Federal Crimes Trial Process

Pursuant to the fifth and sixth amendments to the U.S. Constitution, any person charged with a crime has: the right to a speedy and public trial by a jury selected from the community; the right to have the trial take place in the community wherein the offense occurred; the right to have the government prove all elements of the crime beyond a reasonable doubt; the right to subpoena persons at no cost to testify on your behalf and the right to present evidence on your behalf (or no evidence if you so choose); the right to confront and cross examine witnesses against you, and the right to remain silent (or to testify if you so choose). Because the government has the burden of proof, they go first, and present their evidence in the form of witnesses, documents and other physical objects.

After the prosecutor questions the witnesses (known as direct examination), your federal crime attorney will have the right to question the witnesses (known as cross examination). After the prosecution has presented all its evidence, it will rest. At that point, your federal crime attorney has the right to ask the judge to find that no reasonable jury could convict on the evidence presented by the government. If he or she agrees, he or she will enter a judgment of acquittal. If the judge disagrees, you then have the right to present evidence (or to decline to do so).

Once the defense rests, the government has the right to present a rebuttal to your evidence (if there was any). Once the government rests its rebuttal case, the federal crime attorneys can present their closing arguments. The government goes first, then the defense; the government once again gets a chance to rebut the defense argument. The court will then instruct the jury on the law that applies to the case, and they will retire to deliberate their case in secret. They will either return a verdict of guilty (on some or all charges) or not guilty (on some or all charges). If you are convicted on any charges, the net phase will be sentencing. If you are acquitted on all charges, you are free to go.

Click For More Information On Federal Crimes

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *