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What To Do First If You Get A Target Letter?

April 9, 2022 Federal Criminal Attorneys
What To Do First If You Get A Target Letter?

Federal criminal investigations are often large in scope, are intricate, and potentially involve numerous individuals. Federal criminal charges are serious accusations. Therefore, the government usually exercises significant caution when determining which individuals to formally accuse.

Under specific circumstances, subjects who said bureaucracy might believe had some involvement in varying federal criminal offenses might be sent a document called a target letter.

The Spodek Law Group, a team of skilled federal criminal defense lawyers serving New Jersey residents, requests their followers read this piece offering explanation regarding what a target letter is, in addition to the most appropriate actions those receiving said correspondences should take.

Definition

Federal government officials draft target letters to inform intended recipients that they might soon be subject to federal criminal prosecution.

These documents are authored following an investigation. Said undertakings often yield enough evidence to suggest that letter recipients engaged in some type of wrongdoing. Typically, however, target letters are issued to those suspected of engaging in one or more forms of white-collar offenses.

Information Contained Within

Said correspondences usually contain several key facets of information including the specific act the accused is believed to have committed, information on how to obtain legal representation should they not be able to afford said benefit, the alleged individual’s involvement in a grand jury investigations, and said subject’s right to remain silent.

Furthermore, the document might warn the recipient not take any potentially detrimental actions that might hinder or interfere with the ongoing investigation and may even invite said party to further discuss the issue with prosecutors.

Are Target Letters Merely A Prelude To Criminal Charges?

The short answer to this question is not necessarily. Occasionally, prosecutors cannot find enough credible evidence to proceed with charges or formal indictments.

Steps Recipients Are Encouraged To Take

Do Not Act Impulsively

Granted, receiving such a correspondence is stressful. That said, the individual in question should not make any rash decisions. They should, however, refrain from engaging in any actions federal authorities caution them not to partake in.

Consult With An Experienced Attorney

Again, it is crucial to reiterate that federal criminal charges are often complex. Therefore, target letter recipients are strongly encouraged to consult with an experienced federal criminal defense attorney as soon as possible.

Said legal professionals can consult with prosecutors on the client’s behalf and learn important information such as if the government intends to press charges, discover any particulars about the investigation prosecutors are at liberty to disclose, and agree upon possible ways the underlying issue can be resolved.

Effective federal criminal lawyers might be able to convince prosecutors to dismiss associated charges. In other events, said professionals might persuade prosecuting entities to consider potential targets as witnesses.

For the proper dispensation like immunity or a reduced sentence, a targeted subject could provide valuable information about a specific offense or possesses credible evidence about those masterminding such acts.

The Benefits Of Sending Target Letters

Target letters are far less formal than other means of pursuing prospective subjects of criminal investigations. Legal instruments like subpoenas, the dispatching of federal agents to conduct target interviews, and search warrant executions cannot be undertaken without a judge’s authorization.

Many legal scholars maintain that target letters are submitted to individuals prosecutors believe might be able to help them and encourage intended recipients to cooperate.

Potential Defensive Strategies

Most federal criminal defense attorneys maintain that a target letter recipient should never subscribe to a wait and see approach. Rather, said individual and their legal representation should promptly and actively respond to such inquiry.

The government might invite cooperation and be willing to hear what the recipient has to say but will not wait forever. Their duty is to stop a given crime and bring its alleged perpetrators to justice.

Quick intervention is needed to yield the target letter grantee potentially favorable outcomes such as:

Not Being Arrested

Once a client of a reputable criminal defense attorney, government officials are less likely to be formally arrested.

Avoiding Charges

Skilled defense attorneys might discover credible evidence that might help exonerate their client and help them avoid formal charges.

Contacting Us

Individuals who have received target letters are firmly urged to contact the legal professionals at the Spodek Law Firm. We have extensive experience handling such cases, can review a client’s specific circumstances, and formulate the best possible response strategy.

Those interested in learning more about our team or the services we provide should visit www.njcriminalattorneys.com.

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