Federal Criminal Defense Lawyer Facts: Difference of State and Federal Crimes

by Eva Braughly Freelance Writer/Blogger


Most crimes involve state courts for violations of state law. Still, just as state lawmakers make laws proscribing felonious crimes at the state position, Congress defines and penalizes acts that constitute crimes at the civil position.

State felony laws must be tied to some civil or public issue. This includes interstate trafficking in contraband, civil duty fraud, correspondence fraud, or crimes committed on civil property. Some felonious acts are crimes only under civil law. Multiple felonious acts such as hijacking or robbing the back are under civil and state law which is why they can be dealt with in either state or civil court.

Most of the crimes that come to mind such as murder, thievery, burglary, wildfire, theft, and rape are violations of state law. State lawmakers have used their general police power to regulate the conduct and the state has governance.

There are smaller classes of civil crimes because, while state lawmakers can pass just about any law (subject to review by courts for constitutionality), lawmakers can pass laws only where there's some civil or public interest at stake. 

In practice, civil interest is veritably defined. The state government has governance over the following crimes that happened on civil land or involves civil officers, which may include murder in public woods or if it’s on an Indian reservation, thievery on a military base, or assault of a Drug Enforcement or DEA agent.

A crime is turned over to the federal court and will involve a federal criminal defense lawyer. An example of this is when a person takes a hijacking victim from California to Las Vegas. A crime where the felonious act occurred across state lines is subjected to a federal case. If for instance the victims or perpetrators are in multiple countries, the case will go up to the federal court. Other crimes that are handled by the federal court include Immigration and customs violations,  importing child pornography, or human trafficking.

Differences in State and Federal Procedure

There are numerous differences between state and federal courts. Federal judges are appointed for life, whereas state court judges appointed by the governor, must sit for re-election. Federal crimes are handled by civil officers, including FBI, DEA, or ICE agents. State crimes are dealt with by county sheriffs, state agents, or police officers, and fulfilled by state attorneys or city attorneys. As a general rule, because there are far smaller state proceedings, cases in state court can take longer to resolve.

As an example, there was a case in 1992 where a jury in California state court acquitted four Los Angeles Police Department officers of beating Rodney King. Later on, federal prosecutors charged the officers with violating King's rights and two officers were convicted.

While the constitution allows federal laws, states can have their variation of the law. Case in point, New York prohibits a state conviction when the same felonious act has been fulfilled under federal law and both state and federal laws are designed to help the same types of detriment.

Punishment for State Crimes

Like state crimes, the penalties for federal crimes vary. There are some sentencing guidelines, and the vast majority of federal judges follow the guidelines when sentencing defendants. As a general rule, penalties are longer than state penalties for certain crimes. In particular, federal drug crimes carry harsh convictions. People convicted of federal crimes will face longer prison times than those state rulings. This is why a defendant hoping to have the charges dropped or receive a lighter sentence will need an experienced federal criminal defense lawyer.

Legal Representation in Court

Defendants who are facing a federal case should certainly talk with the defense attorney. A defendant charged with either a federal or state crime must make sure to work with a reliable defense lawyer. For federal charges, it's important to see an attorney with experience representing people in federal court, as the rules that apply in federal court are different from those in state court. Whenever a defendant is facing felonious charges, he or she will need a lawyer who has the ability and experience of defending those types of cases in court. Whether in state or federal court, an attorney can help you navigate the justice system and gain a better outcome in the case.

Benari Law Group has decades of hands-on experience and a multipronged approach in using proven defense methods and tactics to help defendants. Benari is dedicated to upholding the 6th amendment and providing the defendant to have the right to competent counsel. At Benari Law, excellence is our only standard. We, Benari Law Firm give personalized attention from our team. You’ll also have direct access to your attorney. To know more about Benari Law Group, Visit Our Location at (1 Veterans Sq. #200, Media, PA 19063) or Call Us at: (610) 566-1006.

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About Eva Braughly Innovator   Freelance Writer/Blogger

34 connections, 1 recommendations, 98 honor points.
Joined APSense since, February 26th, 2020, From Austin, United States.

Created on Nov 8th 2021 11:07. Viewed 511 times.


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