The State and Federal Law

US Federal Criminal Law – What You Need To Know

The Constitution of the United States, treaties, executive orders, federal statutes as well as court decisions stipulate and define the unique political and legal relationship between the United States of America and the Indian tribes. Federal laws give the Justice Department main jurisdiction over felonies that take place on Indian lands.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation usually abbreviated (FBI) and the office of the United States Attorneys are the main federal law enforcers which are responsible for investigations and prosecutions of top serious felony crimes which take place in the Indian country including aggravated assaults, homicides,  sex offenses, and embezzlement or large scale theft.

There are other federal law enforcement agencies that are also operational in Indian country; for instance, the Drug Enforcement Administration which investigates and prosecutes drug offenses, the Bureau of Tobacco, Alcohol, United States Marshals Service (which is responsible for fugitives and sex offense-related investigations), Firearms and Explosives (which deals with firearms offenses and arson), and Customs and Border Protection (as the name suggests this agency deals with border offenses). Less serious misdemeanor cases are normally investigated and litigated by tribal law enforcement agencies. For more information contact a successful Georgetown criminal defense lawyer in the state of Texas.

The US tribal courts and tribal police handle most of criminal offenses which occur in Indian country and frequently do so in appropriate manner given the needs, resources and priorities of every particular tribal community.

Breakdown of Law Enforcement Agencies Under US Federal Criminal laws

Some cases are much simpler, while others will include many steps. It is always advisable to consult a lawyer to understand better how the information presented in this article applies to your case.

Important steps in the federal criminal process:

  1. Investigation
  2. Charging
  3. Initial Hearing/Arraignment
  4. Discovery
  5. Plea Bargaining
  6. Preliminary Hearing
  7. Pre-Trial Motions
  8. Trial
  9. Post-Trial Motions
  10. Sentencing
  11. Appeal