How to Secure Your Release from Custody Pending Trial in Federal Court
When someone is arrested and charged with crimes in federal court, it is almost always a very serious matter. Federal court is not as relaxed in how it handles deadlines and procedures as some state courts may be. For these reasons, it is imperative to work closely with an attorney who has many years of experience in the federal system, navigating the twists and turns of the court. One of the more delicate issues to handle is that of remaining in custody pending a trial. At Bruce L. Udolf, P.A., we are here to help. It is always better to fight your case from outside the prison walls than from within. Here are some basic considerations on how to secure your release pending trial.
The Government is Under a Time Crunch
First, pursuant to the Speedy Trial Act of 1974, federal prosecutors must meet certain strict deadlines or face a dismissal of the charges. These deadlines are as follows:
- 30 days from arrest or service of summons Must file information or get indictment
- 70 days from indictment or information Trial must commence
There are many other complex rules and exceptions that apply, and the defendant can always waive speedy trial rights and take more time in preparation for trial by taking certain actions; however, the general rule is that the government cannot keep you sitting in jail waiting to be brought to trial indefinitely. There must be a fairly swift administration of justice once an arrest is made.
Bond in Federal Court
Now, bond is how the government attempts to ensure that someone who is released while awaiting trial actually shows up. The more serious the crime and more likely the person is to flee the jurisdiction, the higher the bond amount will probably be. The idea is to give the person some incentive to return – if nothing else, to keep their money.
Bond Reduction Hearings
Under the U.S. Constitution, bond may not be excessive and may not be used punitively or as punishment. Instead, bond is there to protect the public and secure a defendant’s presence at trial. So, for that reason, it is fairly customary to file a motion for reduction of bond early in the case. An attorney can use a number of factors to argue that the bond should be reduced in order to secure a person’s release pending trial. In the best-case scenario, the defendant is released on his or her “own recognizance.” This simply means they are allowed to get out of jail on their word that they will appear, and without the need to pay money. This is rare in felony cases, but it can happen, depending on how long a defendant has been detained before trial.
Have an Attorney Help Get You Out of Custody Before Trial
You stand a far better chance of being released or having your bond drastically reduced if you work with a skilled Fort Lauderdale federal crime lawyer early on in your case. Give Bruce L. Udolf, P.A. a call today, and let us get started on your case right away.