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DOJ Defendant

Involved in a DOJ Investigation?  Are You a DOJ Defendant, Witness, or Target? -- What You Need to Know

Are you participating in, or considering participating in a Department of Justice investigation?  If so, then it is important to understand the process of the investigation and your potential role in it.  There a number of different roles you can play in an investigation, and sometimes those roles may shift.  Let’s take a look at the process of a DOJ investigation and the roles played by the DOJ defendant, witness, and target.

If the DOJ obtains or is provided with information about a federal crime, then the DOJ may begin an investigation. The individuals or company who are suspected of having committed the crime are referred to as the “target” or targets of the investigation.

A DOJ witness is a person who the DOJ questions about the circumstances surrounding the potential criminal activity -- this may be someone entirely innocent of the crime, or it may be someone who is connected to the activity but is cooperating with the DOJ.  The DOJ may at some point in the investigation consider a witness to be innocent, but as evidence is uncovered that witness could become a target of the investigation.  Likewise, the investigation may reveal a suspected target to be innocent.

If the DOJ becomes convinced by the available evidence that an individual or company has committed a crime, then that person or company may be offered a plea agreement.  If the plea is accepted and presented to the court, then that person or company officially becomes a DOJ defendant.

If you are participating in a DOJ investigation, even as just a DOJ witness, you could be or end up becoming a target of the investigation.  If you are a DOJ defendant or believe that you might become one, you may want to consider consulting an experienced attorney who to represent you in the DOJ investigation.

If you are involved in a DOJ or SEC investigation involving securities fraud or corporate crime, please feel free to call The Pickholz Law Offices today at 347-746-1222.

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Jason Pickholz -

The Pickholz Law Offices represents U.S. and international clients in securities and white collar cases. The Firm has helped whistleblowers report frauds to the SEC, CFTC, and IRS, and has defended clients in investigations by the SEC, CFTC, DOJ, FINRA, and other financial and securities enforcement regulators.

The Firm’s founder, Jason Pickholz, is the author of the two-volume book Securities Crimes, has appeared on tv and radio, and has taught continuing legal education courses. A former BigLaw partner, he has been representing clients in financial and securities fraud cases since 1995. In recognition of his many achievements, Mr. Pickholz was elected by his legal peers to be a Fellow of The New York Bar Foundation, an honor limited to just 1% of all attorneys in the New York State Bar Association.

Mr. Pickholz has been counsel in many high-profile cases. He was the first attorney ever to win an SEC whistleblower award on appeal to the Commission, which Inside Counsel magazine called one of the five key events in the history of the SEC whistleblower program. On the defense side, Mr. Pickholz has defended clients in the SEC’s COVID-19 investigations, the CFTC’s cryptocurrency cases, and a former US Senator, among others.

If you want to speak with a CFTC, IRS, or SEC whistleblower lawyer, or with a white collar defense lawyer, you can call the Firm at 347-746-1222.

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