Please Note: Izquerido Law Firm remains open and available to serve you and meet your criminal defense, DUI defense and Federal Crimes attorney needs during the COVID-19 crisis. We can meet with clients, existing or new, in person, over the phone or with your preferred video-chat application. Please call our office at 305-707-7345 to discuss your options.

Get Answers to Common Questions Now

Our clients have many of the same fears and concerns. To get started, we’ve compiled answers to many of the most frequently asked questions about Federal, Florida DUI and criminal law, covering a wide range of topics to help each client understand the potential implications and options of many legal situations.

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  • Am I eligible for the federal pretrial release program?

    Judge Working on Pretrial Release PaperworkWhat is typically known as “getting out on bail” in state criminal cases is often called “pretrial release” in federal cases. Whether you will be granted a release in your federal case will depend on a number of factors. The first and probably most important thing you can do to increase your chances of being released until your trial is to hire an experienced federal criminal defense attorney. When you work with the Izquierdo Law Firm in Miami, you can be sure that we will do everything we can to get you released.

    What the Courts Will Consider When Granting a Release

    Federal courts are generally in favor of pretrial release, particularly for first-time and nonviolent offenders. In order to have you held in jail until your trial, a federal prosecutor will have the burden of proving with clear and convincing evidence that you:

    • Are likely to flee
    • Are a danger to the community
    • Have a criminal history
    • Are most likely guilty, based on the weight of the evidence against you
    • Violated probation or parole

    In Florida, most defendants in federal drug cases are considered to be a danger to the community and are unlikely to be granted pretrial release. If the prosecutor argues that you should be held in jail, your defense attorney will have to counter the evidence presented at the detention hearing. If he is unsuccessful, you will be held in federal prison until your trial.

    Conditions of a Federal Pretrial Release Program

    If you are granted a release, it is up to the judge in your case to set the conditions. The terms of your release can include any or all of the following:

    • Executing a bond
    • Being supervised by a third-party custodian, which could be a family member
    • Looking for or retaining a job
    • Not traveling outside the local area
    • Wearing a GPS monitor
    • Submitting to regular drug testing
    • Complying with any other conditions the judge imposes

    If you violate any of the conditions set for you, your release will be revoked, and you will be sent to prison to await trial.

    Hire the Best Federal Defense Attorney You Can Afford

    Attorney Danny Izquierdo understands the importance of obtaining a pretrial release and will do all he can to fight for your freedom. It can take months for your trial to be scheduled, and sitting in prison is the worst place you could be while you wait. If you are arrested and charged with a federal crime in the Miami area, contact Danny as soon as possible as for a free case evaluation. He will also explain your chances of getting a pretrial release.

     

  • What is sexual misconduct?

    Florida Sexual Misconduct Defense Lawyer Izquierdo Law FirmIf you have been charged with sexual misconduct in Florida, you might not think it’s that big a deal. After all, how could “misconduct” be as serious as something like rape or child pornography? However, not taking this charge seriously could be a big mistake that could impact your family and your future. As a sex offense, sexual misconduct carries penalties that could haunt you for many years to come.

    Why Am I Being Charged With Sexual Misconduct?

    Florida and most other states criminalize sexual conduct between a person in a position of power and someone who is subordinate to him. When there is an imbalance of power, the law assumes that the person in the inferior position is not capable of freely consenting to sexual activity and therefore the sexual relationship is forced or coerced, which is a crime. Examples of relationships with an imbalance of power include the following:

    • Employer and employee
    • Doctor and patient
    • Correctional officer and inmate
    • Caretaker and disabled adult
    • Teacher and adult student

    Even if you believed your sexual relationship to be consensual, you could be arrested for sexual misconduct if you get involved with a subordinate and he or she decides to press charges. If you try to convince the accuser to drop the charges, you could be digging yourself an even deeper hole.

    Why You Should Take the Charge Seriously

    A conviction of any type of sex crime, including sexual misconduct, can land you on the Florida sex offender registry. This list is available to the public, so there will be no way to keep your criminal history private. Being on the registry will restrict where you can live and will probably cost you your job.

