Stalking and Sexually Oriented Offense Protection orders

Ohio offers victims of sexually oriented offenses or stalking the ability to obtain a protection order that prevents the alleged offender from taking specific actions, such as: Contacting the alleged victim, Threatening the alleged victim, Going to the alleged victim’s home or workplace, or Physically assaulting the alleged victim. If you are facing a protection order in Dayton, Ohio, reach out to Gounaris Abboud, LPA as soon as possible.  Different Types of Protection Order in Dayton, Ohio A judge can grant a temporary protection order (TPO), which lasts for only a short period until the court can hold a hearing on a full order. The judge can grant a TPO following allegations: Domestic violence, Aggravated assault, Felonious assault,  Menacing by stalking, or Aggravated trespass. Violation of a TPO is a criminal offense.  A civil protection order issued under Ohio Revised Code Section 3113.31 applies only to domestic violence situations. That means the alleged act of violence must have occurred toward the accused’s household or family member. A civil protection order can remain in effect from six months to five years. If the alleged victim is not a family or household member, the victim can request a criminal protection order if the accused faces charges for any of the following criminal offenses: Felonious assault, Aggravated assault, Assault, Aggravated menacing, Menacing by stalking,  Menacing, or Aggravated trespass. The criminal protection order can apply to the alleged victim, as well as their family members, if they are in danger. Stalking or Sexually Oriented Offense Protection Orders in Ohio Stalking or sexually oriented offense protection orders (SSOOPO) are different from customary protection orders in Ohio. To file for an SSOOPO against someone 18 or older, the alleged victim has to file their petition in the court of common pleas in the county they live in.  There is no cost to file the petition for an SSOOPO, get the order issued, or enforce the order. Additionally, law enforcement will serve the order free of charge. If the petitioner can show that the suspect engaged in conduct that would cause a reasonable person to believe that their health, welfare, or safety were at risk and that the suspect presents a continuing danger to them, the judge can order electronic monitoring. When someone files for an SSOOPO, the court will hold an ex parte hearing with the accuser and collect information about the circumstances. The judge will then decide whether to issue a temporary protection order until the full hearing occurs. The judge will schedule the full hearing within seven to ten days after the petition is filed. At the full hearing, both parties will have an opportunity to present their side of the case. After the hearing, the judge will decide whether to grant a final protection order, which can last up to five years. Civil Stalking Protection Order in Ohio A victim can apply for a civil stalking protection order in Ohio against anyone who has committed the crime of stalking or menacing by stalking. Menacing by stalking occurs when a person knowingly engages in a “pattern of conduct” that makes the victim believe the stalker will hurt them physically or causes them mental distress. Mental distress typically means any condition that would require counseling or therapy. Examples of stalking behavior include things like: Tracking the victim’s location with GPS or cell phone applications, Trespassing in the victim’s home or workplace, Threatening the victim or their family, Scrupulously monitoring the victim’s social media, and Following the victim home repeatedly. To constitute a “pattern of conduct,” the alleged victim needs to demonstrate at least two actions or incidents of concern by the suspect. Ohio Sexually Oriented Protection Order . A sexually oriented offense occurs when someone commits or attempts to commit: Rape, Sexual battery,  Unlawful sexual contact with a minor,  Gross sexual imposition, Importuning, Voyeurism, Prostitution, Pandering obscenity, or Menacing by stalking with sexual motivation. An arrest is not required for a sexually oriented offense protection order. Instead, the petitioner must show that the suspect committed one of the sexually oriented offenses listed above. Violating a Protection Order Violating a protection order is considered a misdemeanor of the first degree in Ohio. A first-degree misdemeanor in Ohio carries a maximum penalty of up to six months in jail and a fine of up to $1,000. If the named party violates a protection order while committing a felony, the violation is a felony in the third degree. A third-degree felony in Ohio carries a maximum penalty of sixty months in prison and a fine of up to $10,000. Should I Hire an Attorney for a Protection Order in Ohio? When the court grants a protection order, they will do so after hearing evidence from both parties to the order. During the hearing, you can dispute the petitioner’s allegations against you and offer your own statement. Having an attorney to represent you during the hearing can prove a valuable benefit to your case.  Protection orders often arise in high-stress, complicated situations and can impact your life in many negative ways. Gounaris Abboud, LPA, can provide the information you need to navigate this process and fight a protection order in Ohio. Contact our office today to discuss your case.

