24/7 call for a free consultation 212-300-5196




When you’re facing a federal issue, you need an attorney whose going to be available 24/7 to help you get the results and outcome you need. The value of working with the Spodek Law Group is that we treat each and every client like a member of our family.

How Federal Agencies Share Grand Jury Subpoena Information

How Federal Agencies Share Grand Jury Subpoena Information

When a federal grand jury investigation is underway, federal prosecutors have the power to issue subpoenas to obtain documents and testimony relevant to the investigation. Grand jury subpoenas are an important investigative tool that allows prosecutors to gather evidence and determine if there is probable cause to bring charges against a suspect.

While grand jury proceedings are conducted in secret, federal agencies often need to share information obtained through grand jury subpoenas in order to conduct investigations effectively. There are rules and procedures in place to balance the need for secrecy with the need for coordination among agencies.

What is a federal grand jury?

A federal grand jury is a group of 16 to 23 citizens who are tasked with determining if there is probable cause to believe a crime has been committed and to bring charges against the suspect through an indictment. The grand jury does not determine guilt or innocence – that is left to the trial jury if charges are brought.

Federal grand juries have broad investigative powers. They can issue subpoenas demanding documents, physical evidence or witness testimony. Grand juries operate in secret so witnesses can speak freely without fear of retaliation or harm to reputations in case no indictment is brought.

Why is grand jury secrecy important?

There are several key reasons grand jury proceedings are kept secret:

  • Protect the reputations of suspects who may be under investigation but ultimately are not charged if the grand jury does not find probable cause.
  • Prevent suspects from being tipped off so they cannot tamper with evidence or coordinate false testimony.
  • Encourage witness cooperation by protecting them from retaliation, intimidation or harm.
  • Prevent public confusion if information about an ongoing investigation is revealed before charges are filed.

Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 6(e) codifies the rules around grand jury secrecy. All grand jurors, interpreters, court reporters, attorneys and other personnel involved in the proceedings must keep everything related to the grand jury secret unless specifically authorized by a court order.

Sharing grand jury information among federal agencies

While grand jury proceedings are secret, sometimes information obtained through the grand jury needs to be shared with other federal agencies involved in an investigation. For example, if a grand jury subpoena turns up evidence of tax fraud, that information may need to be shared with the IRS. Or if terrorism is suspected, the FBI may need access to testimony and documents.

Christine Twomey
Christine Twomey
Just had my Divorce case settled 2 months ago after having a horrible experience with another firm. I couldn’t be happier with Claire Banks and Elizabeth Garvey with their outstanding professionalism in doing so with Spodek Law Group. Any time I needed questions answered they were always prompt in doing so with all my uncertainties after 30 yrs of marriage.I feel from the bottom of my heart you will NOT be disappointed with either one. Thanks a million.
Brendan huisman
Brendan huisman
Alex Zhik contacted me almost immediately when I reached out to Spodek for a consultation and was able to effectively communicate the path forward/consequences of my legal issue. I immediately agreed to hire Alex for his services and did not regret my choice. He was able to cover my case in court (with 1 day notice) and not only was he able to push my case down, he carefully negotiated a dismissal of the charge altogether. I highly recommend Spodek, and more specifically, Alex Zhik for all of your legal issues. Thanks guys!
Guerline Menard
Guerline Menard
Thanks again Spodek law firm, particularly Esq Claire Banks who stood right there with us up to the finish line. Attached photos taken right outside of the court building and the smile on our faces represented victory, a breath of fresh air and satisfaction. We are very happy that this is over and we can move on with our lives. Thanks Spodek law 🙏🏼🙏🏼🙏🏼🙏🏼🙌🏼❤️
Keisha Parris
Keisha Parris
Believe every single review here about Alex Z!! From our initial consultation, it was evident that Alex possessed a profound understanding of criminal law and a fierce dedication to his clients rights. Throughout the entirety of my case, Alex exhibited unparalleled professionalism and unwavering commitment. What sets Alex apart is not only his legal expertise but also his genuine compassion for his clients. He took the time to thoroughly explain my case, alleviating any concerns I had along the way. His exact words were “I’m not worried about it”. His unwavering support and guidance were invaluable throughout the entire process. I am immensely grateful for Alex's exceptional legal representation and wholeheartedly recommend his services to anyone in need of a skilled criminal defense attorney. Alex Z is not just a lawyer; he is a beacon of hope for those navigating the complexities of the legal system. If you find yourself in need of a dedicated and competent legal advocate, look no further than Alex Z.
Taïko Beauty
Taïko Beauty
I don’t know where to start, I can write a novel about this firm, but one thing I will say is that having my best interest was their main priority since the beginning of my case which was back in Winter 2019. Miss Claire Banks, one of the best Attorneys in the firm represented me very well and was very professional, respectful, and truthful. Not once did she leave me in the dark, in fact she presented all options and routes that could possibly be considered for my case and she reinsured me that no matter what I decided to do, her and the team will have my back and that’s exactly what happened. Not only will I be liberated from this case, also, I will enjoy my freedom and continue to be a mother to my first born son and will have no restrictions with accomplishing my goals in life. Now that’s what I call victory!! I thank the Lord, My mother, Claire, and the Spodek team for standing by me and fighting with me. Words can’t describe how grateful I am to have the opportunity to work with this team. I’m very satisfied, very pleased with their performance, their hard work, and their diligence. Thank you team!
Anthony Williams
Anthony Williams
Hey, how you guys doing? Good afternoon my name is Anthony Williams I just want to give a great shout out to the team of. Spodek law group. It is such a honor to use them and to use their assistance through this whole case from start to finish. They did everything that they said they was gonna do and if it ever comes down to it, if I ever have to use them again, hands-down they will be the first law office at the top of my list, thank you guys so much. It was a pleasure having you guys by my side so if you guys ever need them, do not hesitate to pick up the phone and give them a call.
Loveth Okpedo
Loveth Okpedo
Very professional, very transparent, over all a great experience
Bee L
Bee L
Amazing experience with Spodek! Very professional lawyers who take your case seriously. They treated me with respect, were always available, and answered any and all questions. They were able to help me very successfully and removed a huge stress. Highly recommend.
divesh patel
divesh patel
I can't recommend Alex Zhik and Spodek Law Firm highly enough for their exceptional legal representation and personal mentorship. From the moment I engaged their services in October 2022, Alex took the time to understand my case thoroughly and provided guidance every step of the way. Alex's dedication to my case went above and beyond my expectations. His expertise, attention to detail, and commitment to achieving the best possible outcome were evident throughout the entire process. He took the time to mentor me, ensuring I understood the legal complexities involved to make informed decisions. Alex is the kind of guy you would want to have a beer with and has made a meaningful impact on me. I also want to acknowledge Todd Spodek, the leader of the firm, who played a crucial role in my case. His leadership and support bolstered the efforts of Alex, and his involvement highlighted the firm's commitment to excellence. Thanks to Alex Zhik and Todd Spodek, I achieved the outcome I desired, and I am incredibly grateful for their professionalism, expertise, and genuine care. If you're in need of legal representation, look no further than this outstanding team.

