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What Are Examples of Federal Crimes?

What Are Examples of Federal Crimes?

Federal crimes are criminal offenses that violate federal law or the U.S. Constitution. Unlike other crimes which are prosecuted under state laws, federal cases go to a district court. 

Most federal crimes carry stiff penalties. Seeking out a federal criminal defense lawyer when charged with a federal offense can help you overcome those charges, but what can you expect when you’re charged? Here is a look at how an offense qualifies as a federal crime, and some common examples of federal criminal offenses.

When is a Crime a Federal Offense?

Many criminal offenses are prosecutable under both state and federal laws. In such cases, federal laws overrule state laws. Some crimes are not punishable under state laws but are prosecutable under federal laws.

Federal laws have a broad range so federal prosecutors can take up many criminal cases at the federal level. In most cases, an offense can is a federal crime if it meets one of the following criteria:

  • The crime took place on federal property, such as an illegal activity in a national park

  • The crime involved federal officers such as personnel from the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA)

  • The crime violated a specific federal law, such as laws about IRS tax requirements

  • The offense involved fraudulent activities on the purported behalf of a government agency, such as fraud committed while falsely representing the Social Security Administration (SSA)

  • The defendant moved across state lines

  • The crime involved defendants from multiple states

  • The crime itself took place across several states

Penalties for Federal Offenses

The penalties for federal crimes depend on the nature of the charges. Some federal offenses such as those related to drugs carry harsh penalties. Others may come with lighter punishments. Often, your penalties will consist of prison time, a hefty fine, and a criminal record that may impact your ability to work, vote, and seek housing. 

Many landlords, banks, and employers perform background checks before working with others. Because of this, you may be rejected because of the charges on your record. That can impact all areas of your life. 

Examples of Federal Offenses

When you’re accused of a crime, you may be concerned about who will prosecute you and what you can do about your charges. Some common examples of federal offenses include:

  • Drug possession or trafficking – You can be prosecuted at both state and federal levels for such an offense.

  • Counterfeiting bills – This is a federal-only offense as the federal government is responsible for printing money.

  • Kidnapping – Kidnapping incidents frequently involve transporting the victim across state lines, which qualifies it as a federal offense.

  • Illegal Immigration – The U.S. government is responsible for overseeing border immigration activities. This is why illegal immigration is regarded as a federal crime.

  • Wire Fraud – Wire fraud involves any fraudulent activity used to defraud another person for monetary or personal gain.

Some other examples of federal crimes include offenses related to child pornography, mail fraud, IRS tax violations, copyright crimes, espionage, and failure to pay child support.

Talk to a Federal Criminal Defense Lawyer 

Federal crimes carry harsh penalties and some crimes can result in a life prison sentence. This is why it is critically important to get experienced legal help as soon as you face a federal charge.

Here at Chris Lewis & Associates P.C., we believe that everyone has a full and fair right to defend themselves. Our Dallas federal criminal defense lawyers work with you to create a strong defense against the charges you face.

Call us today at 214-984-3113 to discuss your case with our lawyers. You can also visit our website to reach us.

About the Author:

Chris Lewis and Associates P.C.

Often included among the best criminal defense attorneys in Texas, Attorney Chris Lewis provides clients with aggressive, effective, and seasoned criminal defense. In short, he gets results and gets them often. As a result, he has received the respect of judges, clients, and fellow lawyers for his ethics and excellent practice in Texas. ... View full business profile here: Chris Lewis and Associates P.C.

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