Being charged with a federal crime is a serious matter and this is no different in California. Penalties can be extremely harsh for some federal offenses and conviction can have life-changing consequences. In fact, certain federal crimes still carry the death penalty, although the statutes in question are not always upheld.
Some federal crimes that can result in capital punishment include the following:
- being responsible for large-scale drug trafficking
- kidnapping which results in a death
According to this article on capital punishment, 60 federal offenses are covered by the death penalty. However, although such sentences do get passed from time to time, they do not always lead to the execution of the defendant. Debate ensues over the potential streamlining of the process as many worry that by speeding it up, the chance of innocents being executed may rise.
Conviction is always a worry as even hefty fines and prison sentences can seriously impact your life. However, a death sentence is in a completely different league. Your attorney can advise you about the likelihood of receiving such a sentence and may discuss the possibility of arranging a plea deal.
Every case is different, but it is important to remember that even if you have been charged, all is not lost. You are considered innocent under law unless proven guilty beyond any reasonable doubt. With the right support and a qualified defense you may be able to reduce your sentence or perhaps avoid conviction altogether.