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What are Conditions for Pre-Trial Release?

Why have thousands of clients chosen Oberheiden P.C.?

  1. Only Sr. Attorneys– We don’t employ paralegals, Jr. Attorneys, or Secretaries. You will work directly with a Sr. Attorney who will keep you apprised on a regular basis regarding the details of your case.
  2. We Know The Government’s Playbook– Many of our attorneys previously worked for the government as federal prosecutors. Understanding the tricks, goals, and strategies of the opposing side gives us an advantage as we prepare our defense.
  3. We Have Secret Weapons– Our team of Former FBI, IRS, DEA, OIG, and Secret Service agents will use their decades of experience in espionage, business investigations, and cyber forensics to find the nuanced details that can sometimes be the difference between a win or jail time.
  4. Unrivaled Results– While we have many tools at our disposal, our greatest asset is our decades of experience fighting the government. This experience has given us the privilege of winning over 2,000 cases on behalf of our clients.

I encourage you to compare our experience, results, and team with any local or national firm.

When you’ve been defending clients for as long as we have, there’s no trick we haven’t seen, no tactics we haven’t countered and no strategy we haven’t circumvented many times before.

If your reputation, livelihood, freedom, or career is at stake, call us today for a free consultation.

We will help you clearly understand what your options are and the best path forward.

Call now to confidentially discuss the details of your case: 888-680-1745

Dr. Nick Oberheiden

A federal magistrate judge decides at the initial appearance hearing whether a person accused of a federal crime will be in custody or may leave on bond. Because a detention order at the initial appearance hearing could well mean that an accused will remain in custody for the remainder of the case (and appear handcuffed at future hearings), it is critical to hire experienced criminal defense counsel the moment you become aware of a potential criminal investigation.

Appearance Before Magistrate Judge

The initial appearance is typically conducted by a U.S. magistrate judge who informs the person accused of a crime about the nature and the scope of the charges against him or her. Pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 3142, the magistrate judge will then look at the circumstances of the case and review the accused’s background to decide whether the defendant can be released on conditions pending the case.

Who Must Appear at the Hearing?

Two scenarios lead to an initial appearance in the federal criminal justice system.

Scenario 1: Arrest

In scenario 1, an individual has been arrested by federal law enforcement officers, such as FBI agents, DEA agents, ICE agents, or agents of the Office of Inspector General. This arrest often occurs also with the help of state law enforcement agencies, in particular the local police. The agents take the accused to the initial hearing to present him to a judge.

Scenario 2: Target Letter

In scenario 2, the accused will learn that an investigation is pending against him by a so-called target letter, in which a federal prosecutor informs an individual that he or she is accused of having committed a federal crime. The letter includes contact information or a grand jury invitation to appear for testimony. In this scenario, the accused will have time to consult with attorneys and almost always have a chance to voluntarily appear with his lawyer of choice at the initial hearing.

The Role of Lawyers

The role of an experienced criminal defense lawyer at this initial appearance is to convince the judge that the accused presents no danger to society, has no plans to flee his residential district or the country, will comply with all registration and reporting requirements— and consequently deserves to remain free.

The former federal prosecutors and experienced criminal defense attorneys at the Oberheiden, P.C. offer free and confidential consultations to explore with you how pre-trial detention can be avoided in your case.

Contact Oberheiden, P.C. online today.

Factors the Court Considers for Pre-Trial Release

Detention and release of defendants during criminal investigations is controlled by the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, the Excessive Bail Clause of the Eight Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, and the Bail Reform Act of 1984.

Pursuant to 18 U.S.C. § 3142 and 18 U.S.C § 3141, the court must take several factors into consideration in order to determine someone’s pretrial custody status. Among these factors are:

  • the nature of the offense
  • the person’s prior arrests and convictions
  • the person’s probation or parole status
  • the danger to other people or the community
  • the person’s financial resources to flee
  • the person’s foreign ties
  • the likelihood of future offenses pending the continuation of the case
  • the likelihood to destroy or hide evidence
  • the person’s citizenship
  • the person’s lawful or unlawful residence in the United States
  • the person’s age
  • the person’s medical conditions

Conditional Release (Bond)

If conditional release is granted, the magistrate judge will typically impose several restrictions to ensure that the accused, although not in custody, can be monitored by a U.S. probation officer.

Additionally, pre-trial release typically means that the individual will have to surrender all passports, foreign and domestic, will have to cooperate and visit regularly with a U.S. probation officer assigned to his case, and will have to refrain from communicating in any form or fashion with victims and co-defendants in the case, or people that are known to be criminals. Additionally, the individual is expected to pass random drug and alcohol tests, to provide proof of employment, and to provide all documents relating to his mental and physical condition.

Violations of Conditions

If the accused is released on conditions, he will be able to leave the courthouse and remain a free citizen pending further orders. Violations of the conditions for release, pleading guilty at the re-arraignment, being found guilty at trial, and a judgment of incarceration at a sentencing hearing may all alter the court’s release order. Pretrial release orders will inform the defendant that any violation of state or federal law during the case resolution will result in a hearing and likely in detention.

Pretrial Detention

Offenses against children, offenses that involve violence, offenses that involve the possession or use of a firearm or similar destructive device or dangerous weapon, crimes with a maximum term of imprisonment of ten years or more, or offenses for which the maximum sentence is life imprisonment or death, and serious violations of the Controlled Substances Act or the Controlled Substances Import or Export Act are most likely to result in pretrial detention.

Why Clients Trust Oberheiden P.C.

  • 1,000+ Cases Handled
  • Available Nights & Weekends
  • Experienced Trial Attorneys
  • Former Department of Justice Trial Attorneys
  • Former Federal Prosecutors, U.S. Attorney’s Office
  • Former Agents from FBI, OIG, DEA
  • Cases Handled in 48 States
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