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Maryland Federal Criminal Judges

Maryland federal judges are assigned a rotation, taking turns and hearing different kinds of cases (e.g criminal, fraud, immigration). The judge that presides over your trial depends on when the case is brought to the court and what judge is on duty assignment at that particular point.

Due to the rotating nature of their assignments, their varied experiences and viewpoints, and the severity of sentencing, an experienced Maryland federal criminal lawyer can help you put together the best defense for your case and prepare you for what will take place at trial.

Difference Between State and Federal Judges

Federal judges give stricter sentences than state judges because the federal sentencing system relies on federal sentencing guidelines. Often, those guidelines are much more significant and strict than at the state level.

When the federal government hears criminal cases, they are very serious criminal cases. For example, a federal judge will not get a Possession of Drugs with Intent to Distribute case. That is a small level state case even if it is a felony. A criminal federal judge might hear a drug trafficker’s kingpin’s case, due to its severity, and the penalties are more serious.

Maryland federal criminal judges also have an obligation to give the defendants mandatory minimum sentences. The judges do not have a choice to opt out of the minimum sentences, even if they believe the punishment is not appropriate for the crime. This is due to the statute and sentencing guidelines the judges are required to follow

Experiences of Federal Judges

The most important thing people should know about federal judges is that federal judges have a great deal of experience handling criminal cases. Usually federal judges have been appointed by a US President after extensive screening based on their experience. Their experience is generally gained in a government agency, as a prosecutor, or as a defense attorney, partnered with a lengthy history of academic excellence and experience handling a wide range of legal matters.

No judge has experience in every arena and you may come before a judge who never practiced criminal law and requires a far greater explanation from a criminal defense attorney’s argument that an experienced criminal judge would not require. Judges have access to extensive resources, research, and people who can advise on how to make the right decisions. No judge has the same viewpoint or opinion on every criminal case.

How an Attorney can Help

There is a great deal that an experienced local attorney can help their client understand about the judge’s knowledge of a particular area of law.  Based on their own experience with a particular judge, that judge’s track record, history, employment history, and more the attorney can advise a client on how a judge might respond to particular argument.
With an experienced defense lawyer and an understanding of the Maryland federal criminal judge, an individual can work with the attorney to build the best possible defense for a particular judge.

Maryland Federal Criminal Trials