedule a consultation with Kirsch & Kirsch, LLC. Whether you’ve been charged with a felony, a misdemeanor, a DUI, or a serious traffic infraction, our attorneys will protect your rights under the law. Contact us today to get started on your case.
What Are Federal Charges?
In the United States, federal charges are levied against those who are suspected of violating the federal laws of the country. If you violate any of the federal laws, you will be investigated by government agencies like the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Homeland Security Department, etc. Your case will then be brought before federal prosecutors.
The penalties for such offenses tend to be more severe than state and local criminal offenses. What’s more concerning is that about 90% of people who get prosecuted in any federal court get convicted for their crime. Such a staggering conviction rate proves just how difficult it is to get acquitted when you’re up against the federal government.
Types Of Federal Charges
There are several types of federal charges. This section will provide a rundown of the most common types of federal charges. Remember that federal penalties tend to be more severe than state charges, the prosecution rates are higher, and convicted felons tend to serve most of their sentence in prison. If you have been charged with a federal crime, you need to hire an experienced and knowledgeable lawyer. Your best bet in Jefferson City, MO, is Kirsch & Kirsch, LLC. These top-tier attorneys defend the accused against:
- Armed robbery
- Cyber crimes
- Possession Of controlled substances
- White-collar crimes (money laundering, mortgage fraud, health care fraud, credit card fraud, and bank fraud)
- Federal sex crimes
- Violent crimes
- Federal drug offenses
Many other crimes are classified under the respective umbrellas of the above-mentioned broad categories. If you’re charged with a federal offense, it is important to speak to a lawyer and learn your options before the time runs out. Since you’ll be up against federal government agencies over serious crimes — armed robbery, drug trafficking, etc. — you’ll need to have a solid legal defense to present your case and have a chance at having the charges against you dismissed.
How Are Federal Sentencing Guidelines Calculated?
Federal charges often result in incarceration. The duration of the sentence can depend on several factors, but the primary consideration is the severity of the offense committed by the offender. Here is a summary of how federal sentencing guidelines are calculated, as per the United States Sentencing Commission.
Severity of the Offense
There are 43 levels of offense severity. The more serious the crime is, the higher the level is, and the greater the punishment.
Base offense level
Base offense level is the starting point for ascertaining the punishment of any crime. The higher the baseline offense level, the more serious the crime. The baseline levels are numerical values, so crimes with an offense level of 20 will have more severe consequences than crimes with baseline levels of 2 or 4.
Along with baseline values, all federal crimes are distinguished based on specific offense characteristics for the crime. These characteristics play a key role in deciding what baseline level would be allotted for a specific crime. Offense characteristics can mean stiffer penalties.
For instance, if a person has been charged with fraud, which has a baseline level of which is 7, the level could increase if the losses involved in the fraud are significant, as opposed to standard losses that occur in fraud cases. With a $6,000 loss, the baseline level is increased by 2, while for a $50,000 loss, the level is increased by 6. An experienced federal crimes defense lawyer can calculate how offense characteristics can impact your maximum exposure.
Adjustments are another element that can influence the base offense level of crimes. Factors like the offender’s role in the offense, victim-related adjustments, as well as the involvement of obstruction of justice can affect probable penalties. For instance, if the offender was vulnerable because of a mental or a physical condition, then their baseline level could be reduced, usually about 2 levels.
Likewise, if the involvement of the offender was minimal, then their offense level could be reduced yet again by 4 levels. In the case of obstruction of justice, the level is increased by 2. While having your baseline level calculated by your criminal defense lawyer, it is important to be 100% honest if you want to have a fair chance of winning your case.
Another factor considered in federal sentencing is the criminal history of the offender. There are 6 criminal history categories for offenders. First-timers usually find themselves in the criminal history category I since it’s the least serious category and may face relatively milder punishments. Category VI, needless to say, is the most severe category and consists of offenders with extremely serious crimes to their name.
How Can An Attorney Can Help You
A federal criminal defense lawyer may be able to help you by addressing the legal aspects of your federal case. Here is a summary of all the things that your criminal defense lawyer can do for you if you are facing serious federal criminal charges in the United States:
- Assess the prosecutorial case against you
- File motions to suppress evidence that was obtained illegally
- Attempt to reduce your bail
- Develop a defense strategy
- Negotiate a plea bargain with the prosecutor
- Provide recommendations and personal insights into the case through a professional and legal perspective
- Brief you on the laws regarding your specific federal crime
- Fight for a sentence reduction if you’re convicted
- File an appeal
If you’re facing federal charges, you want your lawyer to perform all of these functions, get in touch with an experienced lawyer. The federal criminal defense lawyers at Kirsch & Kirsch, LLC have extensive experience in fighting for their clients, and each attorney has an excellent track record of success. During the initial consultation, you can brief us on the specifics of the case, and in the later consultations, we will come up with a defense strategy.
Kirsch & Kirsch, LLC
T.J. Kirsch and Erin Kirsch are two of the most knowledgeable federal criminal defense attorneys in Jefferson City, with years of experience between them in fighting and winning criminal defense cases. They understand just how complex criminal defense cases can be. Even the mere accusation of some federal crimes can destroy the futures of innocent people. The emotional and mental toll of a criminal case can be enormous. The Kirsch & Kirsch team is not just a group of lawyers. They are your allies. Not only will they help you get the justice you deserve, but they can also serve as an emotional rock for you as you go through the traumatic experience of clearing your name. Here are some of the practice areas in which they have extensive experience on state and federal levels:
If you have been charged with any of these crimes, schedule a consultation with Kirsch & Kirsch, LLC to get started on your case. Our attorneys will begin working on your defense immediately.
Frequently Asked Questions
Will I go to prison if I’m facing criminal charges?
This depends on a number of factors, including the strength of the federal case, the legality of the evidence against you, the nature of the crime, and other aggravating and mitigating circumstances. If you want to avoid going to jail, it’s important to hire an experienced criminal defense attorney who can fight the charges. If this isn’t possible, they can negotiate for the best outcome.
Do I need to hire a criminal defense attorney if I plan on pleading guilty?
Yes. Even if you plan on throwing yourself on the mercy of the court, you will want to retain an experienced federal crimes attorney to help you get the best plea deal possible. The prosecutor is under no obligation to recommend a lighter sentence unless its part of a negotiation, so consult an attorney before you speak to the prosecutor about pleading guilty.
Jefferson City Federal Crimes Lawyers
If you’ve been charged with a federal crime in Jefferson City, MO, your entire future is at stake. Retain a battle-tested criminal defense lawyer from Kirsch & Kirsch, LLC.
Contact us today to get started on your case.