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Blog

Today terroristic threats are usually made via phone, email, or the US postal service. We hear the term domestic terrorism, but often associate it with a political cause. Terroristic threats can begin as a prank or a poor decision that got out of control. What the law says Under California law, the elements of the completed crime of making threats with intent to terrorize are: Willfully threatening to commit a crime that will result in death or great bodily injury to another person, Specific intent that the statement be taken as a threat, The threat was on its face and under the circumstances so unequivocal, unconditional, immediate, and specific as to convey to the person threatened a gravity of purpose and an immediate prospect of execution of the threat, The...
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You may have heard about the 50 people who were arrested following an FBI investigation called “Operation Varsity Blues.” Parents paid anywhere from $200,000 to $6.5 million for guaranteed admission into a school. Lori Loughlin and her husband, fashion designer Mossimo Giannulli, were initially charged with conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud after allegedly paying William “Rick” Singer $500,000 to get their two daughters – Isabella Rose and Olivia Jade – into the University of Southern California. How does a college cheating scandal become mail fraud? Mail fraud is such a broad crime that federal prosecutors often think of it as their bread and butter. There are three things that must be present to constitute mail fraud (or wire fraud). The statutes, Title 18 United States...
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Right now there are more than 680,000 active warrants in California.[1] Most of them are bench warrants. If you have a bench warrant, a routine traffic stop can turn into jail time. What is a bench warrant? A judge can issue a bench warrant if you violate the rules of the court. The most common reason for issuing a bench warrant is failing to appear in court when required. This includes not appearing for an arraignment, trial, sentencing, when subpoenaed to testify, or any other court date where an appearance is required. Other reasons for issuing a bench warrant include: Not paying child support in accordance with a court ruling Defaulting on a judgment Not showing up when summoned for jury duty Violating probation requirements Being indicted by a grand...
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In American’s legal system, the choice of whether or not to accept a plea deal is a question many defendants are faced with rather they are guilty or not. It is so common that 90% of all cases are resolved this way. While plea deals may seem like a reasonable shortcut to justice, other times, defendants are left wondering if they should take their chances with a trial. As you can imagine, this can be a difficult choice to make, but here are a few things to keep in mind before accepting a plea deal. But first, what is a plea deal, exactly? Plea deals are negotiated agreements between prosecutors and defendants for a reduction in sentencing. These agreements are arrived at in different ways but often involve some admission...
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Most people understand that criminal charges require a lawyer. They know that if someone is innocent, a lawyer is needed to help prove their innocence. They know that if someone is guilty, a lawyer can help avoid prosecution. However, what about if someone is guilty and wants to accept the charges, do they still need a lawyer? The short answer is, it’s their choice. No law, mandate, or statute forces a defendant to obtain a lawyer against their wishes. However, this means that the defendant will represent themselves and, therefore, will be expected to speak and act as a lawyer in the courtroom. This expectation might seem trivial for those planning to plead guilty, but before anyone decides to take the path of self-representation, here are a few things worth...
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Most of us have heard of attorney-client privilege; whether we’ve had some experience with the court system or not. Depictions of attorney-client privilege are all over movies, TV, and the news and are usually shed in a not so flattering or conflicting light. Whether portrayed by a crooked lawyer who passionately defends guilty clients; an upright lawyer with tied hands in revealing the truth; or a malicious client who attempts to manipulate the law, there are a lot of misconceptions about what attorney-client privilege really is. So, let’s separate fact from fiction and find out how far real-life confidentiality with a lawyer really goes? What is attorney-client privilege? Attorney-client privilege dates back to the 16th century and is one of the oldest forms of confidential communication within the legal system....
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