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A Law Firm Fighting Federal Criminal Charges In Hawai‘i

Federal crimes are often seen as more intimidating and serious than state-level charges – and for good reason. The federal criminal justice system is challenging, and slight missteps can result in extremely harsh outcomes. For this reason, many criminal defense lawyers focus only on state charges. If you’re facing a federal offense, you need a Hawai‘i federal defense attorney who knows the federal system inside and out.

You can find the legal representation you need at Harrison Law Center, A Law Corporation. Utilizing more than 40 years of legal experience, I defend clients from around the world facing federal charges in Hawai‘i. Whether you live anywhere on the Islands or you were arrested and charged with a federal offense while visiting Hawai‘i, I am ready to protect you against the powers of the federal government and fight for your freedom.

A Strong Defense Against Nearly Any Federal Charges

I regularly go up against federal prosecutors when defending my clients accused of serious criminal charges. I am experienced in and knowledgeable about federal court procedures, like those in the U.S. District Court of Hawai‘i. I’m ready to help you fight back against allegations related to:

Additionally, I represent military servicemembers facing federal crimes or court-martial.

Convictions for many federal offenses trigger mandatory minimums – that is, a mandatory prison sentence without parole. I understand the intricacies of federal sentencing guidelines and rules and can strategize effective avenues for avoiding such harsh consequences.

What Makes A Crime Federal?

Criminal charges are typically classified as either state or federal. Sometimes, the jurisdiction is clear, while other times, it is up to prosecutors to decide whether the state or federal government should prosecute.

There are numerous factors that determine federal charges. First, a crime can be charged as a federal offense if it breaks a law passed by the U.S. Congress. Second, if a crime happens on federal property or involves federal officers, it’s likely to be a federal case. Also, if the criminal activity crosses state lines, like trafficking or large-scale fraud, federal authorities might step in. Finally, if the case is of national interest, such as terrorism or significant drug offenses, federal involvement is likely.

What To Do If You Are Contacted By A Federal Agency About A Crime

One of the many factors that make federal charges scary is that the federal government has broad investigative powers through agencies like the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Federal agencies are not always obligated to inform someone that they are under investigation. If you do get contacted, whether about your own alleged activities or those of someone you associate with, you should consider it a fortunate early warning. First, it’s important to stay calm and know your rights. Remember, you have the right to remain silent – you don’t have to answer any questions if you haven’t been placed under arrest. Even then, you are allowed to have a lawyer present.

You should politely decline to speak until you’ve consulted with your attorney. Then, contact a federal defense attorney. It is safest to assume that the investigation will eventually result in criminal charges and begin to prepare your defense as soon as possible. Contacting a lawyer during the investigation stage can impact everything from the charges filed to potential plea bargains and defense options.

Understanding The Federal Criminal Process

If you’ve been charged with a federal crime in Hawai‘i, you will naturally be feeling overwhelmed. Here’s a brief overview of what to expect in the days and weeks to come.

First, you’ll likely go through an arrest and then an initial appearance in court. During this appearance, the charges against you will be read, and your rights will be explained. As mentioned above, you should already have an attorney working on your defense, if at all possible.

Next, there may be a detention hearing to determine if you should be released before the trial. The court will consider factors like your ties to the community and the nature of the charges to decide this. This is one area in which it pays to work with a lawyer who is seen as levelheaded and professional rather than “aggressive.” The right attorney can be very effective in securing pre-trial release and obtaining a fair bail amount.

After that, the discovery phase begins. This is where your defense team and the prosecutors share evidence and information. It’s a critical step where your attorney will work diligently to build your defense.

Then, you might have a plea bargain opportunity. This is where you could agree to plead guilty to lesser charges in exchange for a lighter sentence and/or a less damaging criminal record. However, if you choose to go to trial, you’ll face a jury of your peers who will decide your fate based on the evidence presented by both sides.

Whether you choose to take a negotiated plea deal or fight the charges in court, my firm is prepared to help you seek the most favorable outcome available in your case.

Tell Me Your Side Of The Story During A Free Consultation

If you’re facing federal charges, it’s imperative to enlist a trusted Oahu federal crime attorney as soon as possible. Call 808-501-0408 or send me an email to discuss your case during a free consultation. My office is conveniently located in downtown Honolulu, less than a mile from the federal courthouse.