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Fort Lauderdale Criminal Defense Lawyer

Fort Lauderdale Criminal Defense Lawyer
Fort Lauderdale Criminal Defense Lawyer

Fort Lauderdale Criminal Defense Attorney

Facing a criminal charge of any kind can be a life-changing experience, especially when it is the first time you have ever been accused of a crime. If you are guilty of breaking the law, it’s natural to worry about the worst possible penalties you could face in sentencing and the long-term effects a criminal record could have on every aspect of your life. On the other hand, if you are innocent and have been wrongfully accused of a crime you did not commit, it can feel as though the entire system is pitted against you and that your situation is hopeless.

Experienced Criminal Defense Representation for Fort Lauderdale, FL, Clients

Prya Murad Law, LLC, offers compassionate and responsive criminal defense counsel to clients in the Fort Lauderdale area and surrounding communities. Attorney Prya Murad and her team take time to carefully evaluate each client’s unique situation, determining the best legal strategies available to them. Our goal in every criminal defense case we accept is to help our client avoid conviction if possible and mitigate their penalty if necessary.

Know Your Rights After Arrest

Every citizen of the United States is protected by the Constitution, and two amendments come into play in every criminal case. First is the Fifth Amendment, which protects against self-incrimination. If you are placed under arrest, you have no legal obligation to answer any questions from the police or say anything at all. You have the right to remain silent, and it’s best to exercise this right until you can speak with an attorney you can trust. Second is the Sixth Amendment, which guarantees your right to legal representation in a criminal case.

Legal representation is prohibitively expensive to some Americans, and it’s natural for someone accused of a crime to assume that they cannot hire private defense counsel to represent them in their case. However, if you are unable to afford a private defense lawyer or if you simply do not wish to pay for one, you have the right to legal counsel at no cost to you from a public defender. The criminal court will appoint a public defender as your personal defense attorney, and their representation does not cost you anything.

This may seem like a prudent option, but if you have the means to do so, hiring a private Fort Lauderdale criminal defense attorney offers a much higher level of legal counsel than you could expect from even the best public defender. While the majority of public defenders in Florida are experienced and capable attorneys who do their best for their clients, they are typically responsible for handling multiple cases at a time. This means that a public defender cannot offer any one client much in the way of individual attention. If you opt to have a public defender represent you, they may only be able to offer an hour or two each day to your case.

When you choose Prya Murad Law, LLC, to represent your defense, you will have instant access to a dedicated legal advocate. Our firm maintains a light caseload to ensure that every client we represent has full access to our team as needed. In addition, we will be available to answer your questions, address your concerns, and will provide updates throughout all stages of your criminal case. Ultimately, hiring a private Fort Lauderdale criminal defense attorney can make a tremendous difference not only in the outcome of your criminal case but also in the rest of your life.

Criminal Defense Cases Handled by Prya Murad Law, LLC

Any criminal conviction in Florida not only entails a host of penalties assigned by the judge handling sentencing but also a wide range of other effects that may not be immediately apparent. For example, depending on the crime a defendant committed, they could be barred from holding certain jobs, living in certain areas, or contacting certain people. It’s also possible for some crimes to lead to permanent registration as a sex offender, which can cause many problems for the defendant in their personal and professional lives.

When you choose Prya Murad Law, LLC, to represent your defense, our goal is to help you approach the case with confidence, explore every available avenue of defense, and minimize your penalties as much as possible. Our team has experience handling a wide variety of criminal cases, including:

  • Driving under the influence (DUI). It is illegal to operate a motor vehicle in Florida under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Florida’s DUI penalties typically include fines, jail time, and loss of driving privileges. However, the police must follow strict rules when conducting DUI arrests, and any failure to do so could amount to an effective defense for the accused. Penalties for DUI conviction increase significantly if the defendant caused an accident resulting in injury or death or if they have a record of previous DUI convictions.
  • Drug crimes. Drug-related offenses are the most commonly prosecuted crimes in the state. It is illegal to purchase, possess, consume, or sell illicit drugs. Marijuana, cocaine, methamphetamine, heroin, and black-market prescription drugs can all lead to serious criminal penalties. However, these penalties typically fluctuate based on the type and quantity of the drug in question and whether the defendant intended to sell and/or traffic the drugs across county or state lines.
  • Violent crimes, such as assault and battery. Any violent crime that results in serious or fatal bodily harm carries severe penalties. The only effective defenses in most of these cases include self-defense and mistaken identity. Therefore, if you have been charged with any violent criminal offense, it is imperative to seek experienced legal representation as soon as possible after arrest and booking.
  • Murder and homicide. If you are charged with a violent offense or any act that led to the death of another person, you could face the most serious criminal charges possible under Florida state law. “Homicide” refers to the killing of another person, and it is possible to face a manslaughter charge for an unintentional killing. “Murder” pertains strictly to the intentional killing of another person.
  • Domestic violence. Any type of violence within a family and/or home constitutes domestic violence. While these offenses may mirror standard criminal offenses like assault or sexual battery, their classification as domestic violence usually means harsher penalties for convicted defendants.
  • Sex crimes. Sex-related criminal offenses, including solicitation or sale of prostitution, sexual assault, rape, and molestation all carry severe penalties. The severity of the penalties for a sex crime typically depend on the age and condition of the victim, and sex crimes against minors usually lead to felony charges. An individual convicted of a sex offense in Florida will likely need to register as a sex offender, and this registration is usually permanent.
  • Juvenile defense. When a minor commits a criminal offense, there is a separate set of rules that apply to juvenile criminal cases. Our firm has experience representing minor defendants and helping their families understand their situations more clearly. We aim to mitigate juvenile criminal penalties and help young defendants rehabilitate whenever possible.
  • Federal crimes. If a criminal act crosses state lines and/or breaks a federal law, it is possible that the defendant will face charges in federal court. This means that a federal law enforcement agency such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), or Department of Homeland Security (DHS) handles the arrest, and the case will unfold under the purview of a federal criminal court judge.

Whatever charges you face in Fort Lauderdale, you can rely on the team at Prya Murad Law, LLC, to provide individualized legal counsel throughout every stage of your proceedings. We will review the charges against you and the strength of the prosecution’s evidence as we assist you in building your defense. After arrest and booking, you will be allowed to make phone calls, and it’s vital to contact a defense attorney as soon as possible in this situation.

What to Expect in Your Criminal Case

When the police in Fort Lauderdale conduct an arrest, they must read the suspect their Miranda rights as they take them into custody. This is a crucial requirement, and failure to do so could lead to an outright case dismissal in some situations. In addition, the police will inform the suspect that they have the right to remain silent and the right to legal counsel. If you find yourself in this situation, take full advantage of these rights and do not say anything until you have secured defense counsel.

Some people who are wrongfully arrested for crimes they did not commit will mistakenly believe that they can explain their way out of these situations. Others may believe that remaining silent would be a tacit admission of guilt. Keep your rights in mind as you are placed under arrest and comply politely with the police officer’s instructions. However, do not say anything, even if you believe it is harmless until you can speak with a Fort Lauderdale criminal defense attorney you can trust.

Once you have hired Prya Murad Law, LLC, to represent your defense, our team will immediately look for any grounds we can find to have your charges dropped. If this is not an option, we will help you understand your situation, the charges against you, and the best defenses available to you. A criminal case will open with a pretrial arraignment or a formal reading of the charges against the defendant. At this point, the defendant may plead “guilty,” and the case will proceed to sentencing. If they plead “no contest,” the case will also proceed to sentencing, but this does not legally qualify as admitting guilt. If the defendant pleads “not guilty,” the case will proceed to a trial.

Defending Against Criminal Charges in Florida

Both the prosecution and the defense will have the ability to file pretrial motions to have certain pieces of evidence removed as inadmissible, and then the discovery process ensues. Both parties must exchange all the evidence and testimony they intend to use at trial. When you have an experienced private Fort Lauderdale criminal defense attorney handling your case, they will help you understand the severity of your situation and assist you in formulating your defense.