    A skilled defense attorney can build several possible defenses to a sexual misconduct charge, including offering proof of consent in order to reduce the charges and keep you off the sex offender registry.

    Do You Find Yourself In Need Of A Miami Criminal Defense Lawyer?

    If you've recently found yourself in need of an experienced criminal defense attorney in Miami you should contact me as soon as possible. Please feel free to contact me online or to call my Coral Gables office directly at 305.707.7345. You can also request my free book "The Ultimate Guide To Fighting Criminal Charges In Florida", a detailed download discussing the myths, rumors and hearsay often associated with criminal charges, what to expect from your criminal court proceedings and important steps you must take to battle your charges.

     

  • What is the difference between rape and sexual battery in Florida?

    Miami Sex Crimes Defense Attorney Izquierdo Law FirmThese terms can be used interchangeably by accusers, police officers, and even lawyers. However, in an official legal context, you will not see the word “rape” used in Florida. While your accuser and even the law enforcement officers you deal with may use the term, the legal charge will be sexual battery. We take a look at this charge and why you need to hire a criminal defense attorney to defend you if you are accused of sexual battery.

    What Falls Under a Sexual Battery Criminal Charge?

    To answer this question, it is necessary to use the language as it appears in the state statute, which is necessarily graphic. In Florida, sexual battery is defined as “oral, anal, or vaginal penetration by, or union with, the sexual organ of another or…by any other object, without the other party's consent or capacity to provide consent.” In other states, and under federal law, the term for this crime is rape. Make no mistake; if you are charged with sexual battery in Florida, that means you are being charged with rape, and you will face serious penalties. This is a felony offense and should be taken seriously. If convicted of sexual battery, you face:

    • Life in prison without parole or the death penalty if you are over 18 and the victim is under 12
    • 30 years to life in prison if you are under 18 and the victim is under 12
    • Up to 15 years in prison if the victim is 12 or older
    • Up to 30 years in prison if the victim is 12 or older, and the crime included threats or coercive acts, or the victim was physically incapacitated
    • 30 years to life in prison if you used a deadly weapon or physical force likely to cause serious bodily injury
    • Anyone convicted of sexual battery in Florida will be required to register as a sex offender.

    A possible defense to a sexual battery charge is to argue that the accuser provided consent. Under the statute, consent is defined as “intelligent, knowing, and voluntary, and does not include coerced submission. ‘Consent’ shall not be deemed or construed to mean the failure by the alleged victim to offer physical resistance to the offender.” If you believe you had consensual sex with a partner who later accuses you of sexual battery, you will need an experienced sex crimes defense attorney to make this argument in court.

    Do You Find Yourself In Need Of A Miami Criminal Defense Lawyer?

    If you've recently found yourself in need of an experienced criminal defense attorney in Miami you should contact me as soon as possible. Please feel free to contact me online or to call my Coral Gables office directly at 305.707.7345. You can also request my free book "The Ultimate Guide To Fighting Criminal Charges In Florida", a detailed download discussing the myths, rumors and hearsay often associated with criminal charges, what to expect from your criminal court proceedings and important steps you must take to battle your charges.

     

  • Could I be charged with terrorism for spreading COVID-19?

    COVID-19 Coronavirus  Izquierdo Law FirmThere is no doubt that the COVID-19 crisis has turned our world upside down, leaving us with a great deal of uncertainty about so many things. As a criminal defense law firm, we are expecting even more confusion about individuals’ rights, enforcement of executive orders, and prosecution of federal crimes related to the crisis. For example, in a recent memo to federal law enforcement agencies and U.S. attorneys, Deputy Attorney General Jeff Rosen said that individuals who intentionally spread the coronavirus could be charged with terrorism. What could this mean to the average American? We take a look.

    What Is the Charge?