Rule 6(e) does allow for sharing of grand jury information under certain circumstances and following certain procedures:

  • Prosecutors may share information with other federal grand juries investigating the same issue or related matters.
  • Prosecutors may share information with other government attorneys and assistants involved in enforcing federal criminal law.
  • Information may be shared with law enforcement personnel as needed to assist prosecutors with the investigation.
  • Upon court order, information may be shared for reasons of national security or to investigate threats against grand jurors or witnesses.
  • Upon court order, information may be shared with state or Indian tribal officials if it reveals a violation of state criminal law.

However, prosecutors cannot just freely share grand jury information with other agencies. Specific procedures must be followed, such as obtaining a court order or establishing a need related to federal law enforcement. Records related to grand jury proceedings must remain sealed unless a specific exception applies.

Challenges of sharing grand jury information

While sharing grand jury information among federal agencies is sometimes necessary, it also poses challenges:

  • Other agencies may try to use grand jury information for purposes unrelated to the criminal investigation.
  • Information could be mishandled or leaked publicly.
  • Suspects may accuse the government of misusing information.
  • Coordination among agencies can slow down the investigation.
  • Turf wars could emerge over who controls information.

To balance these concerns, prosecutors are advised to consider alternatives before issuing subpoenas, only share what is truly necessary, and bring subpoenaed records before the grand jury so jurors can determine what is relevant.

Courts also scrutinize requests to share grand jury information to ensure proper procedures are followed. For example, the IRS has strict internal rules governing when its agents can access grand jury information from another agency.

Grand jury subpoenas vs other investigative tools

In addition to grand jury subpoenas, federal prosecutors have other tools they can use to obtain information for investigations that don’t involve grand juries at all. These include:

  • Search warrants – these allow law enforcement to enter and search property with court approval.
  • Administrative subpoenas – federal agencies can issue these directly without court involvement.
  • Witness interviews – prosecutors can meet with witnesses and suspects voluntarily to gather information.
  • Undercover operations – these secretly gather information without tipping off suspects.

However, grand jury subpoenas have some advantages like being able to compel testimony and impose penalties if the subpoena is ignored. But they also come with the challenges of maintaining secrecy. Prosecutors weigh the pros and cons of the different investigative tools when building a case.

Key takeaways

  • Federal grand jury proceedings are conducted in secret to protect the integrity of investigations.
  • However, sometimes grand jury information needs to be shared across federal agencies.
  • Rule 6(e) allows sharing in certain circumstances but procedures must be followed.
  • Courts and agencies scrutinize requests to share information to prevent misuse.
  • Prosecutors also have other investigative tools besides grand jury subpoenas.

Balancing secrecy with coordination is an ongoing challenge in federal law enforcement. But following proper protocols allows agencies to conduct more effective investigations while maintaining judicial oversight over the grand jury process.

Schedule Your Consultation Now