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Criminal Courts Bar Association

Federal Crimes

Respected Criminal Defense Attorney with Extensive Experience Defending Cases in the Central District of California

Federal prosecutors prosecute far fewer cases than district attorneys, which only prosecute cases in state court. This gives federal prosecutors more time to investigate each case, which means they are always well-prepared. If you face charges in the District Court for the Central District of California, you need an attorney with that same level of sophistication, skill and experience. At the Killedjian Law Corporation, we have more than 20 years of experience defending clients in state and federal court. Regardless of the nature of the crimes you’ve been charged with, Attorney Melanie Killedjian will provide you with the aggressive representation needed to secure the best result possible.

The Difference Between State and Federal Crimes

The criminal justice system is made up of state and federal courts. Most crimes are prosecuted at the state level by district attorneys. However, federal prosecutors also have the ability to bring an indictment. Typically, federal prosecutors are more selective in the cases they handle, preferring to prosecute more serious crimes, as well as those that are complex or involve conduct that occurred in multiple states.

One of the primary differences between the state and federal criminal justice systems is how prosecutors file charges against a person. In the state court system, prosecutors can use their discretion in filing a complaint. However, in the federal system, most cases must first be presented to a grand jury.

A grand jury is a group of citizens that hears the prosecutor’s case. Neither the defendant nor their attorney is present, and, in most cases, targets of a grand jury indictment are unaware that they are under investigation. Thus, by the time you find out that you are facing federal charges, prosecutors have already built a case against you and presented evidence to a grand jury, which found that there was probable cause to believe you committed the charged offenses. This can make defending against federal crimes difficult because the prosecutors have a significant head start.

In some cases, however, subjects of a federal investigation are made aware they are under investigation. In these situations, it is imperative to reach out to an experienced federal criminal defense attorney as soon as possible, as an attorney may be able to intervene in the investigatory process to prevent prosecutors from seeking an indictment.

Types of Federal Crimes

Federal prosecutors have the authority to charge most types of crimes. However, in reality, they typically only prosecute the most complex and serious cases. Some of the most common charges filed in Los Angeles federal court include:

Are Federal Crimes More Serious than State Crimes?

Yes, generally, federal crimes are more serious than crimes prosecuted in state court. There are a few reasons for this. First, federal prosecutors typically allow state prosecutors to handle less serious crimes. For example, the federal government is unlikely to get involved in a small-scale drug dealing operation but may pick up a case involving allegations of drug trafficking. Second, federal judges have less discretion when it comes to sentencing because they must consult the United States Sentencing Guidelines. Third, due to the nature of the investigatory process, prosecutors bringing federal crimes are typically much better prepared, meaning there may be less room for a plea bargain.

Are You Facing Federal Criminal Charges in the Central District of California?

If you are under investigation or were recently indicted for a federal crime, the Killedjian Law Corporation is here to help. Attorney Melanie Killedjian has more than two decades of experience handling all types of federal criminal cases. She is an effective negotiator who is often able to prevent her clients from being indicted. However, as an experienced litigator in state and federal court, she is capable of defending even the most complex cases at trial. To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation with Attorney Melanie Killedjian at the Killedjian Law Corporation, call (818) 986-0888 today. You can also connect with us through our online contact form.

Client Reviews
I was referred to Melanie by a good friend of mine with whom she assisted in the past. This friend gave me nothing but glowing reviews of her and somehow, still managed to undersell how great Melanie is. From the day I made my first call to her, to the first time meeting her face to face (which was the very next day, so I'll add she's very accessible and prompt), until the very end she made it seemingly effortless on my part. She handled everything from beginning to end. Her professionalism was very assuring, and put my worries to rest. I went in her office feeling defeated and overwhelmed, fast forward to my final hearing and I left feeling victorious and overjoyed. Melanie, thank you for all your help! The services rendered and the peace of mind she gave me cannot be matched! Louie G.
I cannot say how grateful my family and I are to ms. Killedjian. The case she took on was very complex and multilayered. I fired two top lawyers before trusting Ms. Killedjian with my future. She remained confident and worked diligently for almost two years. She never changed or added to her fee. She worked with my immigration attorney to make sure I would not face immigration consequences. Ms. Killedjian law expertise and belief in her client got my case dismissed. We are so thankful to Ms. Killedjian and will forever remember how hard she fought for justice!! V.Y.
I just want to say that Melanie came HIGHLY recommended to me and she was the BEST decision I made for my criminal case. Melanie was so helpful, informative, straight forward, kind and always did everything she said she was going to do. She always responded to me contacting her and she always used the word "we" when communicating, as if "we" were in this thing together! I am so grateful for her professionalism and her approach. She was able to get my original severe charges dropped and i was given a minor charge because of how she presented the facts and evidence at hand. Shes amazing! So, if you're reading this and need not just a good attorney but a GREAT one, contact her! You will not regret it! Thank you Melanie for everything you did and continue to do! You're a life saver! Stacey S.
Melanie is amazing! She was able to help me with two felony charges in two different court systems simultaneously with results that far exceeded my expectations of what I thought was even possible. She refused to settle for anything less than the best possible outcome and has given me my complete freedom back. It honestly seems like she was able to work magic! There is no doubt that she knows what she is doing and knows how to get results. I was very selective in choosing a lawyer and she was definitely the right choice. She is kind, caring, compassionate, understanding, positive and supportive in every way. It has truly been a pleasure working with her and her delightful assistant, Elen. I would highly recommend her to anyone in need of an exceptional defense attorney. Bradley S.