    Apparently, a reaction to white supremacist groups who have encouraged their members who become infected to spread the virus, Rosen said that the “purposeful exposure or infection of others with COVID-19” could be prosecuted under federal terrorism statutes. He further explained that the virus "appears to meet the statutory definition of a 'biological agent,’” which is included in the statute’s definition of a weapon of mass destruction.

    How Could it Be Applied?

    Because the coronavirus is so highly contagious and easily spread, it is not outside the realm of possibility that someone would intentionally and maliciously try to get someone else sick. In fact, several states have already charged individuals with terrorism for deliberately coughing on people and licking packages in a store. While prosecuting these kinds of actions may make sense, where will federal agents draw the line? If a person who knows they have the virus goes to the grocery store, could he be arrested and charged with terrorism? What if a person with the virus touches another person? We simply don’t know yet how “purposeful exposure” will be interpreted by federal law enforcement officers and U.S. attorneys.

    What Should You Do If You Are Charged?

    If you or a family member is arrested on COVID-19-related federal charges, talk to a federal defense attorney as soon as possible. Federal terrorism convictions carry severe penalties, including long prison sentences and the death penalty. So much is unknown about this virus and how the courts will handle these charges, but one thing is certain—you have a right to be represented by an attorney if you are charged. Izquierdo Law Firm remains open and available to serve you during this time. Call us to arrange a video chat to discuss your case.

     

  • Can I be charged with DUI if I have a prescription for medical marijuana?

    Miami DUI Marijuana Defense Lawyer Izquierdo Law FirmThe fact that marijuana is now legal for some people in Florida might cloud the issue of driving under the influence, but it shouldn’t. The reality is that if a police officer believes your ability to safely operate a vehicle has been impaired by any substance—legal or not—you can be charged with driving under the influence. However, it can be more difficult for a prosecutor to make his case against you if you have been smoking marijuana for medicinal purposes, so you should contact a DUI defense attorney when you are arrested.

    Marijuana Laws in Florida

    In March of 2019, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed legislation to make the use of marijuana for medical purposes legal, two years after voters approved a constitutional amendment. In January of 2020, legislation was introduced in the Florida House and Senate to legalize and regulate cannabis for adults over the age of 21, so it’s possible that marijuana will be legal for everyone in the next few years. However, even if marijuana becomes legal for recreational use, you would still be breaking the law if you drive after smoking it. While some states have set legal limits for the amount of THC you can have in your blood—similar to alcohol BAC—Florida has not. The legal standard here is that you are “under the influence or affected” by THC.

    Defending a DUI for Medical Marijuana

    If you were charged with DUI, tested positive for any amount of THC, and have a prescription for medical marijuana, an experienced DUI defense attorney might be able to defend you against the charge. If we can make the case that your ability to operate your vehicle was not impaired, you could avoid a DUI conviction. To make the case, we would seek evidence from traffic cameras or eyewitnesses that you were not driving erratically.

    However, if your use of marijuana was not legal, it will be much harder to fight the charge. Much like a driver under the age of 21 who has a small amount of alcohol in his system, you could be charged with a DUI even if your driving ability was not impaired.

    Do You Need A Miami DUI Defense Laywer?

    If you find yourself charged with DUI in Miami you need to speak with an experienced DUI attorney as soon as possible. Please contact me online or call my Coral Gables office directly at 305.707.7345. You should also download my free book "A Six Pack Of Questions That Can Cause A Hangover After A DUI Arrest". This free download provides valuable information and answers to questions about DUI charges that can give you the best chance at winning your case.

     

  • Will I be charged in state or federal court for an internet crime?

    Cyber Crime Coding  Federal Crimes Attorney Izquierdo Law FirmWhich court you end up in to face cybercrime charges will all depend on who arrested you. If you were arrested by the FBI, for example, you will appear in federal court. If you were arrested by the Miami-Dade police, you will appear in a local court. Either way, you want a criminal defense attorney with experience in that court who can protect your right to due process. Attorney Daniel Izquierdo represents clients in both federal and state courts and is experienced in a range of cybercrime defenses.

