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DC Federal Financial Crimes Appeals

Federal financial crimes can have serious consequences, especially if you were wrongfully convicted or your sentence was particularly unfair. The good news is that you are allowed to appeal your conviction. If you want to know more about DC federal financial crimes appeals and how to begin the appeal process, speak with an experienced attorney that could guide you through the process.

The Financial Crimes Appeals Process

If a person has been convicted of a financial crime, the process of DC federal financial crimes appeals is similar to the process in any criminal case. Once a sentence is issued in the form of a formal, written judgment by the federal judge, they have 14 days to file a notice that they plan to appeal the conviction. After the notice is filed, a schedule is set up for filing written pleadings to the circuit court of appeals. When that is done, an initial brief is filed, the government files an opposition, and the defense files a reply to that opposition. The court then schedules an oral argument where the parties appear before three judges in the circuit court of appeals to argue the case.

If the appeal is granted, the case is sent back to the trial court for a new trial, or it could be that the case is remanded back for further findings on a particular issue or a hearing on a particular issue. If the appeal is denied, the defense has the option of attempting to appeal to the United States Supreme Court.

The Right to Appeal

It is important to understand that an appeal to the circuit court of appeals is an appeal as of right. Everyone convicted of a crime in a federal district court has the opportunity to file an appeal and appeal their case to the circuit court of appeals. Beyond that, people do not have an appeal as of right.

The United States Supreme Court is not required to hear a case. Someone may file a petition that outlines the issues they want the court to consider. The United States Supreme Court then votes on whether to accept the petition and hear the case. If they do not accept the petition, the defendants, unfortunately, lost their appeal and are at the end of the DC federal financial crimes appeals process.

What is a De Novo Review?

De novo review is one of the standards used when an appeal is considered by the circuit court of appeals or the U.S. Supreme Court. It means the appellate court looks at the issue with fresh eyes. For example, when there is an issue related to whether a piece of evidence should have been suppressed because it violated the United States Constitution, the court may do a de novo review. When it does this, the court does not assume that one side is right or wrong, they take new look at the issue because it is related to the constitution.

Sometimes, the circuit court of appeals looks at an issue under an abuse of discretion standard. If it does not relate to a constitutional issue and the trial court made a decision, the appellate court will determine whether the decision was within the trial court’s discretion. If the court rules that the decision is so wrong that it was an abuse of the trial court’s discretion, the conviction may be overturned.

Issues When Appealing for Federal Financial Crimes in DC

When a person appeals their conviction following a loss at trial, issues could be identified as being strategically advantageous to appeal. Not every issue at the trial is worth appealing. Research is done to determine what issues have a chance of success.

Cost is also involved. When an individual is indigent, and they cannot afford a lawyer, an appellate lawyer could be appointed to help them at the federal level and at the circuit court level to lessen the exorbitant cost of appealing a federal criminal conviction. If an individual wants to know more about DC federal financial crimes appeals, they should speak with a capable federal financial crimes lawyer that could help them.

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