I Got Served a Federal Grand Jury Subpoena
As anyone would be, you are obviously shaken and nervous after receiving a subpoena to testify in a federal grand jury. A federal criminal investigation in a minefield and without the proper understanding of what the governments’ intentions are, your life could literally be blown to pieces. This is not the time to believe you can talk yourself out of anything or believe you are innocent and therefore the government has no intention of prosecuting you.
It is wisely advised that if you find yourself within the orbit of a federal investigation or grand jury, you should contact an attorney who practices federal criminal law. It is crucial to understand how you are viewed by the federal prosecutor, there are three categories: witness, subject or target. An experienced federal attorney will hopefully be able to flush out the government’s intentions and find out what category you fall under.
The Three Possible Catagories You Fall Into If Subpoened By The Federal Government
- Witness: Being a witness is the ideal situation when you have been served a subpoena or contacted by a federal agency. This does not mean you necessarily witnessed a crime, but you may have information relevant to a criminal investigation. An experienced attorney will strive to protect you by having a proffer agreement, allowing for you to testify without the concern of having your testimony used against you. This protection though is obviously only binding if you tell the truth. Lying to federal authorities is a crime and lying in a grand jury proceeding is a crime, see statute.
- Subject: A subject is somewhere between a witness and a target. The federal prosecutor believes you may have possibly engaged in criminal conduct and wants to further investigate. The government may not have the evidence yet, but they are working on building their case. Obviously if you are a subject you need to hire an attorney.
- Target: Just as it sounds, you are the target of a federal investigation and the government is looking to prosecute you for criminal conduct.
No matter your status in a federal investigation, it can always change as you continue to navigate through the minefield.
Whether there is a pending investigation, grand jury, or whether you are arrested, volunteering information to federal agents or a federal prosecutor, whether an admission, denial or details of a crime, can lead to further criminal exposure and further damage to your defense and ultimately your life. It is wise for you to consult with an experienced federal criminal defense attorney.
How Does an Attorney Help With A Grand Jury Subpoena
It is imperative that you immediately contact an attorney who can thoroughly advise you how to respond with the goal of protecting your constitutional rights. An experienced lawyer will help you gather all necessary information, will maintain a dialogue with the designated prosecutor, and will guide you throughout this complicated process.
If You Have Any Questions Regarding a Federal Grand Jury Subpoena or Any Other Criminal Matter
Please contact Clifton Law Office, you can reach me at my contact page online or call me directly at 904-209-4883.