There are two types of criminal charges that you may face: state and federal charges. The vast majority of defendants face state charges, but it is still important to learn about federal charges in case you ever find yourself facing these serious accusations. Here’s an overview of the differences between state and federal charges:
Defendants who are accused of violating state laws will face state charges. However, defendants who commit crimes on federal property, cross state lines while committing a crime, or commit a federal crime will face federal charges. In some cases, the crime that you are being accused of is both a state and federal crime. State and federal prosecutors decide on a case-by-case basis how and where to prosecute these crimes that violate both state and federal law.
Federal prosecutors will be responsible for handling cases involving federal charges, whereas state prosecutors take on cases involving state charges. Both state and federal prosecutors are skilled legal professionals that have a deep understanding of the law. However, federal prosecutors typically have fewer open cases than state prosecutors. This means that a federal prosecutor has more time to gather evidence and build a case against you, which could result in a stronger case.
Federal investigations are much more thorough than state investigations. Why? Crimes that occur at the state level are investigated by county and city police departments, whereas crimes at the federal level are investigated by federal agencies. The FBI, IRS, SEC, and DEA may be involved with a federal investigation, and they have far more resources at their disposal than state investigators. Federal agencies will leave no stone unturned when investigating a crime, so your attorney must be prepared to face a tough trial.
The penalties that you may face will vary depending on the nature of the crime. But in general, the penalties for being convicted of a federal crime are much more serious than penalties for being convicted of a state crime. Defendants who are convicted of a federal crime are typically given longer sentences, which will be served in a federal prison as opposed to a state prison.
If you are facing state or federal charges, contact Reisch Law Firm today. Our experienced team of criminal defense attorneys will fight tirelessly to reach the best possible outcome in your case. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 303-291-0555 or filling out this online form.