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Grand Jury Investigations (continued)

Capital Crimes Or Crimes Requiring A Potential Death Penalty Require A Grand Jury

A focus of a grand jury investigation is an individual who the prosecutor or grand jury has significant evidence connecting them to the commission of a law-breaking offense and who is in the opinion of the prosecutor a presumed defendant; a subject of an investigation is a person whose conduct is within the scope of the grand jury's investigation; a skilled defense lawyer should be familiar with the different types of immunity which can be obtained for such categories of grand jury witnesses before it is advisable for such a person to appear before the grand jury.

In such cases skilled defense counsel should be familiar with rules concerning the Fifth amendment privilege and what category of such witnesses may invoke this privilege before they agree to appear before the grand jury. There are other situations where such witnesses may actually want to appear before the grand jury; a skilled defense lawyer should discuss the rights and obligations of such witnesses with his client and be aware of the rules governing United States Attorney Offices in such situations.

Motions to dismiss Indictments may also be brought for the presentation of illegally obtained evidence before Federal Grand Juries; Although hearsay is admissable before a federal grand jury prosecutors can not mislead grand jurors in to believing that the witness is giving his personal account of what occurred. Skilled defense lawyers should be aware of the Department of Justice rule which requires Assistant United States Attorneys to present exculpatory evidence i.e. substantial evidence that negates the guilt of the accused, of which the prosecutor is personally aware. Remedies are available to the defense for such conduct if the prosecutor in such situation fails to present this exculpatory evidence.

Only certain authorized attorneys are permitted to conduct grand jury investigations and a skilled defense attorney is aware of such limitation. Likewise there are very strict rules of secrecy which apply to grand jury proceedings particularly related to the presence of individuals in the grand jury room when presentations are made such as interpreters grand jurors and the attorneys for the government; matters occurring before a federal grand jury set forth in Rule 6 of the Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure govern these rules of secrecy Skilled defense counsel should be aware of the rules that do not apply to witnesses who appear before the grand jury concerning these secrecy rules as well as the limitations beyond which information of pending grand jury proceedings may be disclosed.

The Assistant Attorney General of the Criminal Division must offer foregoing approval before a grand jury subpoena may be issued to an attorney for information related to a client or fees paid by such client; prior approval of the Attorney General is required before a subpoena may be issued to members of the news media for information related to the news gathering function; Likewise certain rules must be followed before grand jury information is disclosed to state or local law enforcement authorities. A skilled defense lawyer should be familiar with all of these rules to be in a position to best defend his client.

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When you need an experienced and committed defense lawyer you can trust in Southern Florida, contact the criminal defense law firm of Michael B. Cohen, P.A. online or call now at: 954.928.0059 or 561.366.8200.