    When a Cybercrime Is Likely to Be Charged by a Federal Agency

    Most states, including Florida, have laws against certain activities on the internet that mirror federal law. Therefore, if you break state law, you are likely also in violation of federal law. Common cybercrimes include:

    Child Pornography 

    Using the internet to transmit explicit images of children is a crime in Florida and at the federal level, although federal law takes a more conservative view of what constitutes pornography.

    Phishing

    Sending multiple emails with the intent to deceive recipients—also known as spam—is often a federal crime because it targets people all over the country.

    Hacking 

    Officially known as accessing stored communication, this becomes a more serious crime when the perpetrator has gained financially from the offense or has maliciously destroyed property.

    Fraud 

    Using a computer to commit any kind of fraud is illegal. If the fraud crosses state lines, you will likely face federal charges.

    Harassment 

    Cyberbullying may remain under local jurisdiction if both the bully and the victim are local.

    In general, the more serious or widespread the criminal activity is, the more likely it is that a federal agency will be involved. If the activity crosses state lines—for example, soliciting a minor to travel to Florida—it will likely be transferred to a federal agency, even if it began as a local investigation.

    Do You Find Yourself In Need Of A Miami Criminal Defense Lawyer?

    If you've recently found yourself in need of an experienced criminal defense attorney in Miami you should contact me as soon as possible. Please feel free to contact me online or to call my Coral Gables office directly at 305.707.7345. You can also request my free book "The Ultimate Guide To Fighting Criminal Charges In Florida", a detailed download discussing the myths, rumors and hearsay often associated with criminal charges, what to expect from your criminal court proceedings and important steps you must take to battle your charges.

     

  • Can strict parenting be considered domestic violence in Florida?

    Child Being Yelled at By Her Parents Domestic Violence Defense Lawyer Izquierdo LawThe short answer to this question is yes—any action can be misconstrued by law enforcement or prosecutors, especially when an estranged or former spouse makes an accusation. Florida allows for corporal punishment of children, but the law is left open to interpretation to some degree. If you have been accused of domestic or family violence for disciplining your child, your first move should be to call a defense attorney. You may be confident that you didn’t cross a line with your child, but that doesn’t mean the state will agree. Domestic violence defense attorney Daniel Izquierdo will fight for your right to discipline your child appropriately without facing criminal charges.

    What Does Florida Law Say About Appropriate Discipline?

    In defining child abuse, Florida statute 39.01(2) states, “Corporal discipline of a child by a parent or legal custodian for disciplinary purposes does not in itself constitute abuse when it does not result in harm to the child.” The key phrase here is “harm to the child.” This is where interpretation can play a role. Florida law defines harm as “physical, mental, or emotional injury,” so even if your child’s spanking did not cause physical injury, you could be accused of causing a mental or emotional injury. Generally speaking, corporal punishment should be limited to using the hand to spank the buttocks and should not cause any of the following:

    • Bruises
    • Lacerations
    • Sprains or dislocations
    • Fractures
    • Scalds or burns
    • Internal hemorrhage
    • Scarring or disfigurement
    • Emotional effects such as fear, anxiety, or withdrawal

    In Florida, domestic violence is defined as “assault, aggravated assault, battery, aggravated battery…or any criminal offense resulting in physical injury or death of one family or household member by another family or household member.” It’s easy to see how corporal punishment of a child could be seen as abuse or domestic violence. Slapping, punching, shoving, or grabbing a child—even a teenager—could be charged as abuse.

    Have You Been Accused Of Domestic Violence In Florida?

    You and your partner may not be at a good point in your relationship right now, but if your partner takes that a step further by accusing you of domestic violence, you need to fight back to protect your freedom. If you are frustrated about a domestic violence charge that is disrupting your life you need to speak with an experienced domestic violence defense attorney as soon as possible. Contact me online or call my Miami office directly at 305.707.7345.

