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Legal Terms for a DC Federal Financial Crime Case

The sheer volume of legal terms for a DC federal financial crime case is enough to cause additional heartache and worry for anyone accused of a crime. Fortunately, there are a number of legal professionals who could help you build a defense to mitigate the charges brought forth against you. To start your case, reach out to a dedicated federal attorney today.

What Is a Subpoena

A subpoena is a legal document issued by a court that requires the presence of a person or the production of documents. The government is able to issue the order or a defense attorney might obtain a court order to be issued to specific people for the production of documents or the requirement that a person appears at trial. A subpoena is issued with the requirement that documents and a person’s presence be provided for a contested hearing or for a grand jury.

A Person’s Rights with Subpoena

A person or company does have certain rights when it comes to a subpoena being issued. A subpoena must be properly served, adhering to rules and case law that govern them. A subpoena issued from a federal court is usually served personally. When someone issues a subpoena that requires a person’s presence or requires them to produce documents, it must be personally served.

Someone must bring the subpoena to that person and that person needs to be identified and accept the subpoena. If the person refuses service or refuses to accept the subpoena, whoever served the subpoena and made the identification of the person could leave the subpoena and an affidavit stating that they identified and served the person.

A person served with a subpoena could move to quash the subpoena for a variety of reasons. For example, the subpoena may be improperly served or may have requested documents that are not relevant. When a person has an attorney, they may accept service on behalf of their client through an agreement with the prosecutor trying to serve the subpoena.

There could be a motion to quash on the basis that the person being subpoenaed has one of several privileges that prevents them from speaking or testifying in court. For example, if an investigation of a person’s doctor results in a subpoena for the doctor to testify, the doctor-patient privilege could prevent the doctor from testifying. The issue is litigated in court based on a motion to quash the subpoena. Sometimes, the motion may be granted and sometimes it might be granted as an item part depending on the testimony that was sought.

How Federal Financial Crimes Differ From Criminal Trials

Federal financial crimes cases could have more documents involved than other criminal trials. A non-financial crime case such as a bank robbery does not involve many documents. Most other criminal cases are more witness-based and grounded on eyewitness testimony. A federal financial crime case involves more documents including bank records, phone records, purchase orders, invoices, and credit card records.

The Burden of Proof the Government Must Meet

In a financial crimes trial, the government charges the person with a number of crimes. Those crimes have elements that the prosecutor must prove beyond a reasonable doubt in court. A common element in federal financial crimes is the involvement of interstate commerce. For example, an electronic signal or mail traveled from one state to another provides jurisdiction or the ability for the charge to appear in federal court. It is one of the factors that differentiates federal financial crimes trials from other types of trials that are not in federal court.

Potential Consequences

The maximum penalties associated with federal criminal charges differ and could be a maximum of five, 10, or 20 years in prison. Financial crimes in federal courts are governed by the United States Sentencing Guidelines. Those guidelines are not mandatory, but they must be considered when the judge determines the sentence. A calculation is made following the sentencing guidelines to identify the range of months and the judge may not go against the range of months when fashioning a sentence.

Common Administrative Sanctions

There are several common administrative sanctions. When someone is convicted of a crime in federal court, a sentence is issued by the federal judge and there may be accompanying administrative sanctions. As an example, if someone is a stockbroker, an administrative sanction could be issued by the SEC or another governing body. If the person is a doctor, an administrative sanction might be issued by the doctor’s state licensing bureau. That commonly happens. Even if a person is found not guilty at trial, administrative sanctions may be issued because the standard of proof in an administrative hearing is often less than it is in criminal court.

Cease-and-Desist Orders

A cease-and-desist order is usually found in a civil case. It is an official order from a government agency or court that requires an entity or individual to stop doing something. A cease and desist letter is issued by a lawyer on behalf of their client to inform someone that they need to stop doing something or the matter would be addressed in court.

For example, in a more limited civil context, if an individual feels threatened by someone else, they could go to court and get a temporary restraining order for a certain period of time. In a business context, a cease-and-desist order could be obtained from a court as a form of injunctive relief issued after a court proceeding by a judge.

Learn More About Legal Terms for a DC Federal Financial Crime Case

The legal terms for a DC federal financial crime case are nothing short of daunting in of themselves. Instead of trying to represent yourself or feeling overwhelmed, reach out to a dedicated attorney who could help defend you against allegations of criminal misconduct. Call today to set up your confidential consultation with an experienced legal representative.

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