Mental/Psychological Issues & White Collar Defense (federal court)

Asked about 1 year ago - Chicago, IL

Wondering if mental/psychological issues that are diagnosed and proven by a professional from this field can be used to mount a defense and/or mitigate charges when negotiating a plea or sentencing in federal court?

Has anyone ever encountered this?

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Raymond George Wigell

    Pro

    Contributor Level 18

    4

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Psychological and medical history, when properly diagnosed most certainty important in defense and mitigation. Sec 3553 of the US Sent Guidelines and caselaw support this approach.
    It takes an experienced criminal defense attorney to properly and effectively present these attributes. The attorney must also be experienced in the history and application of 3553 factors in federal criminal cases.

    Of course, every answer is based on the question asked and requires a more complete context. This answer should... more
  2. Joshua Sachs

    Contributor Level 19

    4

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Can be, sure, but like any other defense or mitigation, you can expect it to be contested. "Diagnosed and proven by a professional from this field" is never a walk. The Government will always be able to find equally competent experts to disagree, and the prosecutor will always be able to argue, " . . . if it's true, so what?" So by all means it is something that the defendant's attorney would want to know about and explore. How much good will it really do? That depends above all else on the facts of the case and on the strength and credibility of the defense, also somewhat on the subjective attitudes of the prosecutor and the judge.

  3. Haytham Faraj

    Pro

    Contributor Level 12

    2

    Lawyers agree

    Answered . The answer is yes to both. The type of offenses charged will impact how that type of evidence is used. Charges that require intentional and knowing are called specific intent crime which require a more specific intent to prove a criminal act. Lack of mental responsibility, even a diminished capacity could affect a defense. Complete mental incompetence is off course always a defense but there is nothing in federal court that passes without challenge. The government will file motions to conduct their own assessment which will be granted by he court if a notice alleging lack of mental responsibility is filed.
    Under the sentencing factors, any diminished capacity will be considered by the court in determining a sentence.

    This is not legal advice. This is merely a recommendation on how to get what you need from the Court.

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