Appeals

Often times, the Federal Criminal Defendant that has suffered an adverse ruling in the case or has been convicted after trial or guilty plea feels that there is no recourse. That is simply not true.

The Federal Criminal Appeal is the first step in trying to obtain relief for the criminal defendant. As a matter of law, a conviction, until affirmed on direct appeal, is not final and there exists a wide range of remedies. The defendant may challenge a sentence or a conviction and several other issues which are examined on a case by case basis. We examine many potential issues on a case by case basis for the individual client designed to give the client the greatest likelihood of success.

The Federal Appeal Attorney that handles your case must be experienced and successful. At my Law Firm, we can file your Federal Appeal in any Circuit Court of Appeals in the 50 states that has jurisdiction over your federal criminal case. The Federal Appeal Lawyer must be creative and persistent and at my Law Firm, we can travel anywhere in the country to argue your appeal.

The Federal Appeal is a complex and intricate process which is why we can travel nationwide to prosecute appeals for our clients. In addition to federal appeals, the Law Firm is well versed in New York Criminal Appeals and New York Civil Appeals. Although each appeal is individualized for the client, some issues that can be raised on appeal include:

  • CROSS – EXAM: This is one of the most effective tools at the disposal of the criminal defense lawyer. A denial of the defendant’s right to challenge the veracity of witness statements implicates constitutional concerns.
  • CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS: The federal appeal lawyer should vigorously search the record on appeal towards constructing any violations of the client’s constitutional rights which include the right to confront witnesses and effective assistance of counsel.
  • DOUBLE JEAPORDY: The United States Constitution forbids more than one prosecution for the same offense. A violation of the Double Jeopardy Clause is appealable.
  • DETENTION PENDING APPEAL: A criminal defendant may petition the district court for bond pending appeal. The decision may be reviewed by the court of appeals.
  • EYEWITNESS IDENTIFICATIONS: The criminal defendant that is denied the opportunity to present an expert witness challenging the reliability of an eyewitness can be challenged on appeal.
  • ELECTRONIC SURVEILANCE: The admissibility of electronic surveillance evidence against a criminal defendant is appealable if an abuse of discretion by the District Judge is established.
  • FORFEITURE: The United States Government has become increasingly aggressive in seeking forfeiture of assets in the criminal prosecution. As such, forfeiture issues are increasingly subject to appeal and should be contested vigorously.
  • GUILTY PLEA: The guilty plea must satisfy Federal Rule Criminal Procedure 11 and a plea that does not satisfy the requirements may be attacked on appeal.
  • 28 U.S.C. sec. 2255 & HABEAS CORPUS: The criminal defendant may wish to collaterally attack the conviction or sentence. This affords the petitioner a judicial determination of the legality of conviction and sentence.
  • INDICTMENT: The criminal indictment may be challenged on appeal for a variety of reasons stemming from the district court’s ruling.
  • IMMUNITY AGREEMENTS: An appeal may be taken if the government fails to adhere to the promises it made in an immunity agreement.
  • INSANITY / COMPETENCE: The failure on the district court to order a competency hearing to determine condition of defendant is reviewable by the appeals court.
  • INEFFECTIVE ASSISTANCE OF COUNSEL: The deficient work of counsel may be appealed and relief will be granted if the following is established (1) an attorney’s performance fell below an objective standard of reasonableness; and (2) the deficient performance prejudiced the defense.
  • JURY APPEALS: The Court of Appeals has wide latitude to review matters of the jury and this is an area that is ripe for appellate issues.
  • JURISDICTION: The court must have the authority to preside over the case it hears. As such, any jurisdictional defect may be raised on appeal.
  • JURY INSTRUCTIONS: This is the domain of the experienced attorney as appellate issues often need to be preserved for appeal. An experienced federal appellate attorney must craft an argument showing the refusal to present a proposed instruction to the jury has prejudiced the defense.
  • GOVERNMENT MISCONDUCT: Depending on the severity of the misconduct this is an issue that should never be ignored.
  • MOTION FOR NEW TRIAL: Zealous federal appellate counsel should review the record in its entirety to see if prior counsel made a motion for a new trial. This motion is often the gatekeeper in deciding what issues to raise on appeal.
  • PLEA AGREEMENT: The plea agreement is a contract between the government and the defendant. Many considerations arise under plea agreements including whether the District Judge rejects the plea agreement, whether it is enforceable, and interpretation of the terms contained therein.

The above appellate list is only a partial representation of viable issues. Call me today for a private and confidential consultation regarding your Appeal.

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