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St. Louis Criminal Defense Law Blog

Understand these points about a federal appeal

Some people who face criminal charges in federal court will end up needing to file an appeal of a conviction or sentence. The process for doing this is a very strict one that you need to be familiar with if you are planning to launch an appeal. There are several points that you need to know before you embark on the process.

The appeals process is one that is slow. This isn't a rapid way to get a federal conviction taken off your record. You should expect to have the process last months, but you also shouldn't be surprised if it lasts a year or longer. This is partly because of the steps necessary in the appeal, but also because the federal court system is so bogged down with cases.

Defending white collar crimes requires a comprehensive plan

White collar crimes are difficult to defend against due to the sheer depth of the paper trail that is present in many of these cases. The men and women who are facing them need to pay close attention to the case against them so that they can formulate a comprehensive plan to fight against the charges. That's where we come in. We are here to help you learn your options for battling against charges for fraud, embezzlement and other white collar criminal charges.

One thing to remember is that this type of charge usually comes after a lengthy investigation. This is especially true when the charges are federal. Dealing with a federal investigation is something that is going to clue you into the fact that you might be facing trouble.

Factors that can impact Breathalyzer accuracy

If a police officer pulls you over and has reason to believe you are intoxicated, he or she will probably try to determine your level of impairment by administering a breath test. A Breathalyzer is the device used to determine your degree of intoxication, and you may want to think twice before automatically agreeing to take part in the breath test.

If, however, you already took a breath test, and it showed that your blood alcohol content exceeded the legal limit, you will likely face a driving while intoxicated charge, and if convicted, ensuing penalties. Because the penalties associated with drinking and driving are so severe, you want to have the utmost confidence that the results of your breath test were accurate. Regrettably, however, this is not always the case, and there are factors that can lead a Breathalyzer to produce false results. Such factors include:

Money laundering must be taken very seriously

Most people say that the only sure things in life are paying taxes and dying. There is one more that some people can add to the list of things that they will have to do if they want to live -- make money. You need to earn a living, but some people aren't doing this in a fully legal manner. These individuals might need to make it appear as though their money was legally obtained. Money laundering is the way that they might do this.

Money laundering is simply funneling illegally obtained money through legal channels to make it appear as though it was garnered by legal methods. Even though this sounds good in theory, it is actually illegal.

Firearm charges are very serious matters for anyone

Firearms are something that have been a sort of hot-button issue since the last presidential election. The fact that it is possible to face firearm charges is something that many people just don't think is constitutional. If you are facing firearm charges, you need to learn about what options you have because your entire future likely relies on the outcome of the case.

Weapons offenses are all serious matters. When a firearm is a factor in a criminal case, there is an increased level of urgency that the prosecution might place on the need to convict the person. This puts the defendant at a disadvantage simply because so many people have a negative prejudice against gun owners.

When your infatuation is perceived as stalking

Stalking is a serious criminal matter that must be addressed promptly when you find out that you have been accused of it. There are several points that you need to know when it comes to this charge. Knowing these might help you avoid a charge or fight one that is pending against you.

First, this is a fairly new charge that doesn't have a lot of precedent to fall back on. This makes it a challenge to come up with a defense plan because you can't look at what has worked in the past. Instead, you have to rely on your attorney's experience.

Take violent crime charges seriously, your life depends on it

Violent criminal acts, such as murder, could mean that you are losing your life if you are convicted. When you think about some of the penalties that come with these convictions, you can easily see why you need to take the charges seriously. You need to get started on your defense right away. Your freedom and possibly your life depend on this.

One of the sentences that is often associated with violent crime convictions is time in prison. Whether you are sentenced to serve a decade or the rest of your natural life, you will find that the world doesn't stop. If you have a chance of getting out of prison, life on the outside is going to be much different when you leave prison than when you went in.

What happens if you refuse a sobriety test?

You may have heard that you are protecting your legal rights if you refuse to take a sobriety test when you are pulled over. However, it is important for you and other Missouri residents to understand that refusing a test does not come without consequences, and may not prevent a law enforcement officer from arresting you.

You might think that only people who are actually intoxicated receive drunk driving convictions. Unfortunately, this is not always true. An officer may arrest you based on his or her personal judgment that you were drinking, which may not have been the case. Here, we will discuss what might happen if you refuse to submit to a sobriety test.

Know what you are waiving as part of a plea bargain

A plea bargain is a good way for some defendants to get a criminal case taken care of. As part of the plea bargain, you are given some measure of control over the outcome of the case. You agree that you will plead guilty or no contest to criminal charges in exchange for a specific sentence or less serious charge.

Before you decide that you are going to accept a plea bargain, you need to look carefully at the conditions that come with this arrangement. There are some that might be deal breakers for you, so make sure you take the time to fully understand the terms of the deal.

Criminal appeals can sometimes come after a conviction

Criminal cases are some that don't come with any guarantees. There are some instances in which you might take your case to trial and it doesn't turn out anything like you expected it to. While this is certainly upsetting, there are some instances in which it might be necessary to file a criminal appeal. We can review the circumstances of your case to help you determine what options you have.

You can't appeal a criminal conviction just because you don't agree with it. Instead, there are four specific grounds for appeals that can be the basis for appeals. Unless one of these is present, your case isn't likely going to go anywhere. These include:

  • Claiming ineffective counsel based on the Sixth Amendment
  • The evidence doesn't support the verdict
  • The lower court made a plain, or serious, error
  • The lower court made an errant ruling due to abuse of discretion
    • Richard H.Sindel | Best Lawyers In America | Best Lawyers - 2016
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    • Richard H. Sindel | Best Lawyers | Lawyer of the year | 2011 | Criminal Defense: Non-White-Collar St.Louis
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    • Bar Register Preeminent Lawyers
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