Orange County Criminal Trial / Litigation
Proven Orange County Criminal Trial / Litigation Attorneys
If you have been arrested on federal charges in the Orange County area or if you have received a letter from any federal agency, you should begin preparing yourself for the possibility of going to trial.
The Orange County criminal trial / litigation attorneys at Oberheiden, P.C., have a robust track record in federal criminal litigation. We are available to represent individuals and businesses throughout Orange County.
As you might expect, a federal criminal trial is an extremely serious matter. Virtually every federal criminal charge carries an extremely severe penalty: years or decades in prison, fines that can reach millions of dollars, and more. Some federal crimes carry the potential for a life sentence (including certain drug trafficking, sex abuse, and fraud matters). Just as troubling, in the federal criminal justice system, there is no such thing as parole.
By the time you are facing a potential trial, you have no choice but to devote all of your efforts to protecting your future. It is the most important thing you will ever do, and the rest of your future depends on it.
Oberheiden, P.C., is a team of highly experienced Orange County criminal trial / litigation attorneys and former federal prosecutors who defend the criminally accused in trials and litigation throughout Orange County and nationwide. We are available to represent clients in the:
- United States District Court for the Southern District of California
- United States District Court for the Central District of California
- United States District Court for the Eastern District of California
- United States District Court for the Northern District of California
Of course, in talking about the prospect of trial, it must be noted that truly effective criminal defense often requires advocacy on multiple fronts at the same time. For example, even while our Orange County criminal trial / litigation lawyers are preparing a case for trial, we are also exploring every opportunity to avoid a trial at the same time.
In many cases, charges have been dropped before the trial begins. (In fact, we have even gotten charges dismissed after a federal indictment was issued.) We do this by persuading the prosecutors that we will not settle and they will not win. In other cases, we have been able to negotiate a favorable plea deal – though we prefer to seek a dismissal of charges whenever possible. While we cannot guarantee specific results, all of our efforts are geared toward seeking the optimal outcome for our clients
Aggressive and Strategic Orange County Criminal Trial / Litigation Attorneys
The relationship between attorney and client is so important to the outcome of a case. We need the right facts and information from you, and we get that through thorough research and by asking you the right questions. At the same time, you need to know that your attorneys are keeping you well informed. We never leave our clients in the dark. Our approach to Orange County criminal trial litigation is this: be aggressive, be passionate, be a partner with the people we represent, and never give in. This relationship of trust and confidence begins the moment we take the case.
6 Major Steps of Federal Criminal Litigation
Most criminal cases begin long before an indictment. First, there are investigations, search warrants, administrative subpoenas, and so on. Much of our criminal defense work is focused on intervening during an investigation and before an indictment – with the goal of stopping the investigation before it ever reaches this first stage. But if you are already facing imminent charges, the indictment is a good place to begin our discussion. What is an indictment? Simply defined, it is the formal accusation by which the government issues criminal charges. If you have been indicted, this means that the U.S. Attorney’s Office has already presented its evidence to a grand jury (usually in secret), and the grand jury has determined that there is “probable cause” to believe you are guilty of a crime. Most federal indictments accuse the defendant of multiple crimes at once. So if you have been indicted by a federal grand jury, you are probably facing multiple charges.
2. Investigation by Your Attorneys
If you are engaging legal counsel after an indictment in Orange County, your attorneys’ first task will be to conduct their own investigation. Your defense team will need to find the answers to questions like:
- Why was the government investigating you in the first place?
- What evidence did the government find to trigger their investigation or charges?
- What information did you provide to the government?
- How did the government get its evidence? How did it ask you for information?
- Were appropriate procedures followed before, during, and after the issuance of any warrants or subpoenas?
- Is the government targeting anyone else in your case?
We move quickly once we’re on a case. Usually, our Orange County criminal trial / litigation lawyers are able to get the answers to these questions within a short period of time. Each of these questions is extremely important. And depending on the answers, we’ll begin to develop a pretrial strategy.
3. Pretrial Strategy
Many people assume that, because they’ve been arrested or indicted, a courtroom trial is inevitable. But that isn’t necessarily true. There is a lengthy pretrial process, and many criminal matters have been resolved during this process and never go to trial. In fact, it is during this process that we have been able to get our clients’ charges dropped or substantially reduced. At this stage, we identify the most favorable resolutions available and we put together a thought-out strategy for obtaining them. Our highly skilled Orange County criminal trial / litigation attorneys do this by challenging the government’s investigative procedures, poking holes in the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s case, and raising various legal and/or factual arguments that cast reasonable doubt on your guilt.
4. Negotiations with the U.S. Attorney’s Office
Negotiation is a key part of the pretrial process. You might be surprised to learn that federal criminal litigation is frequently resolved through negotiation with the Assistant United States Attorneys outside of court. From negotiating pretrial release to negotiating for reduced charges or reduced sentencing (or having your charges dropped entirely), we understand how to communicate effectively with federal prosecutors. We’ve cultivated that understanding through our decades of experience in high-stakes federal cases, dealing directly with investigative agencies like the OIG or FBI, the DOJ, and the U.S. Attorneys’ Offices.
