Facing charges for any kind of criminal offense are serious and have lasting repercussions. Committing crimes against the justice system itself is even more serious. The advice of a criminal defense attorney is that some defendants do not even realize that their actions after an initial arrest can lead to additional charges being filed. It is vital for defendants to understand which actions are considered crimes against the criminal justice system and avoid them completely to prevent additional charges and a potentially longer punishment.
Violations of Probation or Parole
Violating probation or parole provisions are two of the most common acts that are considered to be against the justice system. When any of these rules are intentionally broken, it is a violation of the arrangements that were agreed upon in the first place and is viewed as a crime against the justice system. A hearing is scheduled and new punishment assessed that can include fines, imprisonment or a return to prison, community service, and other additional penalties as determined by the reviewing judge.
Lying Under Oath
Perjury is a serious offense in the justice system, as anyone who takes the oath in a courtroom is expected to tell the truth. Lying under oath, intending to mislead, and otherwise failing to be truthful can seriously affect the outcome of a trial. A person who has committed perjury can face up to 5 years imprisonment.
Obstruction of Justice and Destruction of Evidence
There are different ways in which an individual can obstruct the process of justice; two common ones are helping a suspect or lying. Tampering or destroying evidence is also considered a crime against the justice system. Although it must be proven that a person knowingly tampered with evidence in order to disrupt the process of justice, it is nonetheless possible to be charged with tampering of evidence. An attorney who handles criminal defense can represent clients in court to argue that the act was done unintentionally. If found guilty of this offense, punishment can be severe, including jail time.
Harming or Threatening a Law Enforcement Official
Also known as assault and/or battery, willfully harming or threatening a police officer is considered a crime against servants of the court and subject to punishment. Depending on the circumstances and extent of injury to the law enforcement official, a criminal defense attorney advises that penalties can include high fines, restitution, and imprisonment.
Jury Duty Fraud
If an individual is discovered to have purposely lied about a hardship excuse to avoid jury duty, such an act can lead to serious consequences. Failure to report for jury duty or lying to get out of it are punishable by fines, imprisonment, and more.
It is important for someone who has already committed an offense to know that some of their subsequent actions could lead to additional charges and punishment. Criminal defense attorneys warn that doing anything that could be considered a crime against the justice system could only make things worse for a defendant. A person who has been charged with such a crime should speak to an experienced criminal defense attorney who will investigate the circumstances and advise how it should be handled for best results. The best choice is to be aware of the above actions – and not be guilty of committing any of them.
Reynaldo G. Garza, III
680 E. St Charles, Suite 600
Brownsville TX 78520