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3rd dui offense in ohio

The legal system is harsh when you’ve been arrested for the same crime multiple times. According to Ohio’s laws on Operating a Vehicle Impaired (OVI), punishments increase for a second drunk driving conviction, a third, and so forth. You can fight the charges to get a favorable outcome in your case. To do so, you’ll need an Ohio DUI defense attorney to represent you and fight for your rights. You should also review some critical information about the proceedings. Summary of Multiple Offenses Under Ohio DUI Laws Regardless of how many previous convictions are in your criminal history, the standards for OVI are the same. You can be arrested under two different circumstances: Police pulled you over and asked you to take a chemical test, in which you registered a blood alcohol content (BAC) of .08% or more; or, Officers stopped you and had reasonable suspicion that you were impaired by alcohol. There is a statute about high BAC amounts, which could affect your sentence in a drunk driving case. Any BAC amount of .17% or higher may implicate more penalties. Penalties Increase for a Third DUI Conviction If you’re convicted for a third drunk driving offense for impairment or a BAC over .08 through a chemical test, the criminal punishment is severe. For purposes of the law, keep in mind that the look-back period is ten years. Mandatory sentencing applies for a conviction: A judge may sentence you to 30 days to one year in jail. Upon release, the court may impose at least three months of electronic home monitoring. You’ll receive a mandatory fine of at least $850. Your driver’s license will be suspended for at least 24 months and up to 10 years. Other consequences may also apply in your case. Though you may have limited driving privileges to get to and from school, your job, and other essentials, you’re not eligible for at least 180 days after your arrest. You’ll need to install an ignition interlock device (IID) on your vehicle during this time, and you must attend a substance abuse program. Retain an Ohio OVI/DUI Lawyer Who Will Defend Your Interests There are severe consequences for a third DUI offense, including higher fines, longer terms of incarceration, and other penalties. Don’t put your rights at risk by trying to represent yourself in such a case. Trust one of our attorneys at Gounaris Abboud, LPA to advocate on your behalf. Please contact us to set up a consultation, where we can review your circumstances and determine how to proceed with your defense.

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parent child relationship parentage

Parent and child relationship means the legal relationship that exists between a child and the child’s natural or adoptive parents and upon which those sections and any other provision of the Revised Code confer or impose rights, privileges, duties, and obligations. The “parent and child relationship” includes the mother and child relationship and the father and child relationship. How Does Someone Establish Paternity? In some cases, the court must decide parental rights. In other situations, the person is a child’s biological parent. With adoption, it would be a non-biological parent. The parent and child relationship is legal and imposes duties, obligations, rights, and privileges.  In Ohio, there are three primary ways to establish paternity.  Marriage The most common way to establish parental rights is through marriage. The law assumes paternity when a couple is married when the mother gives birth. Paternity will also be assumed when the child is born within 300 days after divorce or death. Parties have the right to dispute this at a support hearing, but resolving such a dispute would require genetic testing. If the mother is unmarried, the child has no legal father, and parentage must be established by one of the remaining two options.  Acknowledgment of Paternity Affidavit The affidavit of parenting time is a form that’s available at the hospital when the mother is in labor. You can also pick one up at the nearest Child Support Enforcement Agency (CSEA). Both parents must complete the affidavit form and have it notarized. Completing the acknowledgment of the paternity affidavit is a voluntary process for establishing the identity of the child’s biological parents. Mothers who have doubts about who the father is should not let someone sign the affidavit. It’s better to proceed with genetic testing first if any doubt exists.  Filling out the form requires a photo ID. Each parent must provide their full name, address, date of birth, and Social Security Number (if applicable). The father will also need to provide his birth state or country. Both parents must sign the form in front of a notary, but they don’t need to do it at the same time. For the affidavit form, free notary services are available at hospitals, CSEAs, or local registrars and health departments.  Genetic Testing The third method of establishing paternity is through genetic testing. This option usually happens when someone is contesting paternity, or the child’s parentage is in question. Parentage testing is done by swabbing skin cells inside the mouth of the child, mother, and potential father. For the court to confirm paternity, the test results must indicate a 99% chance of paternity. If the court or CSEA issues an order for paternity, the potential father could face legal troubles for not cooperating with the order.  When you establish parentage through genetic testing or the affidavit, results are sent to the Central Paternity Registry in Ohio. The Central Paternity Registry (CPR) is a federally-mandated program that requires each state to maintain a paternity registry for all children born to unmarried mothers.  Establishing Rights and Benefits  For many people, voluntarily establishing paternity is desirable. Parents typically want to have their name on the birth certificate, and they want to enjoy the legal rights and obligations of being a parent. Some of the benefits are as follows:  The father gains legal rights to their child once their name is added to the child’s birth certificate. That gives the child access to benefits such as life insurance, Social Security, inheritances, and military benefits, if applicable.  The child has access to their father’s health insurance, and they have information on both the mother’s and father’s medical histories.  One of the most obvious benefits of establishing paternity is the opportunity for a child to bond with their father.  What Happens After You Determine Paternity? What happens once you determine paternity might vary depending on your circumstances. If both parents are in a committed relationship, there may not be a need to file anything with the court. For parents who are not together, it may be necessary to file for custody and child support. The court might issue an order that allocates custody and each parent’s rights and responsibilities. Each parent will have the opportunity to present evidence supporting what they believe to be in the child’s best interests.  The court will also request health insurance information and proof of income to determine a reasonable award for child support.  Do You Need to Hire a Family Law Attorney? While you are under no obligation to hire a lawyer for parentage matters, it’s definitely wise to do so. The legal team at Gounaris Abboud, LPA, has over 50 years of collective experience in family law matters. We understand how quickly things can turn sour in paternity cases. We can assist you if you are the mother requesting someone get genetic testing or if you are the father who needs help establishing parental rights.  Don’t jeopardize your potential rights by trying to handle a parentage case independently. Our family law attorneys stand ready to help. Contact our office at 937-222-1515 to schedule an initial consultation. 

