If you are charged with a federal crime in Spartanburg or Greenville, it is important to get help from a lawyer who is not merely licensed to practice in federal courts but who also practices federal criminal defense law on a regular basis.
Being charged with a federal offense is not the same as facing a state criminal charge. Your attorney should be familiar with how the federal justice system works and know how to handle the variety of unique challenges that can arise in these cases.
What Is Different About Being Charged with a Federal Crime?
Facing federal prosecution is different than being charged with a crime under South Carolina law in many ways. These differences include:
- Your case will proceed in federal court: If you are charged with a federal crime, your case will be handled in the U.S. District Court for the District of South Carolina. It won’t go through a local municipal or magistrate court. Hearings in your case could be held at the Clement F. Haynsworth Federal Building in Greenville or Donald S. Russell Courthouse in Spartanburg.
- Federal prosecutors and agents will pursue your case: The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of South Carolina will prosecute your case, not the local solicitor’s office. This is an important difference. Federal prosecutors and the agencies they deal with such as the FBI, ATF, DEA and SEC often have more resources to put towards prosecutions than their state counterparts.
- Different sentencing and prison system: If you are convicted of a federal crime, you may face tougher consequences than you would if you were charged under South Carolina law. For instance, certain drug offenses can lead to longer sentences under federal law. Also, any sentence you serve would be in the federal prison system. As a result, you could be incarcerated in a facility that is a long way from home and family.
Because of these and other differences, it is important to work with a lawyer who:
- Understands distinct aspects of federal law (a body of law that is separate and apart from South Carolina law)
- Grasps the different rules of evidence and procedure that apply to federal cases
- Knows the way federal prosecutors approach cases
- Understands how to handle criminal appeals in the U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals.
Get Help from Harrison White’s Federal Crimes Attorneys
Due to our experience, attorneys John B. White and Stephen L. Denton and the rest of our legal team can handle a wide range of federal criminal cases, including:
- Complex fraud and financial crimes (these include “white collar crimes” such as mortgage fraud, bank fraud, securities fraud and health care fraud)
- Drug crimes (including the major drug trafficking offenses that are usually the focus of federal prosecutors and the RICO charges that often accompany them)
- Computer crimes (including computer intrusion and Internet fraud)
- Child exploitation crimes (including Internet child pornography charges)
- Firearms offenses
- Public corruption
- Immigration offenses (including employment of undocumented workers)
- Environmental crimes
- Federal wildlife law violations.
We can provide many different services in this area of the law such as:
- Seeking immunity for you if you are asked to speak with federal investigators or to testify before a grand jury
- Filing pretrial motions that could result in the evidence against you being suppressed or your case being dismissed
- Working with the U.S. Attorney’s Office in South Carolina to negotiate a fair and reasonable plea arrangement
- Vigorously defending you at trial
- Seeking to minimize the consequences if you are convicted.
It is important to take prompt action in order to protect your rights. If you have been charged with a federal crime, contact Harrison White, P.C., today.