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What is the plea bargain process for federal crimes?

On Behalf of | Nov 11, 2021 | Drug Offenses, White Collar Crimes

Residents of Inverness and other areas of Florida may want to learn more about the plea bargaining process for federal crimes. The plea bargain has the advantage of saving time and money in court; it resolves the case without the need for a criminal trial. Defendants may get a lesser sentence or a less serious crime record while receiving more certainty in the outcome.

Federal prosecutors have less leeway in offering the plea bargain, which makes them rarer than in state-level crimes. Crimes with mandatory sentences have no room for a plea bargain. Sometimes, there are statutes in place regarding the crime that do not allow plea bargaining.

What laws govern the plea bargain?

According to the U.S. Attorney’s Manual, plea agreements should “honestly reflect the totality and seriousness of the defendant’s conduct.” Any differences must be consistent with Sentencing Guideline provisions for federal criminal law in regard to plea bargains.

The assistant attorney general must approve

The assistant attorney general must give approval if certain things occur. These include the following:

• Counts are being dismissed.
• Defendant companies are being promised no further prosecution.
• Particular sentences are being recommended.

There are some prohibitions

U.S. attorneys aren’t allowed to make plea agreements that prejudice civil or tax liability. They must have the approval of all the agencies that have involvement.

No attorney for the government may threaten or threaten to seek the death penalty solely for the purpose of getting a better negotiating position for a plea bargain. In addition, an “Alford plea” is not allowable when the defendant maintains their innocence. They may plead guilty to the charge, however.

Plea bargaining for federal crimes involves a consideration of what is not allowable by federal criminal law. You might want to understand this position when seeking the plea bargain.