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Faced 5+ Years in Prison

People Vs Joseph Amico

Covered by NYDaily News. Las Vegas man accused of threatening a prominent attorney and making vile remarks.

Faced 10+ Years in Prison

People Vs. Anna Sorokin

Covered by New York Times, and other outlets. Fake heiress accused of conning the city’s wealthy, and has an HBO special being made about her.

Faced 3+ Years in Prison

People Vs. Genevieve Sabourin

Accused of stalking Alec Baldwin. The case garnered nationwide attention, with USAToday, NYPost, and other media outlets following it closely.

Faced Potential Charges

Ghislaine Maxwell Juror

Juror who prompted calls for new Ghislaine Maxwell trial turns to lawyer who defended Anna Sorokin.

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Clients can use our portal to track the status of their case, stay in touch with us, upload documents, and more.

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Meet Todd Spodek


The Spodek Law Group understands how delicate high-profile cases can be, and has a strong track record of getting positive outcomes. Our lawyers service a clientele that is nationwide. With offices in both LA and NYC, and cases all across the country - Spodek Law Group is a top tier law firm.

Todd Spodek is a second generation attorney with immense experience. He has many years of experience handling 100’s of tough and hard to win trials. He’s been featured on major news outlets, such as New York Post, Newsweek, Fox 5 New York, South China Morning Post, Insider.com, and many others.

In 2022, Netflix released a series about one of Todd’s clients: Anna Delvey/Anna Sorokin.

Why Clients Choose Spodek Law Group

The reason is simple: clients want white glove service, and lawyers who can win. Every single client who works with the Spodek Law Group is aware that the attorney they hire could drastically change the outcome of their case. Hiring the Spodek Law Group means you’re taking your future seriously. Our lawyers handle cases nationwide, ranging from NYC to LA. Our philosophy is fair and simple: our nyc criminal lawyers only take on clients who we know will benefit from our services.

We’re selective about the clients we work with, and only take on cases we know align with our experience – and where we can make a difference. This is different from other law firms who are not invested in your success nor care about your outcome.

If you have a legal issue, call us for a consultation.
We are available 24/7, to help you with any – and all, challenges you face.

What is the Difference Between State and Federal Crimes in NYC?

What is the Difference Between State and Federal Crimes in NYC?

Federal vs State vs City Crimes

The level at which a crime is prosecuted depends on a few key factors:

  • Which government’s laws were broken – Federal charges involve violations of federal statutes while state charges involve violations of New York penal codes. City charges relate to violations of the NYC administrative code.
  • Where the crime took place – Federal crimes often involve interstate commerce, while state crimes happen within state borders. City crimes occur within city limits.
  • Severity and type of offense – More serious felonies like murder, rape, kidnapping and terrorism may rise to the federal level, while misdemeanors and minor offenses tend to stay at the city/state level.

So a single criminal act could potentially violate federal, state and city laws simultaneously. Prosecutors have discretion in deciding what level of charges to file based on the nature of the crime.

Key Differences in Federal vs State Courts

If charged, the court system that handles the case will depend on whether federal or state charges are filed:

  • Constitutional rightsFederal courts follow the US Constitution while state courts follow the New York State Constitution. The rights guaranteed to defendants have some differences.
  • Sentencing guidelinesFederal sentences tend to be longer since federal sentencing guidelines are stricter. New York state has more flexibility on sentencing terms.
  • Prison systems – Those convicted serve federal sentences in the nationwide federal prison system as opposed to New York State prisons. Conditions and parole eligibility differ.
  • Appeals process – Federal cases get appealed through the circuit court system leading up to the US Supreme Court. New York state appeals go up to the NY Court of Appeals.

So while the trial and sentencing phase differs significantly between courts, the basics of the underlying criminal procedure remain the same. Both federal and state courts presume defendants innocent unless proven guilty and require proof beyond a reasonable doubt.

Examples of Federal vs State Crimes

There are many scenarios where criminal acts lead to both federal and state charges. Some examples include:

  • Drug crimes – Selling illegal drugs often triggers federal drug charges as well as state narcotics charges for the same underlying offense conduct.
  • Racketeering – Violent organized crime involving illegal gambling, extortion, murder, etc can result in federal RICO charges as well as state charges.
  • Securities fraud – Defrauding investors typically means facing both federal securities violations as well as New York state securities fraud charges.
  • Public corruption – When public officials breach public trust for unlawful gain, they often face both federal and state public corruption charges.

So in cases like these with complex, multi-jurisdictional criminal activity, prosecutors have tremendous discretion in deciding whether to pursue federal, state or concurrent charges against defendants.

How Federal & State Sentences Interact

A key consideration with facing both federal and state charges is how the multiple sentences interact:

  • Concurrent sentences – Judges can rule for sentences to be served concurrently, meaning at the same time. So a 5 year state sentence and 3 year federal sentence would mean 5 total years of incarceration.
  • Consecutive sentences – Judges can also impose back-to-back sentencing, meaning the state and federal time is served sequentially. So in the above example, the total incarceration would be 8 years.
  • Primary custody – Typically when concurrent sentences are imposed, the longer state or federal sentence has primary custody over where the incarceration takes place.

The interaction of federal and state sentences varies greatly case-by-case based on prosecutorial discretion and judicial determinations. Defense attorneys can argue for concurrent, cooperative sentencing arrangements in appropriate cases.

Finding an Attorney for State vs Federal Charges

Facing criminal prosecution at the state or federal level in New York can be daunting. An experienced NYC criminal defense lawyer can be invaluable in navigating these complex legal waters. Here are some tips on finding the right attorney:

  • Look for a lawyer with specific experience defending state cases in NY state courts or federal cases in US District courts
  • Understand the key procedural differences between court systems and how they impact defense strategy
  • Choose counsel with strong negotiation skills to try to plea bargain concurrent sentences
  • Find an attorney well-versed in the sentencing guidelines and laws applicable to your case
  • Select a resourced legal team that can handle intense motions practice and litigation needs

Every case is different, but having the right attorney by your side can help achieve the most favorable outcome whether facing state or federal criminal prosecution.


For more information on the differences between federal and New York state crimes, please consult these additional resources:

I hope this overview has helped explain some of the key aspects differentiating federal and state criminal prosecutions in NYC. Let me know if you have any other questions!

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I was searching for a law firm with some power to help me deal with a warrant in New York . After 6 days I decided to go with Spodek Law Group. It helped that This law firm is well respected by not only the top law firms in New York , but the DA , Judge as well. I...

~Fonder Brandon

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It was my good fortune to retain Spodek Law Group for representation for my legal needs. From the beginning, communication was prompt and thorough. Todd, Kenneth and Alex were the first people I worked with and they all made me feel comfortable and confident that the team was going to work hard for me. Everything was explained and any concerns...

~A G

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After meeting with several law firms, I chose the Spodek Law Group not only for their professionalism and experience, but for the personal attention given to me right from the initial consultation. It is important to recognize how crucial having the right legal team is when faced with potentially life altering events that impact families and the lives of loved...

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