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unlawful sexual conduct with a minor

No person who is eighteen years of age or older shall engage in sexual conduct with another, who is not the spouse of the offender when the offender knows the other person is thirteen years of age or older but less than sixteen years of age or the offender is reckless in that regard. Under Ohio Revised Code Section 2907.04, if the offender is ten (10) years or more years older than the other person, unlawful sexual conduct with a minor is a felony of the third degree.     Age of Consent In Ohio, the age of consent is 16 years old. This means anyone over the age of 16 may have sexual intercourse with anyone else who is also at least 16 years old. It even goes so far as to allow a 16-year-old to engage in sexual intercourse with a 40-year-old as long as it is consensual and the older individual is not in a position of authority (e.g., the 16-year-old’s teacher or priest).  Any marriage involving a 16 or 17-year-old girl requires parental consent, but only judicial consent is required if the teenager is a boy. Further, child pornography laws always apply even with incestuous relationships. Even though there may be consent between a 16-year-old and a 30-year-old, the 30-year-old cannot film or photograph the 16-year-old in any state of nudity. Sex Crimes As with any sexual relationship or conduct between adults, it must be consensual. However, there are circumstances that involve individuals who do not have the capacity to provide consent. For instance, the other person’s ability to resist or consent is substantially impaired because of a mental or physical condition or because of advanced age, and the offender knows or has reasonable cause to believe that the other person’s ability to resist or consent is substantially impaired because of a mental or physical condition or because of advanced age. Sexual Battery When a parent or parental figure has sexual intercourse with their child, it is considered sexual battery, which is a third-degree felony in Ohio. A conviction carries a maximum prison sentence of five years, fines of up to $10,000, and sex offender registration. If the child is under 13, then the sexual battery charge becomes a second-degree felony. A conviction is punishable by up to eight years in prison, up to a $15,000 fine, and sex offender registration. Statutory Rape In Ohio, an individual who is 18 or older cannot engage in sexual conduct with a 13 to 16-year-old who is not their spouse. If the offender is less than 4 years older than the victim, it is a first-degree misdemeanor punishable by up to 180 days in jail, up to $1,000 in fines, or both. If the offender is between 4 and 9 years older than the victim, it is a fourth-degree felony punishable by up to 18 months in prison, up to $5,000 in fines, or both. If the offender is 10 or more years older than the victim, it is a third-degree felony punishable by up to 36 months in prison, up to $10,000 in fines, or both. If you have been accused of an incest-related sex crime of any magnitude, contact Gounaris Abboud, LPA, to discuss your case and possible defenses. Ohio Criminal Defense Attorneys At Gounaris Abboud, LPA, our goal is always to provide the best possible outcome for our clients. We have over 50 years of combined experience, and we pride ourselves on providing excellent legal counsel to all who come to us for help. Our award-winning criminal defense attorneys will provide you with aggressive and reliable representation for your case from start to finish. If you have been accused of an incest crime, contact us today to get started on your defense.

