When agents from the federal government show up at a person’s home with a search warrant, it is a frightening experience. Individuals who are the subject of a federal investigation know it is a feeling of being powerless and feeling threatened. This is the government’s goal. They want people to realize government agents can go through their personal belongings and there is nothing they can do about it. There are certain things an individual should do if this happens to them.
It is possible the person being subjected to the search will not know that they’re part of a federal investigation. They need to gather as much information as possible from the federal agents in their home. It is common for the agents to leave a copy of the search warrant as well as business cards. The search warrant is the first clue about what is happening. The type of federal agent will also explain many things. If they are from the DEA, it will involve drugs. If they are from the IRS, it will deal with tax code violations and more.
Once a person’s home or business has been searched by federal agents, they should hire an attorney as soon as possible. These legal professionals will contact the federal agents directly and work to speak with the prosecutor who is assigned to the case. Establishing a line of communication is essential. It will signal to the government that the individual is willing to cooperate. Doing this could also indicate the individual believes they are innocent of any federal criminal charges.
Even if a person believes they know their rights, they should speak with legal counsel to make sure they know all of their rights. Any person who is being subject to a federal investigation needs to remember their two most important rights. They have the right to have legal counsel and the right to remain silent. Nobody should try and defend themselves to the federal agents searching their home. Federal agents are experienced at asking questions that seem innocent but are intended to get someone to admit to breaking a law. Nobody should say anything during the search and then only speak with their attorney about it.
An attorney will know how to discover the reason for the search of their clients property by federal agents. It’s important to learn why the federal agents believe there is evidence at a specific location. An attorney will also know how to find out what evidence the agents were trying to obtain. This information will be essential for planning how to move forward after the search.
Record Details of the Search
The federal government is required to comply with all the laws established in the U.S. Constitution. This includes federal agents conducting their search at any location in a reasonable manner. Should the federal agents enter a location and not announce themselves, refuse to show their warrant, and not permit the residents to get dressed or behave in other unreasonable ways, it is a problem. An attorney could use this behavior to get any evidence discovered by the federal agents thrown out. A person should write down the details of what happened during their search. This includes the number of agents involved, what was said by the agents, their treatment of the person being investigated, and more. This information should then be given by a person directly to their attorney.
Don’t Talk About the Case
When a person is under federal investigation, they shouldn’t talk to anyone about their case except their attorney. A person facing this situation will be under a significant amount of stress. They may want to speak with someone about what is happening to them. They must realize there is no way for them to know who is working with the government. This could include friends, family members, co-workers, or any person an individual may believe they can trust. It is always possible that whatever they say will be immediately reported back to the federal agents conducting the investigation.
Don’t Assume Warrant is Valid
It’s important to realize that simply because federal agents have a warrant doesn’t mean it is valid. The U.S. Constitution provides certain criteria that a search warrant must meet to be valid. A search warrant has to be based on probable cause. If it can be proven the search warrant was overly broad in its description of how the search should be conducted or wasn’t based on probable cause, it could be ruled invalid.
A person facing a federal investigation should speak to an experienced and knowledgeable criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. The attorneys at Spodek Law Group will know how to get a person answers to their important questions. They will know how to discover the scope and nature of the government’s investigation. Their goal will be to protect their client’s rights and provide them with the best possible legal defense of their case.