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Hugo Ernesto Castillo

Criminal defense Attorney at Oakland, CA

4.0   4 reviews

also known as Ernie Castillo

  • Licensed for 21 years
    State CA
    Acquired 2002
    Active No misconduct found

We have not found any instances of professional misconduct for this lawyer.

About Hugo

Learn Hugo’s areas of practice.

Practice area
  1. Criminal defense
    Homicides, Gang Cases, Assault, Sexual Assault, Domestic Violence, Drugs, DUI, Three Strikes, Firearms/Weapons

    22 years

Ernie Castillo specializes in criminal defense throughout the Bay Area.  Ernie Castillo's successful track record of trial experience includes complex topics on DNA, gangs, ballistics, fingerprints, false confessions, mistaken witness identification, sexual assault medical exams, possession for sale of narcotics, the compassionate use act, manufacturing of methamphetamine, accident reconstruction and the use of breathalizers/blood draws. Ernie Castillo's areas of practice include:

Attempted Murder
Vehicular Manslaughter
Assault with deadly weapon
Gang Offenses
Sex Offenses
Domestic Violence
Three Strikes Cases
Drug sales
Sale of methamphetamine
Sales of marijuana
Sales of cocaine
White Collar Crimes

We are dedicated to protecting your freedom and take pride in giving our clients a voice in the courtroom.  Let us dedicate our experience to helping you.

Photos and videos


The Castillo Law Office
1939 Harrison Street
Suite 710
Oakland, CA, 94612

Criminal Defense lawyers nearby


4.0 / 5.0
  4 customer reviews
5 Star
4 Star
3 Star
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1 Star
Posted by Sonia | June 29, 2021
This review is from a potential client who consulted with this attorney.
| Consulted Attorney
Honest and very knowledgeable !
I called Mr. Castillo for a consultation regarding an ongoing case of a family member facing serious charges. Mr. Castillo took the time to explain different scenarios and provided his very honest prespective about the case. I've consulted with other attorney's who only tell you what you want to hear in order to make business. Mr. Castillo is very knowledgeable and was highly recommend. It's unfortunate that i didn't find him much much earlier. Thanks again Mr. Castillo!
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Posted by anonymous | October 30, 2013
Aggressive & Confident Lawyer!
Mr Castillo represented me on a criminal case in which I was falsely accused in 2012. He took over the case from a previous lawyer who was less aggressive and not actively pursing my defense. Mr Castillo is a confident, aggressive and very persistent lawyer. He kept my family and I up to date on the case and also returned our calls on time. Mr Castillo persuaded me not to take any deal and wanted take the case to trial because he was confident that he would win. With the Lord's guidance and Ernie's aggressiveness my case was dismissed. I would highly recommend Mr Castillo to anyone.
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Posted by anonymous | August 2, 2007
Excellent Lawyering by Mr. Castillo
Mr. Castillo just finished a year plus, defense of myself, (case 219094, city of fremont Ca) in which he protected my rites the entire way up to and through, my NOT GUILTY verdict arrived at in a record fashion, 30 minute deliberation by the jury, whilst impeaching witness after witness, as well as using the arresting police offer to help in that impeachment of said witness'. He did such an excellent job that I did not even have testify, nor did we offer a defense. His closing arguements were spot on and thourogh. His battle plan and decision making prowess was second to none. His tanacity in approach as well as overall preformance left no doubt and I, not much of a computer guy, but having used this web page to preruse lawyer ratings, was impressed enough to return to offer this rating of him for your information, and to update the overall rating a new, with this evidence to add to what you have already. I would rehire Ernie in a heartbeat but of course hope I will never have the need again. : ) Please give him your full attention and send this rating of 5.9 you currently have, to a rating of at the very least a 7+. sincere thanks.....Michael Kilmer age 59, a free man with a good reputation still in tact thanks to Mr. Castillo.
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Posted by anonymous | August 10, 2013
Mr. Castillo has been "representing" us for the last year, and at first, seemed like he'd be up to the challenge to take on a case that was messed up completely by a previous lawyer. But, it turns out, he's just like the rest of the attorneys; simply trying to take your money. Why would someone take on a case knowing from the start that he wouldn't be able to do anything about it? Just to tell us at the end to take the "deal". We did not need to pay large sums of money to come to a conclusion of having to take the "deal". Please, beware when dealing with him. In addition to all of this, he RARELY ever returns any calls, texts, emails...ever! You call him, and he texts back after a period of time and says he will call later that day, only to remain waiting for the call 2 weeks later. Very poor communication. We thought we could trust him, but like the first attorney, we were wrong. Did a very poor job at informing us of things.
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We have not found any cost information for this lawyer


AVVO RATING 8.5 (Excellent)

Work Experience

  • Attorney
  • The Castillo Law Office
  • 2002 - Present
  • Extern
  • US district court northern district of california
  • 2001 - 2001
  • Legal Intern
  • San Francisco Public Defender
  • 2000 - 2001


  • Golden Gate University School of Law
  • 2002
  • San Francisco State University
  • BA - Bachelor of Arts
  • 1996

Sample of Legal Cases

  • United States v. D.R.
  • Case Dismissed
  • People v. Ose.
  • Mistrial
  • People v. R.R.
  • Probation.
View all legal cases


  • National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers
  • Member
  • 2010 - Present
  • California Attorneys for Criminal Justice
  • Member
  • 2010 - Present
  • East Bay La Raza Lawyers Association
  • Member
  • 2013 - 2014

Languages Spoken

  • English
  • Spanish

Honors and Awards

  • Client Distinction Award
  • Martindale-Hubbell
  • 2013
  • Rising Star
  • Super Lawyers
  • 2013


  • 147 Cal.App.4th 1470
  • People v. Zaidi
  • 2007

Speaking Engagements

  • College Awareness
  • Criminal Law
  • 2008
  • College Awareness
  • Criminal Law
  • 2006
  • SFPD
  • Criminal Law
  • 1998

Attorney endorsements

Received (7)
Given (0)
Endorse Hugo
Criminal defense Attorney | Dec 12
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I strongly endorse this lawyer's work. His work on behalf of clients, passion and experience in criminal defense are evident. He is dedicated, smart, and committed to the defense of his clients."
Criminal defense Attorney | Dec 13
Relationship: Supervised lawyer
"Ernie is one of the best trial attorneys in Alameda County and Northern California. I endorse this lawyer."
Criminal defense Attorney | Jan 05
Relationship: Worked together on matter
"Ernie and I had a complex white-collar case together. I was impressed with his natural ease and skill in cross-examination. I endorse this lawyer."
Criminal defense Attorney | Dec 31
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Criminal defense Attorney | May 28
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse Hugo. He is a highly skilled attorney that is well respected in the legal community."
Criminal defense Attorney | May 03
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"I endorse this lawyer."
Criminal defense Attorney | Jan 13
Relationship: Fellow lawyer in community
"Mr. Castillo is one of the hardest working and most effective defense attorneys I have ever known. He has an excellent reputation for handling serious cases in both state and federal court, as well as having no fear at trial. I endorse Mr. Castillo without any hesitation."
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This attorney hasn't created any attorney endorsements recently on Avvo.