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who investigates federal crimes

The federal government authorizes multiple agencies to investigate several areas of federal crime.  An enormous quantity of federal crimes exist. Thus, one agency would get overwhelmed if it were responsible for investigating every single allegation of wrongdoing. Instead, various agencies head federal crime investigations for offenses within their expertise. For example, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) investigates allegations of tax fraud, tax evasion, and other violations of federal tax codes. If you tasked a group of IRS federal crime investigators with finding a suspected drug smuggler, they would likely not know where to start.  Even if you are under investigation by a federal agency, you still have the right to effective legal counsel. Federal criminal charges can result in steep fines, a stiff prison sentence, and a significant stint on probation. Contact one of our federal criminal defense attorneys at Gounaris Abboud, LPA today to represent you. Which Agencies Investigate Federal Crimes? As stated above, several agencies investigate allegations of federal law violations. The various federal agencies hold responsibility for different types of crimes. Federal Bureau of Investigation If you watch law enforcement dramas on television, you have likely heard of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). The FBI essentially acts as the police for the federal government, making up the largest federal law enforcement agency. It is tasked with investigating a broad range of crimes, including: Drug trafficking, Financial wrongdoing, Kidnapping, Counterterrorism, and Criminals who cross state lines. Additionally, the FBI frequently assists local law enforcement with their investigations, providing lots of additional resources and expertise when needed. Drug Enforcement Agency The Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) carries responsibility for investigating and enforcing federal drug laws. The DEA primarily focuses on large-scale drug operations that transport the products across state lines or deal in international drug trafficking. In many cases, the DEA and FBI partner with local agencies to take down large drug trafficking rings and prevent smuggling. The DEA also seizes and forfeits any assets that are derived from, traceable to, or intended to be used for drug trafficking. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) is often not as recognizable as some other federal agencies that make appearances across nighttime television programs. However, ATF is responsible for some of the largest investigations. ATF specializes in the enforcement of federal weapons charges, which can include anything from firearms trafficking to the illegal use and storage of explosives. The ATF also investigates arson, bombings, and acts of terrorism. Securities and Exchange Commission The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) regulates and enforces federal securities laws to protect investors and improve transparency in the investing process. The SEC oversees participants involved in securities markets and brings civil enforcement actions against parties accused of crimes like insider trading, fraud, or false and misleading statements to investors.  Many of the crimes investigated by the SEC are referred to as white collar crimes. In some cases, the FBI assists the SEC in its investigation of white collar criminal activity. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is responsible for enforcing immigration laws as well as investigating criminal and terrorist activity of foreign nationals that reside within the United States. ICE was formed after 9/11 and is the primary investigative and law enforcement branch of the Department of Homeland Security. Fish and Wildlife Service The law enforcement division of the Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) investigates crimes involving wildlife, regulates wildlife trade, helps conserve wildlife resources, and educates everyday Americans about wildlife protection laws. This is who investigates crimes like poaching or hunting an endangered animal. U.S. Postal Inspection Service The Postal Inspection Service (USPIS) enforces the laws that defend the United States mail system from illegal or dangerous uses. The Postal Inspection Service also supports and protects the USPS and its employees, infrastructure, and customers in whatever ways it can.  Does It Matter Who Investigates Federal Crimes? Regardless of which agency investigates the federal crime, the accused party still has the same constitutional rights. It might seem scarier to go into an interview with an FBI agent as opposed to a local police officer. However, the FBI agent has to respect your constitutional rights the same way. Regardless of whether you are facing allegations at the federal or state level, you should contact an attorney as soon as possible. Are You the Subject of a Federal Crime Investigation? Contact Gounaris Abboud, LPA Today Our team of federal defense attorneys at Gounaris Abboud, LPA has over 50 years of combined experience representing individuals with criminal accusations against them. If you or a loved one is facing allegations that you committed a federal offense, you should contact an attorney as soon as you can. Even in the most challenging cases, we pride ourselves on offering aggressive and courageous advocacy for our clients. Contact our office at 937-222-1515, so we can start reviewing your case.

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gun restoration ohio

Have you been convicted of a felony in Ohio and have lost your right to own and carry a firearm?  The 2nd Amendment of the Constitution provides the right of the people to “keep and bear arms.”  However, a felony conviction can take that right away.  If you are interested in restoring your right to own and bear arms, then contact the Ohio criminal defense lawyers from Gounaris Abboud, LPA. Our knowledgeable criminal defense attorneys have the skills you need to work with you to restore your gun rights.   How Does an Ohio Resident Lose Their Gun Rights? A person can lose their 2nd Amendment right to own and bear arms in a number of ways, including: Committing a felony; If you’re found to be drug or alcohol dependent, or in danger of becoming drug or alcohol dependent;  Determined by a Court to be mentally incompetent; Are subject to certain restraining orders. How Does an Ohio Citizen Restore Their Gun Rights? If you’ve lost your right to own and bear arms under the 2nd Amendment because of a felony conviction, there is a mechanism under Ohio law to restore those rights.  A person must first have completed their sentence, including being discharged from probation, parole and not be under any court supervision; A person must be a “fit subject” for relief by leading a law-abiding life;; A person must NOT have had any new convictions since the conviction that led to the loss of their gun rights. If all of these factors have been met, then it is important to contact the Ohio criminal defense lawyers from Gounaris Abboud, LPA.  Our lawyers are knowledgeable and can assist you in filing the necessary paperwork.  Even after filing, you will have to convince a court that you are not a danger to the community, and you deserve the right to own and bear arms.   Get the Help You Need to Help Restore Your Gun Rights If you have more questions or need help in working to restore your gun rights, call Gounaris Abboud, LPA, right away at 937-222-1515. Our award-winning and reputable criminal defense lawyers can work with you to help restore your 2nd Amendment rights. We have more than 50 years of combined experience, and we enjoy a great professional reputation in the legal community. We’ve won numerous recognitions and awards, including being named in the Ohio Super Lawyers List, making the Top 100 Trial Lawyers List from the National Trial Lawyers Association, and we enjoy an excellent 10 out of 10 rating on AVVO. So don’t hesitate. Contact us today for more information.