Your defense options vary based on the nature of the charges against you. For example, if you did not commit the crime in question, having your case dismissed will likely require you to establish an alibi proving you could not have committed the offense in question and/or were the victim of mistaken identity. Alternatively, you may need to prove self-defense, lack of intent, or coercion to prove you did not intend to commit the offense in question.

If you did commit a crime, your defense attorney is still an invaluable asset when it comes to mitigating your penalties. For example, if the prosecution has all the evidence they need to secure your conviction, they may be willing to plea bargain. This ensures a speedier trial and conserves court resources. In exchange for an immediate guilty plea, the defendant could receive a reduced sentence and/or have lesser charges dropped from the case. Some defendants may also have room to argue for alternative and/or diversionary sentencing. For example, if you are arrested for a drug offense because you suffer from a substance abuse disorder, a good defense attorney can potentially help you make a compelling case that you need treatment in lieu of jail time.

While no defense attorney can ever promise a specific result in any criminal case, the team at Prya Murad Law, LLC, can ensure you have full access to the breadth of our skills and resources through every phase of your case. We have assisted many past clients in overcoming seemingly hopeless cases. If we are unable to help you secure a case dismissal, we will still do everything we can to mitigate your sentence. The sooner you connect with our team, the sooner we can begin compiling your defense.

FAQs About Fort Lauderdale, FL Criminal Law

How Much Does a Fort Lauderdale Criminal Defense Attorney Cost?

Most criminal defense attorneys charge their clients by the hour, so the more time they spend working on the case, the more it costs the client. While it may seem preferable to stick with a public defender free of charge, the reality is that even the best public defenders in Fort Lauderdale cannot match the level of personalized service you could expect from a seasoned private Fort Lauderdale criminal defense attorney. Therefore, when you choose Prya Murad Law, LLC, to represent you, we will carefully explain our billing policy up front, so there are no surprises when it comes to the cost of your representation.

Is It Really Necessary to Hire a Private Defense Attorney?

Technically, there is no legal requirement to hire an attorney for a criminal case. However, the Constitution ensures your right to legal counsel even if you are unable or unwilling to pay a private defense attorney’s fees. Having a public defender represent you is always preferable to attempting self-representation. Even if you are confident that you are innocent of the charges against you, the average person will be significantly unprepared for facing the challenges an experienced prosecutor will present in their case.

How Do I Find the Right Criminal Defense Attorney for My Case?

Time is a critical concern when you are charged with a crime in Fort Lauderdale, and it’s vital to find legal counsel you can trust as soon as possible after arrest and booking. However, you should not simply settle for the first available defense lawyer you find. Take your time to research your options as closely as possible and choose an attorney with a solid record of successful cases similar to yours.

How Long Will My Case Take to Resolve?

The criminal court system moves more quickly in some cases than others. It’s difficult to estimate the time that any given criminal case will take to complete as the timetable can vary tremendously based on multiple factors. Once you have an experienced criminal defense attorney assisting you, they can provide an estimate of how long you can expect your proceedings to last. If your case proceeds to litigation, it could take anywhere from several weeks to more than a year to conclude.

Can a Fort Lauderdale Criminal Defense Attorney Help Me Stay Out of Prison?

When you hire an experienced private Fort Lauderdale criminal defense attorney to represent you in a criminal case, their primary goal should be helping you avoid conviction at all. A good defense team can pick apart a prosecutor’s case at its foundation, potentially finding room to motion for a case dismissal. Otherwise, your attorney’s job is to prevent the prosecutor from meeting the burden of proving your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. When you are clearly guilty, you can still rely on your defense attorney to help you minimize your penalty.

Prya Murad Law, LLC, has a strong record of successful defense cases thanks to our firm’s commitment to responsive, client-focused defense representation. We will assist you in formulating the most compelling defense possible to help you avoid the worst possible outcomes of your criminal case. Contact us today to schedule your case evaluation with a Fort Lauderdale criminal defense attorney you can trust.

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