Fargo Federal Crime Defense Lawyer - Sand Law North Dakota
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Fargo Federal Crime Defense Lawyer

You must realize the penalties are harsh if you’re facing federal charges. You might have to spend years in jail and pay hefty fines. You need a lawyer who will protect your rights and provide the most effective defense possible.

Sand Law attorneys will do just that. We’ll tell you what to expect through every step of your case. Our legal team will also be here to answer all of your questions. Please don’t hesitate to schedule a free consultation by contacting us online or calling 701-609-1510.

What is a Federal Crime?

A federal crime is a criminal offense that violates federal law. Several federal agencies investigate these crimes, such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). Other agencies, such as the United States Department of Justice (DOJ), prosecute them. Federal crimes can range from white-collar crimes like embezzlement and fraud to violent crimes like murder and assault.


Terrorism is defined as the use of violence or intimidation in the pursuit of political aims. It is one of the most severe federal crimes and is investigated by the FBI and other federal agencies. Examples of terrorism include bombings, hijacking a mass transit vehicle such as an airplane, biological attacks, etc.


Counterintelligence crimes include espionage, sabotage, and other covert activities that may threaten national security. The FBI is responsible for investigating and prosecuting counterintelligence cases. Examples of counterintelligence activities include the theft of military secrets or sensitive government information by foreign agents or hackers.


Cybercrime involves criminal activities carried out over the internet or other digital networks. Examples include computer hacking, identity theft, online fraud, and the distribution of malicious software. Penalties for these crimes can range from fines to lengthy prison sentences.

Corruption of the public

Corruption of the public involves bribery, embezzlement, and other forms of illegal activities. Prosecutors typically pursue these charges against elected officials. These activities can include the misuse of public funds or resources, the acceptance of bribes or kickbacks, and other forms of corruption that undermine the integrity of public institutions. The FBI and other federal agencies investigate and prosecute cases of public corruption.

Civil rights violations

Civil rights crimes involve violating an individual’s constitutional rights, including the rights to free speech, due process, and equal protection under the law. These crimes can include police brutality, hate crimes, and other forms of discrimination that violate federal law.

The FBI and other federal agencies investigate civil rights violations, and penalties for these crimes can include imprisonment and fines. Examples of civil rights violations include the murder of George Floyd by a police officer in Minneapolis and the violence in Charlottesville, VA, in 2017.

Violent crimes

Violent crimes involve using physical force or threats of violence against individuals or property. Examples include the following:

  • Assaulting a federal officer.
  • Domestic violence (if it involves crossing state lines).
  • Hiring someone to kill another.

Theft of specific items

Misuse of public funds can also fall under the category of a federal theft crime. Suppose a governmental entity tasks someone with the safekeeping of those funds. If that person deposits that money in their personal account or converts it into another currency and keeps it, those could be considered federal crimes.

Immigration crimes

Immigration crimes involve violations of federal immigration laws, such as entering the United States illegally or overstaying a visa. These crimes can also involve document fraud, human trafficking, and other offenses related to smuggling people across international borders. Penalties for these crimes can include imprisonment and deportation.

Examples of immigration crimes include:

  • The illegal crossing of the U.S.-Mexico border.
  • The exploitation of undocumented workers.
  • The smuggling of people across international borders.

White collar crimes

White collar crimes are nonviolent crimes that typically involve financial fraud. Examples include embezzlement, money laundering, securities fraud, and others.

What Organizations Handle Federal Crime Investigations?

The primary federal agencies responsible for investigating federal crimes are the FBI, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). These agencies have the authority to investigate a wide range of federal crimes and work closely with the DOJ to prosecute those who are charged with these offenses.

Penalties for Federal Crimes

The penalties for federal crimes can vary widely depending on the offense and the severity of the crime. Here are a few examples:

  • Terrorism: Life imprisonment or the death penalty and a fine of as much as $2 million.
  • Counterintelligence: Imprisonment of up to 10 years in prison.
  • Cybercrime: Up to 20 years in prison and fines of up to $250,000
  • Corruption of the public: Penalties vary greatly, including the potential for decades in prison and fines in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.
  • Civil rights violations: Up to life imprisonment, depending on the circumstances of the crime.

What’s the Difference Between a State and Federal Crime?

The main difference is how they’re investigated and prosecuted. Federal agents investigate federal crimes. U.S. Attorneys prosecute them. You’ll appear in federal court if you’re charged with a federal crime. If convicted, you’ll go to federal prison.

State or city attorneys prosecute state crimes, and various agencies investigate them. These can include police officers, county sheriffs, and others. You’ll go to state prison if convicted.

Understanding the Collateral Consequences of a Federal Conviction

Beyond the immediate legal penalties, a federal conviction can have lasting implications. These collateral consequences can include loss of voting rights, difficulty in securing employment or housing, loss of professional licenses, and potential immigration consequences for non-citizens.

Recognizing these broader implications is crucial for those facing federal charges, as they can significantly impact one’s life long after serving any sentence. It underscores the importance of seeking experienced legal representation to mitigate potential consequences.

Working with a Federal Crime Defense Attorney

If you’re facing federal criminal charges, it’s essential you work with an experienced federal criminal defense attorney. A skilled lawyer can provide guidance and support throughout the legal process, helping you understand your rights and options and building a solid defense on your behalf. They can also work to negotiate with prosecutors, potentially reducing the severity of the charges or the penalties you face.

When choosing a lawyer, it is crucial to look for someone with extensive experience in federal criminal law and a track record of success in defending clients against federal charges. You should also look for someone familiar with the specific federal agency or agencies involved in your case and the federal court system.

Sand Law attorneys have that experience, and we’re ready to go to work on your defense. Call 701-609-1510 or use our online contact form for a free case review.