Michigan Federal Defense Lawyer – Fighting Violations of the Fourth Amendment

When law enforcement officers or agents violate a person’s rights, everyone is in jeopardy if a court does not check their conduct. It takes a top defense lawyer to get a judge to take action.

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Decades of Experience Protecting and Defending Clients in Federal Court

The 4th Amendment to the United States Constitution forbids illegal searches and seizures. When the FBI, DEA, or any law enforcement agency cuts corners or improperly obtains a warrant, a judge can suppress evidence or dismiss charges. Federal defense lawyers practicing in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan know that the US attorney’s office vigorously pursues convictions and harsh sentences. A zealous attorney will not spare any effort when fighting to protect and defend clients facing serious charges.

A search is valid if authorized by a search warrant or a legally cognizable warrant exception under the law. A law enforcement officer must present sufficient facts to convince a judge or magistrate that sufficient evidence justifies issuing a warrant. Unfortunately, law enforcement officers make mistakes, and sometimes, they intentionally or recklessly make false or exaggerated statements when attempting to get a search warrant. It would be improper if an officer fails to include pertinent information in a warrant request or discredits known evidence. It can be the basis for a prevailing Motion to Suppress Evidence.

What to look for in a federal defense lawyer in Michigan?

When facing federal charges in Michigan or elsewhere, choosing the right federal defense lawyer in Michigan can make a significant difference in the outcome of the case. Here are some qualities to look for when selecting a federal defense lawyer:

  • Experience in Federal Court: Federal court procedures and rules differ from state court. Look for an attorney with substantial experience representing clients in federal court, as they’ll be familiar with the federal rules of evidence, federal rules of criminal procedure, the local United States District Attorneys, and the local rules of the particular federal court.
  • Specialized Knowledge: Some lawyers specialize in federal criminal law, such as white-collar crimes, drug trafficking, or fraud. Others practice multiple areas of law concurrently (General Practice Lawyers). Choose an attorney with expertise in the charges you’re facing.
  • Reputation: A lawyer’s reputation among peers, prosecutors, and judges can strongly indicate their capabilities. Seek recommendations, look for reviews, or ask about their reputation within legal circles. A top lawyer with an esteemed reputation enters the courtroom with an established credibility that can significantly impact the outcome of a case.
  • Track Record: While past success doesn’t guarantee future results, a lawyer with a history of successful outcomes in federal cases or favorable plea bargains can be a good sign of an attorney’s capabilities and devotion to their clients.
  • Strong Research and Analytical Skills: Federal cases can involve vast amounts of evidence, including electronic data. The best federal defense attorneys can analyze large amounts of information, identify inconsistencies, and build a robust defense strategy. The advantage of hiring a criminal defense law firm, such as LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C., is getting a team of lawyers and experienced paralegals, ensuring you have a team with the necessary resources to protect and defend you.
  • Excellent Communication: Your attorney should be able to explain complex legal concepts in understandable terms, keep you informed about your case’s progress, and communicate effectively with the court and opposing counsel. Furthermore, your lawyer should treat you with consideration and dignity. No one is better than anyone else, and everyone deserves to be treated respectfully. A lawyer’s ability to communicate with the assigned Assistant United States Attorney might make the difference between dismissed charges and a jury trial.
  • Dedication to Clients: The best lawyers are deeply committed to achieving the best possible outcome for their clients. They should be available to answer questions, address concerns, and provide guidance throughout the process. Anyone facing the prospect of a federal criminal conviction deserves legal counsel who is loyal, devoted, and determined to do whatever it takes to achieve the best possible result.
  • Negotiation Skills: Many federal cases are resolved through plea agreements. An attorney with strong negotiation skills can often achieve better plea terms or even get charges reduced or dismissed. The best trial lawyers get the best plea offers. If an attorney is not a credible threat to the prosecution, they have little incentive to offer a generous plea bargain.
  • Integrity: Trust is a cornerstone of the attorney-client relationship. You should feel your lawyer is honest, transparent, and has your best interests at heart. If your lawyer doesn’t have a reputation for their integrity, there is little hope they will be taken seriously by the judge or prosecutor assigned to your case.
  • Resources: Federal cases can be complex and resource-intensive. Ensure your attorney or their firm has the necessary resources, including support staff, investigators, and expert witnesses. The benefit of hiring a law firm is the combined resources of several lawyers are utilized to retain the best of the best experts and investigators in Michigan.
  • Familiarity with Local Procedures and Personnel: Each federal district has unique procedures and practices. An attorney familiar with the Eastern District of Michigan, its judges, and the U.S. Attorney’s Office practices is advantageous.
  • Comfort and Compatibility: While all the above factors are critical, choosing an attorney you feel comfortable with and trust is essential, given the personal and high-stakes nature of criminal defense.

Lastly, always ensure the lawyer is in good standing with the state bar and has no history of ethical violations. If possible, meet with a couple of attorneys before deciding who might be the best fit for your case. The Federal Defense Team with LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C. offers free consultations and confidential case evaluations. If there is a way to help you, we will find it!

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False, Misleading, or Exaggerated Facts in a Search Warrant Affidavit

When a law enforcement agent includes false, misleading, or exaggerated facts in an affidavit presented to justify a search warrant, there is a violation of the 4th Amendment. Law enforcement is obliged to include facts in an affidavit in support of a search warrant. The facts or averments must be accurate to the best of the officer or agent’s information, knowledge, and belief. When federal agents or police officers twist the truth to justify a search, the constitutional defense team with LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C. will do what is necessary to fight for a client’s rights and seek the suppression of illegally seized evidence. Federal constitutional law applies to federal and state felony and misdemeanor cases.

Franks Hearing and Seeking to Suppress Illegally Seized Evidence

In the United States District Court in Michigan, the evidentiary hearing to evaluate an alleged constitutional violation related to a search warrant issuance is called a “Franks Hearing.” In Franks v. Delaware, 438 U.S. 154 (1978), the Supreme Court held: “[W]here the defendant makes a substantial preliminary showing that a false statement knowingly and intentionally, or with reckless disregard for the truth, was included by the affiant in the warrant affidavit, and if the allegedly false statement is necessary to the finding of probable cause, the Fourth Amendment requires that a hearing be held at the defendant’s request.

At a Franks Hearing, the defendant must establish by a preponderance of the evidence that law enforcement committed perjury or exhibited a reckless disregard for the truth in the affidavit used to procure a search warrant. If the defendant can meet this burden, they must then show the affidavit’s remaining content is insufficient to establish probable cause. If the defendant completes both burdens, the search warrant is void, and the evidence seized gets excluded. In other words, “Motion to Dismiss is Granted!”

Michigan Criminal Defense Attorney

Experienced, Effective, and Affordable Michigan Federal Defense Lawyer

If you need experienced, effective, and affordable representation in a federal or Michigan court, you need to look no further than LEWIS & DICKSTEIN, P.L.L.C. Our unique team approach to criminal defense gives us an advantage over solo practitioners. It gives us a fighting chance against the United States Attorney’s Office or a state prosecutor. No other lawyers will fight harder or more effectively to protect and defend you. Call us for a free consultation, and we will take the time to patiently talk with you, answer your questions, and help you figure out your best options. We will find a way to help you.

Call us today at (248) 263-6800 for a free consultation or complete an online Request for Assistance Form. We will contact you promptly and find a way to help you.

We will find a way to help you and, most importantly,
we are not afraid to win!

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