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  • July 08, 2022
  • OVI
what happens if you refuse a breathalyzer in ohio

There is a big difference between a standard breathalyzer and a portable breath test—also called a PBT test or portable breathalyzer. Although both tests measure a person’s blood-alcohol level, the results from the PBT test are not admissible in court. The results from a standard breathalyzer may be admissible in court if the prosecutor satisfies the legal requirements. Successfully defending a charge of operating a vehicle while intoxicated (OVI) often starts with challenging the validity of the prosecutor’s evidence. Having an OVI defense lawyer who knows the law and understands how to challenge breathalyzer results successfully could mean the difference between a conviction and an opportunity to walk away without penalties. In the Dayton area, Gounaris Abboud, LPA, is the team you can trust to help protect your rights and your future. Admissibility of Breathalyzer Results in Ohio The Ohio Revised Code § 4511.19 is the State’s OVI statute. The statute says a person cannot drive a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol. Notice that this law states that you must be experiencing the effects of alcohol and actually be impaired. However, the “per se” OVI rule states that if you have a .08% blood-alcohol concentration (BAC) you are breaking the law—whether you are actually impaired by the alcohol. More specifically, the .08% BAC means that the ethanol in your system meets or exceeds .08 grams in 100 milliliters of blood or .08 grams in 210 liters of breath. It is illegal to drive with that much alcohol in your system, regardless of its impact on your ability to drive. Ohio’s OVI law allows for the analysis of breath, urine, whole blood, blood serum, or plasma to determine if the person is OVI per se.   Admissibility of Breath Tests in Court A prosecutor cannot simply discuss the breathalyzer test in court without meeting the legal requirements to introduce the results into evidence. Unlike in television shows or movies where the characters freely talk about evidence, Ohio law imposes strict rules that the parties must meet before the judge or jury can hear the evidence. In court, the judge calls that process “laying a foundation.”  Foundation for admissibility The prosecutor must lay the proper foundation before the judge allows the breathalyzer results into evidence. The OVI law explicitly states that a breathalyzer test taken within three hours may be admitted into evidence at trial to prove the accused’s blood-alcohol level. Any breath sample taken more than three hours after the arrest is not admissible. Ohio’s OVI law states that the arresting police officer must ask the person under arrest for OVI to take a chemical test. Next, the officer must warn the person about the consequences of refusing a breathalyzer test. Finally, the breath test must meet the methods approved by the Ohio Director of Health.  Requirements for test admissibility The director of health publishes the requirements for breathalyzer tests. The requirements include: Setting guidelines for testing methods; Establishing qualifications of individuals authorized to administer the tests; and Certifying each person allowed to administer the breathalyzer. The director also has the authority to revoke any certification issued. Before the prosecution can offer the breathalyzer test results in evidence, the prosecutor has to show that the breathalyzer machine worked adequately and that a certified breath test operator administered the test. Part of this process is proving that the testing officer followed the checklists and recorded the data on the right forms. This process also includes testing the solution in the breathalyzer every seven days.  What Can Happen If the Police Do Not Follow the Breathalyzer Rules? The judge can exclude the breathalyzer test results if the prosecutor fails to lay the proper foundation to admit the test results in evidence. The judge can also exclude the results if the machine was not in working order or the officer who gave the test was not certified.  Without the test results in evidence, you stand a better chance of winning the case.  Are PBT Results Admissible in Ohio Courts? A police officer who pulls you over can administer a portable breath test at the scene. The officer might be able to use that test result to help determine whether probable cause exists to arrest you for OVI. But that’s as far as this evidence can go. Courts in Ohio do not allow PBT evidence at trial. The officer cannot testify to the result or even state that the officer gave you the test. And unlike the refusal of a proper breathalyzer, the refusal to take a PBT cannot be used against you in court.  The reason these tests are inadmissible is that courts have determined that PBT machines are highly inaccurate. Unlike breathalyzer machines, there are no reliable methods for testing a PBT’s accuracy. Additionally, there are no testing or certification requirements for a PBT device, unlike a breathalyzer test installed in a police station.  Fight the Breathalyzer Results In Your Case with Experienced OVI Defense Lawyers  The OVI defense attorneys with Gounaris Abboud, LPA, have tremendous experience fighting OVI cases successfully by challenging the breath test results. Their knowledge, skill, and experience can help you when you need it most. Contact our firm today at 937-222-1515 to speak with an award-winning OVI attorney. We will listen to your needs and help you achieve a successful outcome.

