Pretrial advocacy is an important avenue to avoid being charged with a crime or to get formal charges dismissed without facing the risk of a trial. Many times our clients have avoided deportation and catastrophic immigration consequences because of our persuasive pretrial advocacy. Here is a sample of some of our pretrial advocacy success stories. To protect the confidentiality of our clients, real names and initials have been replaced.
Preventing charges from being filed
- L.I. was under investigation by federal authorities on suspicion of providing material support to terrorists. After representation, no charges were filed and adverse immigration consequences were avoided.
- K.O. was under investigation by federal authorities for links with a person designated as a wanted terrorist by the U.S. government. After representation, no charges were filed.
- D.F. was under investigation by federal authorities on suspicion of sending threatening materials through the U.S. mails. After representation, no charges were filed.
- B.A. was under investigation by state authorities for potentially obstructing justice by lying to law enforcement officials during a homicide investigation. After representation, no charges were filed.
Getting charges dropped or dismissed
- T.K. a Chinese immigrant who has lived in this country for over 20 years, was indicted on charges of federal immigration fraud and faced up to 20 years in prison for knowingly assisting undocumented immigrants in finding jobs in violation of federal law. After negotiations, the government agreed to defer prosecution. Six months later all charges were dismissed.
- H.C. a professional living in the United States with a work permit, was arrested for a felony for illegally defacing the VIN number on a motorcycle. Conviction on the charges would result not only in a felony conviction, but also in the revocation of the work permit and deportation. After negotiations, state prosecutors agreed to reduce the charges to a non-criminal violation with no jail time; the work permit remained intact and no adverse immigration consequences occurred.
- O.S. an immigrant from West Africa, was pulled over for a driving infraction while driving his cab in Manhattan. NYPD officers charged O.S. with resisting arrest and obstruction for allegedly refusing to provide ID and fighting with the officers. After refusing a plea bargain and preparing for trial, all charges were dismissed and adverse immigration consequences were avoided.
- G.R. was charged in federal court with conspiring to distribute heroin by agreeing to carry suitcases of heroin on airplanes from foreign countries into the United States. After negotiations, the government agreed to defer prosecution. Six months later all charges were dismissed.
Obtaining reduced sentences
- N.V. a convicted felon out on parole, was charged by federal authorities with conspiracy to possess and distribute crack cocaine and heroin under 21. U.S.C. 841 (b)(1)(C). Although he faced a federal sentencing guidelines range of 30-37 months’ imprisonment, the Court sentenced N.V. to 8 months’ jail. No cooperation or 5K1.1 motion was involved.
- Y.P. a convicted felon, was charged by federal authorities with conspiracy to possess and distribute heroin in violation of 21 USC 841(b)(1)(A). Although Y.P. faced a ten-year mandatory minimum sentence, the federal prosecutors agreed to reduce the charges to one that did not carry any mandatory minimum sentence. Instead of receiving a sentence of ten years or more, Y.P. eventually was sentenced to 36 months’ of imprisonment. No cooperation or 5K1.1 motion was involved.
- U.C. was charged with assault for punching and injuring another person and faced deportation if convicted. State prosecutors agreed to reduce the charges to a non-criminal violation with no jail time. U.C. thus avoided a criminal record, jail, and deportation.
- W.Y. was arrested for possession of a firearm after NYPD conducted a search and recovered a handgun in W.Y.’s bedroom. After prolonged litigation and DNA testing showing that W.Y’s DNA was not on the firearm, state prosecutors dismissed the felony firearms charge.
- E.E. a 15 year-old, was charged with attempted murder and possession of a firearm stemming from a shooting in Manhattan. After negotiations, state prosecutors agreed to dismiss the attempted murder charge and permit E.E. to plead guilty to a reduced charge. E.E. eventually was sentenced to five years of probation as a youthful offender, meaning that there was no criminal conviction on E.E.’s record.
- S.H. was charged with assault, reckless endangerment, for disobeying traffic police and driving a motorcycle into the route of the Presidential motorcade near the U.N. and ramming the motorcycle into a law enforcement officer. Believing S.H. may have been a terrorist, the police tackled S.H. and arrested S.H. After negotiations, the District Attorney’s Office agreed to reduce the charges with no jail time.