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Stockton Legal Blog

Are you accused of being part of a gang?

Just because you hang out with a group of people does not necessarily mean, legally speaking, you are part of a gang. However, if you find yourself accused of crimes traditionally associated with gangs such as weapons offenses, drug crimes, violent crimes or property crimes, authorities may attempt to enhance the potential penalties by attempting to make you part of a gang.

Whether the charges you face originate in federal or state court could affect the definition used in that attempt. There are differences in those definitions that you may need to know.

Addiction can lead to felony doctor shopping

After your injury or surgery, you probably relied on prescription pain medication just to get through the night or rest during the day so you could recover. When your prescription expired, perhaps you asked your doctor for a refill. With each refill request, your doctor may have made it more difficult for you, requiring you to come in for a checkup or suggesting you try alternate forms of pain management. You may have turned to another doctor for help.

In fact, you may have turned to several doctors. If your need for the pain medication is no longer related to your injury, you may be like over 52 million Americans who have fallen into prescription drug abuse. You may be feeding your habit by doctor shopping, which involves seeing numerous doctors to obtain prescriptions for no medical purpose.

Understanding different cocaine charges

If authorities have recently charged you with a drug-related crime, your mind may still be reeling. Understandably, you may want to understand how the charges came about, the specific allegations brought against you and what you can do to defend against them in hopes of working toward an agreeable outcome.

The desire to want this information could help you immensely throughout your case. After all, if you face cocaine-related charges in California, you are in a serious legal predicament. Fortunately, the information relating to your situation could help you find the best ways to handle your case.

Don't let a forgery or counterfeiting charge be your undoing

White collar crimes are nothing to sneeze at. If you are facing criminal charges, how you handle your case could mean the difference between going home and spending years behind bars. This is particularly true in forgery and counterfeiting cases. California laws regarding these crimes are incredibly strict. With assistance, you do not have to let forgery or counterfeiting charges be your undoing.

Whether you face charges for forgery, counterfeiting or both, prosecuting attorneys have to establish certain elements in court in order to achieve a conviction in your case. If you plead guilty, agree to a plea deal or the court convicts you, you may have to face a number of penalties.

The complexity of identity theft cases

Your personal freedom is at stake and various penalties can alter the course of the rest of your life when facing criminal charges. You understand why it is important to start working on a criminal defense strategy as soon as possible after arrest or investigation, no matter what type of charges you face. This includes criminal allegations for white-collar criminal offenses. 

White-collar crimes are largely financially motivated crimes, and most of the time they do not involve an element of violence. One of the most common types of white-collar crime is identity theft, and if convicted, the repercussions are steep. You would be wise to take your situation seriously and begin developing the most appropriate defense strategy for your individual situation. 

Online genetics testing may become evidence against you

This holiday, you may receive a unique gift if someone gives you a genetic testing kit from one of the companies offering this service. This kit may contain a small vial into which you put your saliva and send it off for analysis. After a while, you receive your results that may tell you everything from what percentage Native American blood you have to your risk of breast cancer. You can go one step further and upload your results to GEDmatch to find other people who share your DNA.

The problem is that while GEDmatch offers this free service, it also encourages law enforcement to send DNA samples they find at crime scenes so GEDmatch can connect the samples with people who share similar DNA. You may be among the many who fear this violates your civil rights.

Could prosecutors use your curiosity against you?

Surely, you have seen the commercials indicating that you could send in a DNA sample and find out about your family's lineage. Your curiosity may get the best of you. After all, most people want to know where they came from, especially since most Americans have a mixture of different ancestry.

What began as an exploration into your heritage could become a ticking time bomb if you face criminal charges. Prosecutors have begun using this information to link people to crime scenes. The state of California already credits the capture of rape and murder suspects to using this genealogy information.

What are the elements of robbery under California law?

When facing a criminal charge, it is in your best interests to understand the crime of which authorities have accused you. Even if you have a vague idea of what an allegation means, your case could hinge on a small detail of your arrest or the law. Therefore, taking the time to learn more about your predicament could make a difference in the outcome of your case.

When it comes to robbery charges, you may need to understand what actions constitute robbery, what punishment you could face if a conviction occurs and what elements could possibly lead to aggravated charges. Additionally, each state has differing laws on robbery, and you need to know how California laws may impact you.

Are you facing an investigation for payroll fraud?

Most people find themselves in need of extra money now and then. You may have taken the time to research ways in which you could help yourself and your family with your current financial situation. Of course, you only considered legitimate ways to achieve your goal of gaining additional income.

Unfortunately, someone may have learned of your additional income and accused you of committing a crime. You may not know how this situation came about, but still, you have found yourself under investigation for payroll fraud. You may not even fully understand this type of white collar crime, and even if formal charges have not yet been brought against you, it may work in your best interests to learn more about your situation.

Does the Constitution really give you the right to a lawyer?

When watching movies or television crime shows, you usually hear the police officer tell a suspect in handcuffs that he or she has certain rights. One of those rights is to an attorney. The government doesn't make this offer out of a generous spirit.

The Sixth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution guarantees you the right to have an attorney when it comes to criminal proceedings. Of course, nothing is quite that simple when it comes to the law.

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Stockton, CA 95207

Phone: 209-390-8877
Fax: 209-478-9954
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