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Phoenix Federal Crimes Attorney

Phoenix Federal Crimes AttorneyHave you been charged with a federal crime in Phoenix, AZ? With more than 33 years of experience defending clients against serious federal charges, you can count on Orent Law Offices for the vigorous defense you deserve. Call (480) 656-7301 to schedule a free case review with a Phoenix federal crimes attorney.

A federal offense charged by the FBI, DEA, or ATF typically comes with even harsher penalties than similar offenses at the state level. There is no time to delay in building your defense with the help of an experienced federal criminal defense lawyer in Phoenix.

How Orent Law Offices Can Help if You Are Arrested for a Federal Crime in Phoenix

Close-up. Arrested manFederal criminal cases are serious and require a different approach than a state criminal defense. You deserve an experienced Phoenix criminal defense lawyer who will give you a tenacious defense. That gives you the best chances of a satisfactory conclusion to your case.

Orent Law Offices represents Phoenix, Arizona clients who have been charged with federal offenses. Founding attorney Craig Orent is a Certified Criminal Law Specialist and Top 100 Trial Lawyer. He has over 33 years of legal experience in state and federal cases. His experience includes time with the Federal Public Defender’s Office representing clients in federal cases.

Hire Orent Law Offices to defend you and we will put our experience to work to:

  • Investigate your case for violations of your rights then seek to have evidence excluded
  • Gather exculpatory evidence that proves your innocence or raises reasonable doubt
  • Work with experts to interpret and challenge evidence against you
  • Negotiate on your behalf for a satisfactory plea deal, dismissal, or minimum penalties
  • Offer sound legal advice at every stage and give you realistic, honest advice

At Orent Law Offices, we have earned a reputation for our success at the negotiation table and inside the courtroom. Contact a Phoenix criminal defense lawyer at our law office today to schedule a free case review to discuss your defense options.

What Are the Differences Between State and Federal Charges?

Many criminal offenses can fall under both federal and state law, but some offenses are only state or federal crimes. If you are suspected of committing a criminal offense in Phoenix, you will usually be arrested by the Phoenix Police Department. If you are suspected of violating the United States Code, prosecution may instead fall to a federal law enforcement agency.

There are several federal law enforcement agencies that investigate and prosecute crimes.

The following are most commonly involved in federal offenses in Arizona:

  • The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). The FBI investigates counterfeiting, cybercrime, organized crime, public corruption, civil rights violations, and white collar crimes.
  • The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF). The ATF investigates offenses related to guns, explosives, arson, and large-scale alcohol and tobacco crimes.
  • The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). The DEA investigates crimes under the federal controlled substance law including drug trafficking.
  • The Criminal Investigation Division of Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The IRS investigates criminal violations of the Internal Revenue Code including money laundering, Bank Secrecy Act violations, and tax fraud.
  • Homeland Security Investigations (HIS) under the Department of Homeland Security. The HIS investigates transnational crime such as narcotics smuggling, child exploitation, and human trafficking, and transnational gang activity. This department may be involved in alleged crimes that cross the Arizona-Mexico border.

In some cases, a crime may be a state crime that becomes a federal offense in certain circumstances. A common example is bank robbery. Robbery is a crime under the Arizona Revised Statutes, but crimes involving banks become a federal offense.

Federal crimes are not only investigated by federal law enforcement; they are prosecuted by federal prosecutors in district courts.

Federal cases different from state cases in several important ways:

  • Federal prosecutors have a lower caseload than state prosecutors with better resources. They are less likely to accept plea bargains.
  • Federal judges have less discretion.
  • There are different bail types and conditions in a federal criminal case.
  • Jurors will be selected from across the district and are typically more diverse.
  • Federal sentencing guidelines usually have higher penalties with minimum sentencing requirements.

A Phoenix defense lawyer must be authorized to represent you in a particular district court. This means not all Arizona criminal defense lawyers can defend you against a federal criminal offense. Orent Law Offices has decades of experience defending clients in federal district courts.

