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Rolling Meadows, IL defense attorney

There are many consequences that can come with breaking the law. Depending on the crime, you could face community service, probation, fines, restitution, and in some cases, jail time. Another consequence of certain crimes can be asset forfeiture, where the government takes your belongings if they believe they are connected to a crime. This can be problematic, especially if you are innocent of the charges you face. 

Both the state and the federal government can seize assets if they believe they were acquired in illegal ways. According to the Illinois State Police and the U.S. Department of Justice, the state of Illinois has taken more than $319 million in assets from citizens since 2005, while the federal government has seized more than $404 million during the same period. If you are facing a seizure of your assets, it is important to have a criminal defense attorney by your side who will fight for you.

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Arlington Heights criminal defense attorney Miranda rightsIn 1966, the United States Supreme Court made a landmark ruling in the case of Miranda v. Arizona when it made a decision on how suspects are to be informed of their constitutional rights when they are arrested on felony or misdemeanor charges. Ernesto Miranda was arrested in 1963 on suspicion of kidnapping and rape. After a long interrogation, Miranda confessed to the charges and signed a statement that his confession was made willingly and knowingly and that he understood his legal rights. When his case went to trial, his lawyers discovered that he had not, in fact, been informed of his constitutional rights to remain silent, to be represented by a lawyer, and to have that lawyer present during the interrogation. This Supreme Court ruling is one of the most famous cases in U.S. history, and it has changed the way arrests and interrogations have been handled ever since.

Miranda Rights Are Constitutional Rights

Because of Miranda v. Arizona, police officers are required to inform you of your rights before they begin an interrogation. Though some police departments may use different wording, the basis of the statements must be the same. Most police departments will use a version of the following: “You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to an attorney. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be appointed to you. Do you understand the rights that I have just read to you?” It must be established that the suspect is aware of his or her rights before any interrogation can occur.

Misconceptions About Miranda Rights

The point of the Miranda Warning is to inform suspects of the rights that are granted to them by the United States Constitution. This includes the right to protection against self-incrimination and the right to legal counsel. Some people have misunderstandings about their Miranda rights and what that means for their criminal cases.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_Untitled-design-15.jpgUsing cell phone records to track a suspect’s movement and activity is a frequent technique used by law enforcement when conducting a criminal investigation. However, change appears to be on the horizon as members of the United States Supreme Court seem to indicate that prolonged cell phone tracking without a warrant amounts to an unreasonable search and violates an alleged defendant’s right to privacy.

What Has Changed?

A previous Supreme Court ruling indicated that citizens could expect no privacy from making calls from a landline or for checks they wrote on a bank account; it is widely known and expected that calls or transactions for these are kept for a number of business purposes. This latest challenge seems to indicate a shift from that position.

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Illinois criminal defense lawyerCommunity service can serve as a viable alternative to more serious criminal consequences. However, one must be willing to meet all the requirements of their community service conditions. Failure to do so can invalidate the agreement and may ultimately result in a default on your charges. Learn more about fulfilling your community service requirements, and what you can do if you experience any troubles along the way.

Where to Complete Your Community Service

Valid community service hours can only be completed at non-profit organizations. Further, the organization must be willing to accept you as a volunteer; this can often be the most challenging and frustrating aspect of completing your community service requirements. Not every location will have an opening, some have set limits on the number of hours that they accept volunteers, and there may be additional restrictions on where you can volunteer. A few places to look might include:

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Illinois criminal defense lawyerIf you have ever had your Miranda rights read to you, then you are familiar with the phrase, “Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law,” but did you know that this applies to more than just your words? Everything from camera footage obtained at the scene to the items in your pocket, and right on down to your social media account can be mined for information. Yes, that is correct: your social media account can be used as evidence in a criminal charges case. Worse yet, it could mean the difference between a dismissal and a guilty verdict. Learn more about protecting yourself with help from the following.

Direct Evidence of a Crime

One of the absolute worst things you can do on social media is broadcast your crime, yet many have done it. A group of teens that raped a young girl, the man that was arrested after he posted a video of himself drinking and driving, and the recent shooting of an elderly man were all caught on Facebook live. All these situations, and many others can be used as direct evidence of a crime. Of course, the information on your account does not have to be quite as blatant.

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