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I want to personally welcome you to the Hedding Law Firm Federal Criminal Defense Blog. We will make every effort to discuss the latest developments and issues in the Federal Criminal Defense World. There are so many issues related to federal criminal cases, I am sure that we will cover many of them as the months and years pass.

Probably the most significant topic ,related to the federal criminal system, is the federal sentencing guidelines. Many people do not realize that the same federal guidelines are used across the country. It is also important to note that the federal criminal defense sentencing guidelines are advisory..a judge now has the ability to give whatever sentence they deem long as they consider the sentencing guides. This development has now shifted significant discretion back to the federal court judges. In my opinion, this has given and will continue to give deserving defendants the opportunity to stay out of federal prison.

I sincerely hope that you enjoy reading about some of the topics, issues and cases in this blog. If you are charged with a federal crime, I encourage you to contact me and discuss your case. I have successfully handled many federal criminal defense cases over the years and feel confident that once you meet with me, you will be convinced that I have the know how and legal abilities to help you.

Why Hire a Lawyer Before a Federal Case Has Been Filed?

What is the Benefit of Hiring a Federal Criminal Defense Attorney Before the Case is Filed? A lot of people get wind that they’re being investigated and instead of getting to an attorney right away hiring them pre-filing, they just bury their head in the sand and hope for the best. They don’t want to fork-out the money.  They figure, if I hire an attorney then they’re going to think that I’m guilty.  All of these things are just short-sided thinking, and arguably, the reason you got yourself in this problem in the first place. Criminal Investigation By Federal Law Enforcement...

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How Bail Works in a Federal Criminal Case

This bail issue comes up all the time, and unfortunately, people are so zeroed in on it, they forget about the fact they actually have a federal criminal case pending against them. Regardless of whether they or their loved one gets out on federal bail, that case is not going away.  Depending on how serious it is, the person is likely to get some federal time anyway. So, the whole bail issue a lot of times, not always, is a sidetrack issue that really doesn’t allow the person to grapple with what they have to related to their federal criminal...

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What Happens at Initial Appearance in a Federal Criminal Case?

Typically, when somebody gets arrested, especially here in the Central District, Los Angeles and that area, someone is going to be taken into the court. I’ve seen the arrest being made early in the morning and then the person makes the 2:00 calendar in the federal court, at which time they’ll be given what charges they’re being accused of.  They will have an opportunity to speak to their attorney. That’s why it’s so important if you’re trying to get an attorney for a loved one who’s just been recently arrested by the feds, pick up the phone now and call...

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Status of Federal Criminal System During COVID-19 Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed federal criminal practice significantly. One of the biggest things that is being prevented from happening is criminal defendants actually going into the courts. It’s very rare now that you see a defendant being able to appear in court.  Whereas, every other time when there wasn’t a pandemic, whenever there was some sort of a court proceeding, I would say 95% of the time, the defendant and the attorney are going to be there. Video Hearings in Federal Court The federal judges do not want people in their courtroom.  That’s the bottom line I see, so...

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Are you Facing Prison if Charged in a Federal Drug Case?

A lot of these big drug conspiracy cases that are charged, not only are people facing prison, they’re facing mandatory minimums. That’s the killer when it comes to federal drug prosecutions. There’s a whole chart and a whole table that I go through with my clients when we sit down and meet if they’re charged at the federal level with drug conspiracy or drug-related offenses. Mandatory Minimum Sentences in Federal Drug Cases Basically, what it does is, it lays out mandatory minimum sentences for each type of drug that somebody could be caught conspiring to sell, transport and a lot...

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What is Necessary to Prove a RICO Federal Indictment?

This RICO charge is a very serious one and a lot of times when I see people getting wrapped up in a RICO charge it involves multiple defendants. In other words, it’s not just one person getting indicted at the federal level, it’s a bunch of people getting indicted. A lot of times we will see gang members getting caught up and charged with RICO charges and in a lot of these cases, they’re facing the rest of their lives in federal prison. Federal prison for gang members is not good because they’re not able to do as many things...

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Federal or State Charges in Large Drug Seizures?

How is it Determined Whether a Case is Filed at the Federal or State Level in a Large Drug Seizure? In these big drug seizures where kilos of cocaine, methamphetamine or some other drug are found and the person is taken into custody, the question becomes, is the case going to be state or federal? A lot of these big drug cases end up being federal because the feds are usually the ones who are sophisticated enough to be able to investigate these cases. They will get wiretap search warrants on numerous people that are involved in these cases. Then,...

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Defense of Federal Access Fraud Charges

Learn the Best Defenses Against Federal Credit Card Fraud Related Charges Under 18 U.S.C. § 1029 There are a lot of crimes being prosecuted that they are characterizing as access fraud.  It really has to do with some sort of credit card fraud under 18 U.S.C. § 1029 or taking someone’s personal information. Then using that information to be able to have credit cards, charge a bunch of money and then leave the person high and dry.  The federal authorities will get involved in these access or credit card fraud if it involves: (1) sophistication; and (2) a lot of money. The...

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What To Do If Your House Was Raided By Federal Agents

What Should You Do if Federal Authorities Raided Your House with a Search Warrant? This is a common thing where the feds will get a search warrant and they’ll come in and take certain property, and believe it or not, they won’t arrest the person. If you’re reading this before that happens to you, which is usually not the case, it’s after the fact, of course the first thing I would tell you is not to give any statement to the police. When they come in it’s scary and a lot of times what they’re going to do is attempt...

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Why Can’t Some Defendants Bail Out in Federal Criminal Cases?

Why do Defendants Get Taken into Custody In Federal Criminal Cases and Cannot Bail Out? This is a common question and I see where people are being detained in federal cases and cannot get out.  People aren’t used to this, because in state cases, a person is almost always entitled to some sort of a bail, even if it’s a high bail, you could use a bail bondsman and bail out if you have enough money and enough equity. But in a federal case, the government actually has the ability to argue to the judge that you should be held...

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