Being accused of a criminal charge can be one the most stressful times in your life. Your freedom and reputation may be at stake. If you or a loved one are facing criminal charges, it is essential that you get advice from one of our tough, experienced criminal defense lawyers. We know how to navigate the criminal justice system and achieve successful results for our clients.
Florida criminal defense attorneys have experience dealing with criminal law issues, and will be candid with you about all of your options.
Types of Offenses
People may think they have no need to be concerned about criminal law, but it is all too easy to stumble just once and face charges such as:
- Financial offenses: tax evasion, fraud, forgery, embezzlement.
- Alcohol-related offenses: driving under the influence, giving alcohol to minors, open container violations, disorderly conduct, disorderly intoxication.
- Traffic-related offenses: driving with a suspended or revoked license, driving with a suspended license, reckless driving, racing, leaving the scene of an accident, hit and run distracted driving.
- Drug charges: possession, manufacturing, trafficking, cultivation, delivery, distribution.
- Sex-related offenses: sex with a minor, obscenity, solicitation for prostitution.
- Property crimes: shoplifting, trespassing, grand theft, petit theft, burglary.
Criminal sentences have gotten tougher than they used to be. Not long ago, federal and state authorities were grappling with rapidly increasing crime rates, and they responded by lengthening the amount of jail time someone can get for what were previously minor offenses.
Mandatory Minimum Sentences
Congress and many state legislatures add “mandatory minimum” sentences to the law, so that judges have less discretion to be lenient to a first offender or someone who can show mitigating circumstances. This is particularly true with respect to offenses related to drug possession and distribution.
Fortunately, criminal defendants have certain specific rights that the courts must respect. You are presumed innocent. The burden of proof is on the prosecution, and they must prove their case “beyond a reasonable doubt.” It is critical to have one of aggressive Florida defense attorneys your corner, fighting for your rights.
Building a Defense
A key question in any criminal case is whether the evidence that the authorities have is admissible in court or strong enough to prove the allegations against you. Any search of a person’s home must be carried in compliance with constitutional rules.
The Fourth Amendment mandates that searches must be done in accordance with a warrant that “particularly describes the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.” Florida defense attorneys will challenge any evidence that the government tries to use against you, requiring them to explain how that evidence was obtained and how it is relevant to the charges against you.
The government must prove criminal intent – that you knowingly violated the law – or that you demonstrated “criminal negligence,” a level of recklessness higher than the one required in a civil lawsuit.
Working With a Criminal Defense Attorney
Florida defense attorneys will listen to your story without judgment. We have seen it all, and know that anyone can make a mistake.
The important thing is that you receive the protections you are entitled to under the Constitution and the rules of evidence. But time is of the essence. If you are facing possible criminal charges, contact one of our experienced Florida defense attorneys as soon as possible.