Have you been charged with a federal crime in Kansas? For more than 20 years, criminal defense attorney James R. Pratt has fought to defend those who have been charged with serious crimes, including those at the federal level. These charges are serious and can come with severe penalties, so turn to a lawyer who has the right experience to defend your rights and your freedom.
Most criminal charges are filed in state courts by local or state authorities. Some cases, however, may involve federal agencies and federal charges.
Federal courts handle federal charges, and the penalties alleged offenders face in these cases are often much more severe than punishment for state-level crimes. Another significant difference is that the federal agencies that handle these cases have far greater resources with which to conduct investigations than their state counterparts.
If you were arrested or believe you might be under investigation for any kind of federal crime in Kansas, it is critical that you not say anything to authorities until you have legal representation. Contact Pratt Law, LLC as soon as possible.
James R. Pratt has more than two decades of legal experience and is admitted to the United States District Court for the District of Kansas. You can have him review your case as soon as you call (316) 262-2600 or contact him online to schedule a free consultation.
Federal Drug Crimes
Federal drug charges are one of the most common kinds of federal crimes. Controlled substance offenses can lead to federal charges, such as those involving a large quantity of drugs or money, those occurring on federal property, or those being investigated by a federal agent.
The potential penalties for federal drug crimes typically depend on how a controlled substance has been classified under the Controlled Substances Act and the amount of drugs found. Certain offenses carry mandatory minimum prison sentences, and fines can be millions of dollars.
Some of the most common federal drug crimes people are charged within Kansas include but are not limited to:
- Distributing materials
Certain crimes listed above, such as drug trafficking, almost always result in federal charges because the alleged criminal activity involves transportation of a controlled substance across state lines.
Federal Fraud and White-Collar Crimes
A white-collar crime usually refers to a financial offense. Most of these crimes include an element of fraud.
Mail Fraud — A common federal crime is mail fraud. Federal law prohibits a person from using or intending to use the United States Postal Service in connection with any scheme to defraud or obtain money or property through pretenses.
Bank Fraud — A person commits bank fraud when they obtain money, assets, or other property owned by a financial institution.
Money Laundering — A person commits a money laundering crime when they attempt to conceal the identity of the source of sums of money, or structure cash transactions to avoid legal reporting requirements. The United States Code prohibits money laundering.
Embezzlement — When a person steals money or property which they were entrusted to protect, they commit the federal offense of embezzlement.
Federal Computer Crimes
Multiple federal laws prohibit various computer crimes. The Computer Fraud and Abuse Act establishes the following types of prohibited activity:
- Obtaining national security information
- Accessing a computer and gathering information
- Trespassing in a government computer
- Accessing a computer to defraud and obtain value
- Intentionally damaging through knowing transmission
- Recklessly damaging by intentional access
- Negligently causing damage and loss by intentional access
- Trafficking in passwords
- Extortion by computer
The Wiretap Act, also known as Title III, prohibits any person from illegally intercepting or disclosing or using unlawfully intercepted material. The Watergate burglars were prosecuted under this act.
Wire fraud , which is fraud “transmitted by means of wire, radio, or television communication in interstate or foreign commerce,” is another common federal computer crime charge. Other possible charges could involve unlawful access to stored communications, identity theft, access device fraud, the CAN-SPAM Act, and communication interference.
Federal Conspiracy and RICO Charges
Congress passed the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) with the purpose of eradicating organized crime in the United States. The act makes it a crime to use or invest any income derived from racketeering activity or unlawful debt to establish, acquire, or operate an enterprise engaged in or impacting interstate commerce.
The RICO Act also prohibits acquiring or maintaining an interest in, or control of, any enterprise engaged in or affecting interstate commerce through racketeering activity or unlawful debt, as well as being employed by or associated with an enterprise engaged in or affecting interstate or foreign commerce to participate in a pattern of racketeering activity or unlawful debt. Conspiracies to commit any of the violations are also punishable under the RICO Act.
Further, the act defines a pattern of racketeering activity as requiring at least two actions of racketeering activity. One of the activities must have occurred after the RICO Act became effective.
Racketeering activity is defined under 18 USC § 1961(1) as including:
- Any act or threat involving murder, kidnapping, gambling, arson, robbery, bribery, or extortion
- Dealing in obscene matter
- Dealing in a controlled substance or listed chemical chargeable under state law and punishable by imprisonment for more than one year or any act indictable under Title 18 of the USC
The term also includes:
1) Any act indictable under Title 29 of the USC
2) Any offense involving fraud connected with a case under Title 11
3) Any act indictable under the Currency and Foreign Transactions Reporting Act
4) Any act indictable under the Immigration and Nationality Act
5) Any act indictable under any provision listed in USC § 2332b(g)(5)(B)
Contact a Kansas Federal Criminal Defense Lawyer Now
Do you believe that you could be under investigation or were you already arrested for a federal crime in Wichita or a surrounding area of Kansas? Do not try to explain your actions or defend yourself to authorities without first hiring an experienced criminal defense attorney.
Pratt Law, LLC aggressively defends individuals charged with all kinds of federal offenses in Kansas, and attorney James R. Pratt will fight zealously to get your criminal charges reduced or dismissed. Call (316) 262-2600 or contact us online to schedule a confidential consultation to discuss your rights and legal options.