Anne Bishop, P. O. Box 313, Gainesville, GA 30503 (770) 783-5296

A. Bishop Law, LLC

Difference Between Federal versus State Criminal Charges: Georgia Criminal Defense Lawyer

Generally speaking, the Federal courts handle violations of Federal Law and are selective when choosing whether to prosecute violations of both State and Federal Law.

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A common misconception regarding State and Federal crimes is that the Federal courts handle the more severe crimes and the State handles lesser crimes.  This is not necessarily true.

1.  Federal Courts Jurisdiction: Federal Courts deal with violation of only Federal Law, as well as those violation that are a violation of both State and Federal Law.  If a violation of law is both Federal and State, then the Federal prosecutor can pick and choose cases.  A good example would be a big drug bust by a Georgia County Sheriff which would be prosecuted by the local Georgia prosecutor or could be “taken Federal” for prosecution.  If an act is a violation of only Federal Law, it would not be handled in the State jurisdiction.  Primarily, the Federal authorities main focuses are terrorism, firearms, big drug operations , robbery of federally insured banks (all banks are FDIC), and crimes that occur across multiple states (serial killers, kidnappings).

2. Georgia State Jurisdiction: Georgia jurisdiction for the State judicial system deals with a vast majority of crimes that are committed in Georgia: murder, DUI, robbery, battery, etc.  These common crimes are violations of State law and under the theory of Federalism and State’s Rights, the States are in a better position to deal with local crimes.

3.  Federal Selectivity: Federal prosecutors many times have discretion on whether they want to leave a case in the State judicial system or take over the matter and handle it in Federal Court.  This decision is based upon many factors including: the scope and size of the criminal activity, the current priorities of the federal government and public knowledge and awareness of the particular case or type of offense.

4.  Sentencing: Federal Law does not allow for parole.  Generally speaking, Federal convictions tend to be longer in the legal sentencing from the Court and the defendant stays in jail much longer.

At A. Bishop Law, our Georgia Criminal Defense Attorney welcomes questions on Criminal Defense laws, Traffic Laws and Georgia DUI laws. Please Call or Email us with any questions.

About the attorney:  Anne Bishop is a Georgia Lawyer with A. Bishop Law in Gainesville, Georgia and handles various DUI / DWIMarijuana Arrests and other Georgia Criminal Defense matters.  The law office of A. Bishop Law can assist clients throughout Georgia including: Hall County (Gainesville, OakwoodFlowery Branch), Jackson County  (Jefferson, Braselton) White County (Helen, Cleveland), Lumpkin County (Dahlonega), Dawson County (Dawsonville), Habersham County (Demorest, Cornelia), and all of Northeast Georgia.

This article and/or video should not be considered nor relied upon as legal advice since it is only intended for general overview and informational purposes. Please consult with an attorney on your specific situation in order to determine an appropriate legal course of action.

Anne Bishop
A. Bishop Law, LLC
Attorney at Law
539 Green Street NW
Phone: (770) 783-5296