5. Pretrial Litigation Practice
While negotiations are ongoing, your defense lawyers will still need to tend to the formal, court-sanctioned pretrial process. This includes attending pretrial hearings, filing motions, responding to motions, and a variety of other formal legal procedures. In other words, the pretrial process moves forward on at least two tracks at the same time: the trial track and the negotiation track. Either of these tracks can result in having charges dropped. We explained how that can happen through negotiation in the previous step. But it can also happen through formal legal procedures. For example, if we can exclude critical evidence from the trial before it begins, our Orange County criminal trial / litigation attorneys may gain sufficient leverage to reduce the charges or bring the case to an end.
Finally, if your case is still pending as your court date approaches, your defense team will need to be prepared to aggressively represent you at trial. This will involve cross-examining the government’s witnesses, calling the government’s evidence into question, and presenting various defenses to the judge or jury before waiting for a verdict.
However, even as your case is going to trial, it is still possible that we could reach a plea deal on your behalf or that new evidence could come to light, warranting a dismissal of charges prior to verdict. In other words, there is an opportunity to avoid the case being sent to a jury up until the very end. And even if you are found guilty, our Orange County criminal trial / litigation lawyers will still have the opportunity to protect your interests at sentencing and you will have the opportunity to challenge the outcome of your trial on appeal.
Federal Criminal Cases We Handle
If you are in Orange County, California, and facing any of the following allegations, please contact us for a free and confidential assessment, right away.
- Health care fraud
- Federal drug crimes
- Tax crimes
- Bank fraud
- Securities fraud
- Public corruption and bribery
- Any other white-collar federal offense
Unlike some criminal defense firms, when it comes to federal criminal litigation, we do not use paralegals or junior attorneys. These cases are too important. Your future and your freedom are too important.
Instead, you will work closely with our senior attorneys throughout the duration of your case. Every attorney working on your case will have extensive experience in federal criminal court. Our senior attorneys are available to represent you and meet with you in Orange County as needed.
Potential Defenses to Federal Criminal Charges
Deciding on the best defense strategy in any particular case requires a detailed understanding of the unique facts and circumstances involved. While every situation is different, some of the most effective federal criminal trial defense strategies include:
- Disputing the Government’s Evidence – Is the government’s evidence admissible in court? Does it fall into a category of inadmissible evidence, such as hearsay or “fruit of the poisonous tree”? Does it really prove what the U.S. Attorney’s Office contends it proves? Because the government must prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, challenging the evidence is a key defense strategy and is frequently effective. So often, the link between the government’s evidence and its conclusion requires a leap that falls within the shadow of reasonable doubt.
- Asserting Constitutional Violations – Were you stopped without reasonable suspicion? Were you arrested without probable cause? Were you read your Miranda rights too late (or not at all)? These and other Constitutional violations happen more often than you might think. They might have happened in your case already without you even realizing it. If so, our aggressive Orange County criminal trial / litigation attorneys will begin working immediately to cast a light on the violations, which can have a direct impact on the outcome of a criminal trial.
- Asserting Affirmative Defenses – In addition to challenging the government’s evidence, in many cases, it is possible to raise an “affirmative defense” as well. In an affirmative defense, instead of disputing the prosecution’s purported facts, we demonstrate that those facts (even if true) do not constitute the crime as charged.
- Challenging the Sufficiency of the Government’s Case – Even if the government’s evidence is admissible and reliable, is it enough to prove that you are guilty of the crime(s) alleged? All federal crimes are made up of multiple “elements,” and the U.S. Attorney’s Office must prove each of these elements to achieve conviction. If our Orange County criminal trial / litigation attorneys can defeat even one element, you are not guilty of that crime.
About Oberheiden, P.C. | Federal Criminal Trial Lawyers Serving Orange County
Oberheiden, P.C., is a federal defense law firm with a national presence, comprised entirely of senior attorneys, many of them having served years or decades with the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and other prosecutors’ offices prior to entering private practice.
Our Orange County criminal trial / litigation lawyers provide skilled, aggressive, and effective representation for people or business entities in the face of high-stakes federal allegations.
If you are at risk of being convicted of a federal crime at trial, we are ready to help you fight for your future. We understand that you are scared and concerned, and you want to hire an attorney team that not only has an excellent track record but will also fight for you with real, human passion. That is the attitude we bring to every case in Orange County and beyond.
Learn more about Oberheiden, P.C.:
Schedule Your Free and Confidential Case Assessment at Oberheiden, P.C.
If you are facing federal charges in Orange County, we urge you to contact us and talk to our defense team, right away. Someone from our office is available 24/7/365. If you wish to speak directly with one of our senior-most attorneys and one is not available immediately, our Orange County criminal trial / litigation attorneys will schedule an appointment for you as soon as possible. We do have emergency response plans available for urgent legal situations. Please call (214) 692-2171, or tell us how to reach you online today.