    I also recommend that you download a free copy of our special report "He Said, She Said: Three Mistakes That Can Destroy Your Domestic Violence Case In Florida".  The sooner we talk, the sooner we will be able to help you fight the charges that could change your life forever.

     

  • Can an accuser prove a domestic violence charge without evidence?

    Evidence Puzzle Piece Izquierdo Law FirmAs with any criminal charge, it will be up to the prosecutor in a domestic violence case to prove in court that a crime was committed and that the defendant is guilty. They do this by presenting evidence. If your partner has accused you of domestic violence, you may believe that there could not be evidence that proves your guilt. However, you might be surprised by what the state presents at trial.

    What the State of Florida Will Have to Prove to Convict You

    In order to prove a domestic battery case, the state will have to provide evidence that shows one of the following:

    • The defendant actually and intentionally touched or struck another person against the will of the other.
    • The defendant intentionally caused bodily harm to another person.

    Photographic and medical evidence that the accuser was injured is not enough to prove that the defendant caused the injuries and did so intentionally. The prosecutor will have to present evidence that corroborates the accuser’s story and establishes intent.

    Evidence That May Be Used to Prove Your Guilt

    You might be confident that no such evidence exists, but prosecutors are very resourceful when it comes to gathering evidence to support a domestic violence charge. A key piece of evidence will be the accuser’s statements and testimony in court but, even if the accuser has changed his or her mind about testifying, the state may still have enough evidence to convict you. Potential sources of evidence include:

    Cell Phone Records 

    Tech experts can pull text messages, voicemail messages, and emails from your cell phone and computer. If any of the communication can be viewed as threatening or angry, this could establish a motive for the alleged attack.

    Witness Testimony 

    Investigators will talk to neighbors and others in the area at the time of the alleged abuse. They may have overheard a fight—either on the day of the alleged incident or on another occasion—that could make you look guilty.

    Security Camera Images

    Traffic, security, and porch cameras may have captured images of you coming or going from the accuser’s home. Bystanders’ cell phone videos may also provide evidence of your whereabouts and verbal or physical altercations between you and the accuser.

    Medical Evidence

    The police will photograph the accuser’s injuries when they respond to the call. Further medical exams could provide evidence of how the injuries occurred. Could the bruise have been caused by a fall, or did someone clearly grab the victim’s wrists? Medical experts will answer these questions in court.

    You cannot refute all of this evidence on your own.

    This Is Why You Need a Miami Defense Attorney as Soon as Possible

    If you have been arrested and charged with domestic violence, you need to call an attorney right away. Believing in your own innocence and being confident that there is no evidence to prove your guilt will not be enough to protect your reputation and your freedom if your case goes to trial. 

    Have You Been Accused Of Domestic Violence In Florida?

    You and your partner may not be at a good point in your relationship right now, but if your partner takes that a step further by accusing you of domestic violence, you need to fight back to protect your freedom. If you are frustrated about a domestic violence charge that is disrupting your life you need to speak with an experienced domestic violence defense attorney as soon as possible. Contact me online or call my Miami office directly at 305.707.7345.

    I also recommend that you download a free copy of our special report "He Said, She Said: Three Mistakes That Can Destroy Your Domestic Violence Case In Florida".  The sooner we talk, the sooner we will be able to help you fight the charges that could change your life forever.

     

  • I have been charged with a sex crime in Florida—should I use a public defender or hire a private attorney?

    Lawyer Shaking Hands at the First Attorney-Client Meeting Izquiredo Law FirmAs the saying goes, you get what you pay for. The more money you invest in a phone, car, or new suit, the better the quality you will get, and the happier you are going to be with it. Unfortunately, this is also true of our criminal justice system. When you are charged with something as serious as a sex crime, you want to hire the best attorney you can afford.

    If You Cannot Afford an Attorney, One Will Be Provided for You

    You should have heard these words as part of your Miranda rights when you were arrested. What it means is that the state will provide you with a defense attorney—known as a public defender—if you do not have the money to hire one yourself. This is an important right and one you should fully exercise if you do not have the money to hire an attorney. However, if you do have personal resources, you will not have the option of using a public defender. You will have to hire a private attorney.

