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Charged with a federal tax crime that took place 4 years ago.

San Francisco, CA |

Wondering if in such a situation a person would have to be in custody pending trial and/or sentencing. It is understood that there are factors that influence this and would like to mention the following (defendant with: no prior criminal record, never any criminal issues, and not involved in the conduct that resulted in charges for 4 years). Conducted research and have gathered that in most federal cases you are allowed to be released during trial and/or until sentencing so long as a defendant does not pose a threat to the general public. I guess a good question is also what do you feel based on experience that the ausa's in the doj view as a threat to the general public?

Attorney Answers 4


  1. See the following site for federal bail practices as explained by the federal public defender: http://www.vaefpd.org/pdf/FedCrimTimeline.pdf. The two considerations are flight risk and public safety. You sound good on the second but you post no information on the second.


  2. In my experience defendants in federal prosecutions are often allowed pre-trial release and you would seem to be a candidate, but many factors are involved and the determination is usually made by a magistrate judge, subject to reconsideration by the district judge. If you are under federal charge, or even if you are or expect to be the subject of a federal criminal investigation then you should have counsel now and you should have an attorney experienced in the rather specialized world of federal criminal defense. If you cannot afford to hire counsel, contact the federal defender office in your district. Court-appointed counsel may be available at the present stage of your case.


  3. In SF, I would contact Mr. Schainbaum, below. He is one of the start of the California Tax Bar and familiar with tax criminal matters (which are on the rise).

    Curt Harrington Patent & Tax Law Attorney Certified Tax Specialist by the California Board of Legal Specialization PATENTAX.COM This communication is general information and not legal advice, and does not create an attorney-client relationship. This communication should not be relied upon as any type of legal advice. Please note that no attorney-client relationship exists between the sender and the recipient of this message in the absence of either (1) a signed fee contract and (2) remission of an agreed-upon retainer. Absent such an agreement and retainer, I am not engaged by you as an attorney, nor is any other member of my law firm.


  4. In the average tax case, the defendant is generally released on a personal recognizance bond. The Court usually sets other conditions that will adequately guarantee his appearance. Most tax charges are for crimes that occurred years ago so that helps. Without additional information it is impossible to know what the Governments recommendation on bond would be. With no criminal record it is unlikely the Court would pre trial detain you on an average tax case. The Court can however take other factors into consideration when it comes to risk of flight. Do you have the financial ability to flee? Have you traveled outside the United States? What are your family ties to the community? Have you voluntarily surrendered? Do you already have an attorney?

    A good criminal tax lawyer should be able to negotiate voluntary surrender as well as pre trial release if you are not a flight risk.

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