At Goldman Wetzel, our criminal defense attorneys believe no one should have to face accusations, arrest, or an arraignment on their own. If you stand accused of racketeering or another federal offense, we are here to help. Our racketeering lawyers in Pinellas County, FL can ensure your rights remain protected, develop a strong defense strategy in your case, and fight for the best outcome possible.
In Pinellas County, call us today by dialing 727-828-3900. We can discuss our services for free, or we can immediately go to work protecting your rights during interrogation or representing you during your arraignment.
Understanding Racketeering and the Charges You May Face
Many people relate racketeering crimes to organized crime, the Mafia, and outlaw biker gangs. While all these groups could certainly face charges under federal racketeering laws, they also commonly apply to:
- Street gangs
- Drug cartels
- Corrupt agencies
- Businesses providing a “false front” for illegal activity
Federal law — the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) — allows the government to file charges against and prosecute the leaders of these organizations instead of just the individuals those leaders enlisted to commit crimes on their behalf. To charge someone under RICO, prosecutors do not have to prove the person accused committed an individual crime. They must instead prove:
- They belong to an organization; and
- That organization regularly commits an illegal activity listed in the RICO Act
The RICO Act includes several dozen offenses that may occur under the auspice of an illegal business or use a legitimate organization as a front. This list of crimes includes:
- Mail fraud
- Wire fraud
- Drug dealing
- Other serious offenses
If you have been arrested or charged on suspicion of racketeering or a related allegation in Pinellas County, FL, you do not want to face a Federal Judge on your own. All your court appearances will be in the Middle District of Florida, with a U.S. Attorney prosecuting. Let us review your case and represent you through this process. Our racketeering lawyers in Pinellas County, FL will fight for a more favorable outcome in your case.
Racketeering Convictions Usually Mean Time in Federal Prison
If you face federal racketeering charges, you must take them seriously. A conviction in one of these cases will likely lead to a Federal Judge sentencing you to time behind bars in federal prison. This is why we recommend enlisting our help on your case as early as possible.
Before handing down a sentence, the judge will consider:
- Federal Sentencing Guidelines; and
- Mandatory minimum sentencing laws; and
- Maximum penalties allowable by law
The Federal Sentencing Guidelines consider several factors before offering a baseline of where the sentence should begin. This includes:
- The nature of the crime; and
- The severity of the individual offense; and
- Any prior convictions
Under federal law, the maximum penalty you could receive for a racketeering charge is 20 years behind bars unless the crime is serious enough to call for a higher maximum. You could receive life in prison, for example, for ordering someone to commit a murder or participating in another type of violent crime.
The Goldman Wetzel Attorneys Take on Every Case as a Team
Goldman Wetzel attorneys work together on every case we handle. This gives you the unique experience of having two distinct points of view and strengths both working together on your defense.
Attorney Summer Goldman worked in the prosecutor’s office and can help us analyze your case from the U.S. Attorney’s point of view. Attorney Maribeth Wetzel began her career as a criminal defense attorney and continues to represent those facing serious legal challenges today. Together, they can build a strong case for a more favorable outcome in your case.
Let Our Criminal Defense Lawyers Go to Work on Your Pinellas County Racketeering Case
The Goldman Wetzel team encourages you to reach out to us as soon as you realize you might be in trouble. If we can go to work on your case before you face charges, this gives us the opportunity to build a strong enough defense to present evidence and prevent them from ever indicting you. We might be able to stop your case before it even begins.
If this is not possible, we can also:
- Accompany you to interrogations
- Explain and protect your rights
- Represent you during court appearances
- Develop and implement a strong defense strategy
Especially where RICO — and its 35 crimes — are concerned, every case we handle can be dramatically different. We have to analyze the facts of your individual case and develop a unique approach to defending you against the allegations or charges. Some ways we may be able to do that include:
- Preventing charges or getting charges dropped
- Getting prosecutors to reduce the nature or severity of the charges
- Negotiating a plea deal
- Requesting a probated sentence
- Going to court and fighting for a not guilty verdict
We can help you fight the serious accusations you face. Call us today at 727-828-3900 and let us get to work on your case right away.
Talk to Our Racketeering Lawyers in Pinellas County, FL
The racketeering lawyers in Pinellas County, FL from Goldman Wetzel understand that you need both compassionate support and aggressive representation when faced with serious accusations of a federal crime. If you have been arrested or charged with a RICO violation in Pinellas County, FL, call us today at 727-828-3900. We can review your case and go to work on your defense.