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federal conspiracy charge

The federal authorities never let go when they sink their teeth into someone in a criminal investigation. They will use all of the criminal laws found in the U.S. Code to the fullest extent to break up criminal enterprises. One of their favorite tactics involves slapping a federal conspiracy charge on anyone even remotely involved with the target of the investigation. The feds do this because they know they can get a co-conspirator to testify against the people they really want to secure a conviction on. A conviction for conspiracy, or any federal charge, can have devastating consequences for you and your family. You need to speak with a skilled federal defense lawyer right away if a federal law enforcement agency involves you in their investigation. The experienced federal defense attorneys with Gounaris Abboud, LPA, understand what you’re up against. They are willing and ready to help you get the best result for your federal conspiracy charge. What Is the Federal Conspiracy Law? The primary federal conspiracy statute is 18 U.S.C. 371. It says that a conspiracy against the United States occurs when two or more people conspire to commit an act that is a crime under the U.S. Code. It is also a crime to conspire to defraud the United States. However, the crime of conspiracy is not complete unless one of the co-conspirators does an overt act to further the conspiracy. What does it mean to conspire with someone? A conspiracy is an agreement between two or more people to commit an act. The essence of conspiracy is the unlawful agreement. Even if you and your partner never committed the crime you planned, you are still part of a conspiracy. For example, you and a partner hatch a plan to rob a federally insured bank. Talking about it does not amount to the crime of conspiracy. However, taking a step toward completing the goal forms the crime of conspiracy. Therefore, casing the bank you want to rob—either alone or with your co-conspirator—forms the basis of the crime of conspiracy under federal law. Other Examples of Federal Conspiracy Charges The U.S. Code contains several other conspiracy charges as well. Some examples of additional federal conspiracy charges include conspiring against: Impeding the free exercise of rights (18 USC 241); Defrauding the Government concerning claims (18 USC 286); Impeding or injuring an officer (18 USC 372); Aiding prisoners of war or enemy aliens (18 USC 757); Gathering or delivering defense information to assist a foreign government (18 USC 794); Drug trafficking and other drug offenses (21 USC 846): Injuring a person or property in a foreign country while under U.S. jurisdiction (18 USC 956); Kidnapping (18 USC 1201); Destroying a boat to defraud an insurance company (18 USC 2271); Sedition (18 USC 2384); Interfering with armed forces during a time of war (18 USC 2388); Destruction of war material (18 USC 2153); and Interfering with the production of war material (18 USC 2154). The U.S. Code contains many other instances of conspiracy. It’s important to note that the general conspiracy charge found in 18 USC 371 requires an overt act to form the conspiracy, but many of the others do not.  What Are the Federal Conspiracy Penalties? A federal conspiracy sentence depends on the crime that is the object of the conspiracy. The penalty for conspiring to commit a crime against the United States is a prison sentence of no more than five years. Section 371 also indicates that the court may levy a fine in addition to sending the conspirator to federal prison. However, the maximum sentence for a conspiracy whose object is a misdemeanor carries the same penalty as the misdemeanor.  The potential consequences of conspiracy will depend on the conspiracy charge the government files. Some conspiracy statutes specify a penalty, while others state that the penalty is the same for conspiracy as it would be for the completed crime. For instance, conspiracy to commit drug trafficking carries the same prison sentence as drug trafficking.  What Rights Do You Have If the Feds Charged You with Conspiracy? You always have the right to remain silent and have an attorney present during police questioning. The Miranda warning applies to federal law enforcement just as it does to local police. Ask for an attorney before giving a statement.  The Department of Justice prosecutes federal crimes. Their lawyers work closely with federal agents to make airtight cases. The chances are good that they have a lot of evidence against you if they file criminal charges. However, that does not mean you are automatically guilty.  You have Due Process rights to a fair trial judged by a jury of your peers. You also have the right to confront witnesses who testify against you and call witnesses on your behalf. However, prosecutors often build cases against low-level conspirators to get to the top of the criminal enterprise. Federal prosecutors may “proffer” you to find out what information you have that can help them. In exchange for your information and testimony, they would likely give you a good plea deal for your role in the conspiracy. Your lawyer will negotiate the terms of your agreement with the prosecutor on your behalf.  Contact an Experienced Federal Defense Attorney in Dayton, OH Today Fighting a case in the U.S. District Court takes a tremendous amount of knowledge, skill, and experience. The federal defense attorneys with Gounaris Abboud, LPA, have the experience you need to help defend against your federal conspiracy charges successfully. Do not wait and see what happens before calling. Contact our office today at 937-222-1515. We have more than 50 years of collective experience fighting for our client’s rights. We will give you the time and attention you need to handle your legal issues successfully.

