Arrested but Not Charged

While pre-charge investigations are most common in complex white-collar cases (See Target Letter), law enforcement has grown increasingly reliant on technology as they build cases in other types of crimes as well.  These investigations are complicated and develop at a painstakingly slow pace.  Most people who are the subject of an investigation will not be made aware of that investigation until it is too late and they are arrested.  But in some cases, the investigation will make itself known in one way or another.

Our clients generally become aware that they are being investigated in several ways, including, but not limited to:

  • An unusual request from a bank or other financial institution for documentation.
  • Friends or family report being contacted by law enforcement.
  • Unfamiliar vehicles parked in front of your house, or in some cases, following you on the road.

So now you might be feeling like all you can do is “hurry up and wait.”  And it is at this time that the value of retaining an attorney is at its zenith.  First and foremost, the only way you may be able to avoid being formally charged is by beginning your own investigation.  If the government had all the information that they needed, you would have been charged by now.  But they do not.  And that is where we come in.  Depending on the progress (or lack thereof) of the investigation, we will work with the government to produce the information they need and which, more often than one would think, demonstrates that no criminal conduct occurred.  Alternatively, even if a law was inadvertently broken, does not mean that criminal charges need to be brought.

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