Legal Question in Criminal Law in New York

I didn't tell the truth on a police statement. I spoke to an Attorney who told me when I was subpoenaed to court to contact him and he would be there for me. I have been trying to contact him for two days with no results. I have court in 2 days. Lawyers are scare in my area and I don't know what to do. I don't want to walk into the court without a lawyer.

Asked on 4/24/12, 4:18 pm

2 Answers from Attorneys

S. MICHAEL MUSA-OBREGON NY Musa-Obregon & Associates

If you think you will be accused of making a false statement, you should definitely go with a lawyer. However, a subpoena is often for a witness and not a subject or target of an investigation. Consult with an attorney right away to see why you are being summoned. You have many rights including the right to plead the fifth amendment from self-incrimination. Whether you want to do that is a matter of strategy after discussing that with your lawyer. Please contact us immediately at 718-803-1000 for more information or representation.

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Answered on 4/24/12, 4:39 pm
Emile Barton Law Offices of Emile J. Barton

Have you been told that you are the subject of an investigation concerning some crime? Or are you being subpoenaed as a witness to provide testimony regarding a legal matter? If you are the target of an investigation and are directly implicated in a criminal matter, you would have the right to assert your 5th Amendment right against self-incrimination and would not have to answer any questions regarding the matter. However, if you are not implicated in a criminal matter, then you may not assert the right. You may be compelled by a material witness order to provide truthful testimony where others are implicated in a crime the investigation of a criminal matter provided that your testimony is deemed material and relevant. You are not obligated to provide testimony, but can be held in contempt of court and jailed until you are willing to comply with a judge's order to provide testimony regarding the actions of those who have been implicated in a crime. You may also be offered some form of immunity in return for your material and relevant testimony. You need an experienced attorney.

Also, Did you officially retain the attorney who agreed to accompany you? If so, then the attorney would be obligated to appear on your behalf. If not, then the attorney is under no obligation to make an appearance on your behalf.

In any event, you should not appear in court and answer any questions without the presence of an experienced attorney if you believe that you could be charged with giving a false statement.

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Answered on 4/25/12, 9:17 am

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