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mail theft punishment

Shoplifting crimes may seem like minor offenses. However, the shoplifting laws in Ohio fall under the general category of theft. Since theft crimes can either be misdemeanors or felonies, you should be aware of the negative consequences a theft conviction could have on your life. Having a dedicated and experienced Ohio criminal defense lawyer by your side can help you resolve your case favorably. The Dayton criminal defense lawyers with Gounaris Abboud, LPA, do more than aggressively defend your case. When you work with our firm, you will experience the difference a trustworthy, empathetic, honest, and supportive attorney can make in your life.  Shoplifting Charges in Ohio Shoplifting in Ohio has two meanings. You might think that shoplifting only takes place when someone conceals an item and walks out of a store without paying. However, deceiving the store owner to pay less for an item is also shoplifting. You might not realize it, but changing the price on an item by either altering the price tag or by switching the price tag from one item to another is shoplifting. That’s harder to do these days when most stores don’t use price tags and rely on UPC barcodes for pricing. But switching packaging is also shoplifting when you pay less for the item than indicated for that specific item.  Ohio Shoplifting Penalties  Shoplifting penalties range in severity depending on the value of the stolen items. Although the term shoplifting implies that the stolen items are small and easily concealed, the theft statute in Ohio allows someone to serve up to 10 years in prison, depending on the situation.  Under the Ohio theft law, a conviction for stealing property valued at less than $1,000 is petty theft and is a first-degree misdemeanor. The maximum penalty for a first-degree misdemeanor is 180 days in jail and a maximum fine of $1,000. The punishments become more serious as the value of the stolen property increases. Stolen merchandise valued between $1,000 and $7,500 constitutes a fifth-degree felony. You could serve between six months to one year in jail and have to pay a $2,500 fine.  Stealing property valued between $7,500 and $150,000 is a fourth-degree felony. The punishment ranges from 6 to 18 months in jail and a $5,000 fine. You face third-degree felony charges for theft of property worth $150,000 up to $750,000. The punishment for this charge is a prison sentence of one to five years and a fine of no more than $10,000. Second-degree felony theft is the appropriate charge for property stolen that has a value of at least $750,000 but less than $1,500,000. The prison term for this sentence falls between two and eight years, along with a fine of $15,000.  Stealing property worth more than $1,500,000 is a first-degree felony. The sentence for this offense is 3 to 10 years in prison and a $20,000 fine. Additional Shoplifting Penalties You could face civil liability for shoplifting in addition to criminal sanctions. As a result, the judge may order you to make restitution to the store owner for the value of the goods stolen. Also, you are liable for any damages the store incurred beyond the value of the stolen property. For instance, the court could find that you damaged property while fleeing the store. If so, the judge may order you to pay for those losses as well. You should understand that civil liability could entail paying the plaintiff’s attorney’s fees and court costs as well. A felony conviction carries collateral consequences on top of the penalties described above. A felony conviction for theft could be impossible to seal or expunge from your record. You might also have a difficult time finding work or keeping your job if your employer considers theft to be a crime of dishonesty. A theft conviction may hamper your pursuit of educational opportunities as well. A felony theft conviction could endanger your immigration status if you are not a U.S. citizen. Additionally, you could lose your ability to become a naturalized citizen or be refused re-entry into the country. You could also lose the right to vote and your right to possess a firearm.  Why Do I Need a Lawyer for My Shoplifting Charge? The shoplifting laws in Ohio are strict. You could go to jail even after a conviction for petty theft. Moreover, as the value of the stolen property increases, so does the likelihood that you will go to prison. Having a skilled Ohio criminal defense attorney fight for you can protect your rights. You have only one chance to defend your case successfully. Making a mistake while trying to defend yourself—even from misdemeanor shoplifting charges—can hurt you in the long run. Seeking advice from a skilled attorney with extensive experience defending the rights of the accused gives you the best chance to minimize the impact your charges will have on your life. Work with a Dayton Law Firm That Cares About Your Future Call Gounaris Abboud, LPA, today at 937-222-1515 or contact us online to speak with one of our experienced and compassionate criminal defense lawyers. Our award-winning attorneys will explain your options and plot a course of action that can help you get the best results for the circumstances surrounding your case. We may be able to get the prosecutor to agree to a favorable plea, reduce your charges, or possibly even dismiss your case altogether. With our extensive legal knowledge and dedication to your well-being, we can make a difference for you. 