    Advantages of Hiring a Private Attorney

    Public defenders are hard-working attorneys who do their best for their clients—there is no question about it. However, their caseloads are big and they are not able to spend a lot of time on each case. While they do often have good relationships with judges and prosecutors and may be able to secure quick plea deals, they simply don’t have the resources private attorneys have to build a strong defense. When you hire a private defense attorney, on the other hand, you will find that he is:

    Available When You Need Him 

    Private attorneys build their businesses on being responsive to clients, so they will make an effort to answer your phone calls and meet with you when you request it.

    Backed Up By Staff For Additional Support 

    Private criminal defense law firms have the resources to hire office staff who can answer questions and help clients when the attorney is not available.

    Free To Limit His Caseload 

    Unlike public defenders who have no say in how many cases they get, a private attorney will only take as many cases as he can manage. This way, he can devote more time to each client.

    Concerned About Outcomes 

    Private attorneys get new clients primarily by word of mouth. If they continually plead cases out and rarely get acquittals, they will not get new clients. Winning for his clients is essential to a successful practice.

    Unlike a public defender, who is simply assigned to you, you have options when choosing a private attorney. Ask people you trust for recommendations and take the time to ask potential attorneys questions about their firm.

    Are You Need Of A Florida Sex Crimes Defense Attorney?

    If you've been accused of a sex crime in Florida you need to speak with an experienced sex crime defense lawyer as soon as possible. Contact me online or call my Miami office at 305.707.7345 today. We will discuss options for your defense and do everything we can to protect your rights and fight the charges.

     

  • If my partner decides to drop the domestic violence charges against me, am I off the hook?

    Domestic Violence Accuser With Hand Up in the Air Izquierdo Law FirmMaybe a fight got out of hand, and a neighbor called the cops. Or maybe your partner thought you were a threat and called the police. Whatever led to the police getting involved, if they believe the accuser, and you are arrested and charged with domestic violence, it will not be easy to get out of it—even if the accuser takes their story back. That is why you must call an attorney as soon as you are arrested, even if you believe it is all a misunderstanding that will be cleared up.

    Accusers Do Not Have the Power to Drop Charges

    In the moments after an incident, the accuser holds all the power. You may be able to explain what happened and talk him or her out of calling the police, but once the call is made, it is out of the accuser’s hands. If you are arrested, it is up to the prosecutor to decide whether to pursue charges or not. Even if the accuser withdraws the complaint and refuses to testify against you, the charges could stand, and you could be facing a trial and jail time. Without an accuser, prosecutors could use the following to support their case against you:

    Evidence Collected At The Scene 

    If there are signs of a struggle or your partner is obviously injured, the police will take pictures and present this evidence to the prosecutor. Even if the accuser later explains away the evidence, the prosecutor may not believe the story.

    Witness Testimony

    Police may also talk to neighbors. If they report that they have heard shouting or seen signs of fighting at your home, this will be strong evidence against you, even without a statement from your partner.

    Criminal Record 

    If you have previous arrests on your record or have had complaints filed against you in the past for any violent crime, prosecutors will assume that you are capable of domestic violence, regardless of your partner recanting the complaint.

    Without an experienced Florida domestic violence defense attorney on your case, you won’t have a prayer of getting the charges reduced or dropped.

    Have You Been Accused Of Domestic Violence In Florida?

    You and your partner may not be at a good point in your relationship right now, but if your partner takes that a step further by accusing you of domestic violence, you need to fight back to protect your freedom. If you are frustrated about a domestic violence charge that is disrupting your life you need to speak with an experienced domestic violence defense attorney as soon as possible. Contact me online or call my Miami office directly at 305.707.7345.

    I also recommend that you download a free copy of our special report "He Said, She Said: Three Mistakes That Can Destroy Your Domestic Violence Case In Florida".  The sooner we talk, the sooner we will be able to help you fight the charges that could change your life forever.