We Defend Phoenix Clients Against All Types of Federal Criminal Charges

While any criminal offense that violates federal law can be prosecuted as a federal offense, most are not. The federal government generally steps in and prosecutes specific types of offenses. The following are the most common types of federal cases we handle at Orent Law Offices.

Federal Sex Crimes

Most sex crimes such as rape are prosecuted in state courts. Some sex offenses are investigated and prosecuted by federal law enforcement. Specifically, the FBI and HIS within the DHS investigate human trafficking, child sex tourism, and child pornography, and internet sex crimes.

Federal Drug Crimes

Drug crimes are among the most serious federal offenses. Federal law enforcement may work with state law enforcement to investigate and prosecute a range of drug offenses.

As a general rule, the DEA usually pursues federal criminal charges in drug offenses that involve:

  • Controlled substances sold in a school zone or to minors
  • Drug offenses involving a federal agent
  • Drug crimes on federal property
  • Drug offenses that cross borders or involve the internet or postal service
  • Drug offenses involving organized crime

Federal drug charges carry notoriously harsh penalties with mandatory minimum sentences.

Federal Weapons Charges

The ATF typically handles the investigation and prosecution of federal weapons offenses. These offenses may include possession by a prohibited person, possession of a gun in the commission of a federal offense, firearms trafficking, or offenses involving interstate gun transfers.

Federal White Collar Crimes

White collar crime is sometimes considered “victimless” crime, but this is not true. Despite the non-violent nature of these offenses, the FBI estimates that white collar crime costs the U.S. over $300 billion per year. This means these offenses are often prosecuted aggressively to make an example out of defendants.

Common federal white collar offenses include mail and wire fraud, racketeering, embezzlement, and insurance fraud.

What Are the Penalties for a Federal Offense?

A federal criminal case typically carries higher penalties and fines than similar state criminal cases. Federal sentencing uses the U.S. Sentencing Commission’s Voluntary Sentencing Guidelines which uses a point system. There are typically mandatory minimum sentences and longer maximum terms.

You can expect higher stakes in a federal criminal case because:

  • Federal judges must follow strict federal sentencing guidelines with less sentencing discretion
  • Federal prosecutors have limited discretion to negotiate for a reduced sentence or plea bargain
  • Federal crimes often carry sentencing enhancements
  • Minimum and maximum penalties for federal offenses are higher

Similar to Arizona criminal law, the federal criminal code has two classifications of offenses: misdemeanors and felonies.

There are three categories of federal misdemeanors punishable by up to 12 months in prison. By comparison, the highest class of misdemeanor in Arizona is only punishable by up to 6 months in jail.

If you are charged with a federal felony, you face anywhere from 1 to 5 years with a Class E federal felony to up to life in prison with a Class A federal felony. By comparison, the lowest felony class in Arizona is punishable by up to 18 months in prison with a presumptive sentence of one year. This presumptive sentence is the minimum you would face for a comparable federal felony.

How Can I Defend Against Federal Criminal Charges in Phoenix?

The stakes are high when you’re facing criminal charges in federal court. So, it will be important to exhaust every possible avenue for your legal defense. At Orent Law Offices, we will carefully analyze your federal criminal case from all possible angles – searching for every potential defense that can be raised on your behalf.

This might include:

  • Challenging the validity or strength of the government’s evidence
  • Undermining the credibility of witnesses offering testimony against you
  • Identifying potential violations of your civil rights
  • Offering exculpatory evidence to cast doubt on your guilt so that the prosecution cannot satisfy its burden of proof

Our criminal defense attorneys in Phoenix, Arizona are ready to fight for you. We will argue any defense that might benefit you and help you secure the best outcome in your criminal case.

Schedule a Free Case Review with Our Phoenix Federal Crimes Attorney

When you are facing a federal criminal offense, there is a lot on the line. You are facing not only a lengthy prison term and extremely high fines but imprisonment in a federal prison far from home. You deserve the best possible legal counsel when you are facing the full force of the federal government.

Orent Law Offices has more than 33 years of experience representing clients in federal and state courts. Contact our law firm today for a free consultation with a Phoenix federal crimes attorney who will fight for you.