What is a Plea Bargain?
A criminal lawyer Newark defendants turn to from Rispoli & Borneo, P.C. may be able to reduce your charges through plea bargaining. Plea bargaining is a fairly controversial part of the criminal justice system, but there are many reasons why many defendants seek them. In certain cases, a plea bargain can be beneficial for all parties involved. However, it’s important to know that there are serious consequences involved with any plea bargain. If you’re facing criminal charges and you’re considering a plea bargain, you’ll likely want to talk with a criminal lawyer in Newark from our firm for more information about how it could affect your future. In the meantime, here’s a brief look at what the plea bargaining process entails.
Plea Bargains: What Are They?
A plea bargain is essentially an agreement between the criminal lawyer Newark locals choose to represent them and the prosecution before a case goes to trial. In a plea bargain, the defendant pleads guilty (or “no contest”) to the charges, and the prosecuting attorney gives the defendant something in exchange, such as dropping one or more of the charges or reducing one or more of the charges. The exact exchange depends heavily on the circumstances of the case. You will need to consult a Newark criminal lawyer to learn more about the possibility of a plea bargain for your case.
Why are plea bargains arranged?
There are several reasons why defendants and prosecutors may choose to engage in plea bargaining. A criminal case can take weeks, months, or even years to go to trial. Once it goes to trial, the case can last for days, weeks, or months. All of this costs a great deal of time and money for both sides. For a prosecutor, a plea bargain is a way to save time and money while still obtaining a guilty verdict which is a win for them.
Plea bargains may also be beneficial for defendants who know that they are guilty of the charges and do not wish to go through a court trial. Defendants facing multiple charges and/or serious sentencing might find that a plea bargain is beneficial. While legislation dictates how plea bargains are made, the exact terms of the agreement are up to the discretion of the defense and prosecuting attorneys.
Are there drawbacks to plea bargains?
Plea bargains are clearly beneficial for prosecutors, but they might not always be beneficial for defendants. One of the biggest criticisms of plea bargains is that innocent defendants might be persuaded to agree to a plea bargain. Despite the fact that the Constitution guarantees all Americans the right to a speedy trial, the current criminal justice system is very backed up and it can take years for a case to go to trial. Defendants who cannot post bail can end up spending those years in jail — despite their innocence — and pleading guilty could allow them to get out of jail sooner than awaiting trial. Unfortunately, though they might ultimately spend less time in jail, they also end up with a criminal record that they do not deserve.
What are the consequences of a plea bargain?
As an experienced criminal lawyer Newark community members rely on might tell you, a plea bargain is not something to enter into without considering all of your options. If you are certain that you would end up with a guilty verdict in a courtroom case, a plea bargain might be a wise choice. However, it’s important to remember that it will result in a criminal record. Before agreeing to any plea bargain, be sure to contact a criminal lawyer Newark residents recommend for legal counsel. If you are innocent, you certainly do not deserve to have these charges on your record. Call Rispoli & Borneo, P.C. at (908) 353-0800 to speak with a criminal lawyer Newark offers and who can provide you with a free consultation.