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ohio white collar crimes lawyer

If you face charges for a white-collar crime, it is important you understand exactly what is at stake. While most white-collar crimes are non-violent in nature, that doesn’t mean that they are not taken seriously. In many cases, those convicted of a white-collar crime face the possibility of a jail sentence. There are many types of white-collar crimes, many of which can be prosecuted under state or federal law. In this article, the Dayton, Ohio criminal defense lawyers at Gounaris Abboud, LPA will go over the ins and outs of white-collar crimes. If you have questions, please contact us today,  What Are White-Collar Crimes? A white-collar crimes definition isn’t exact. But generally speaking, the term white-collar crime is used to refer to non-violent financial crimes. The name comes from the fact that, often, those accused of a white-collar crime are executives or high-ranking “white-collar” workers. There are many types of white-collar crimes, including the following. Embezzlement Embezzlement is when someone misappropriates money or other property that was entrusted to that person. For example, a stockbroker who uses her clients’ money for personal purposes may be committing embezzlement. Insurance Fraud Insurance fraud involves making a false claim with an insurance company or providing false information. For example, a doctor who files a claim with an insurance company for a treatment she never provided may be committing insurance fraud. Money Laundering Money laundering involves taking illegally obtained money and making it appear as though it came from a legitimate source. Often, money laundering involves “washing” the money through a cash-heavy business. Investment Fraud Investment fraud describes a broad range of white-collar crimes, all of which are intended to bilk investors from their money. For example, pyramid schemes, Ponzi schemes, advance-fee fraud, and cryptocurrency fraud are all types of investment fraud. These are just a few of the different white-collar crimes; there are many more. However, as a general rule, a white-collar crime involves a professional person using false or misleading statements to gain access to another’s money or property. It is very important to understand the type of white-collar crime you face. It is also essential you understand the difference between state and federal white-collar crimes. Are White-Collar Crimes State of Federal Offenses? Many types of white-collar crime can be charged in state or federal court. As a general rule, if your conduct allegedly violates state law, state prosecutors will charge you in state court. However, if your conduct involves an alleged violation of federal law, federal prosecutors will likely charge you in federal court. In many criminal cases, state and federal prosecutors both have the ability to charge a defendant’s conduct. This happens when a defendant’s actions allegedly violate both state and federal law. However, state courts handle the vast majority of criminal offenses. That said, white-collar crime ends up in federal court more often than many other types of crime. There are a few reasons for this. Complexity White-collar criminal prosecutions often involve complex financial schemes. It can be very expensive and labor-intensive to investigate these offenses. The federal government has far more resources than the state government. Thus, the federal government may pick up a case if it believes the state government lacks the resources to mount an effective prosecution. Additionally, if a case involves an investigation that spans multiple states, it may be more difficult for a single state prosecutor’s office to bring the charges. Interstate Activity The United States Constitution places limits on the types of cases that federal courts can hear. One of the categories of cases that fall within a federal court’s jurisdiction is those involving actions committed in more than one state. Many white-collar crimes involve interstate commerce. For example, using the internet, phone lines, or the mail can trigger federal court jurisdiction. Notoriety Federal prosecutors are more selective in choosing their cases because there are fewer federal prosecutors than their state counterparts. However, the federal government tends to focus on those cases that are note-worthy or have very high stakes. Knowing whether you face white-collar state crimes or federal white-collar crimes is important. It can determine your best defense strategy as well as the punishment you face if convicted. Thus, it is essential you work with an attorney who is experienced in handling state and federal white-collar crimes. Are You Facing a White-Collar Criminal Prosecution? If you face white-collar crimes in state or federal court, it is imperative that you reach out to a dedicated criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. At Gounaris Abboud, LPA, our attorneys handle all types of criminal offenses, including white-collar crimes, theft offenses, drug crimes, and more. We routinely handle cases in both state and federal court and work with our clients to develop compelling defenses to the charges they face. We also make ourselves available 24/7 to answer your questions or discuss your case whenever something comes up. o learn more and to schedule, a free consultation with an Ohio criminal defense lawyer, call us at 937-222-1515. You can also reach us through our online contact form.

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