Rule 35 Motions

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Rule 35 Motions

Under U.S.S.G. § 5K1.1 or Rule 35 of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure (“Rule 35 Motions”), a sentencing judge may reduce a sentence upon motion of the government stating that the defendant has given substantial assistance in the investigation or prosecution of another person who has committed an offense. Substantial assistance can involve a person giving verbal information, going undercover, agreeing to repeated debriefings with law enforcement officers, agreeing to meetings with prosecutors and defense attorneys, and testifying in court or testifying before a grand jury. In cases where a defendant offers substantial assistance to the government, the U.S. Attorney may also file a motion under 18 U.S.C. § 3553(e) allowing the sentencing judge to sentence the defendant below the statutorily-mandated minimum sentence at the time of sentencing.

Cooperating with the government is often the only way to obtain a reduced sentence after sentencing. Do not let your friend or loved one rot away in federal prison. If you have information about crimes committed by other individuals, consider cooperating so you or your loved on can receive a sentence reduction.

How a Defendant Gives Cooperation Assistance

The process by which a defendant gives cooperation to the government usually begins with a meeting between the defendant, the prosecutor, the agents involved in the investigation, and the defendant’s attorney. These meetings are essentially de-briefing sessions and are called “proffer sessions.” In these sessions, the defendant usually shows the prosecutor that they have valuable information to offer about the case. Statements given during a proffer session are typically prevented from being used against the defendant later.

If the person who is providing the information is already incarcerated, the person’s  attorney will make a proffer about the information the defendant would convey. If the government is interested in the information, federal agents may travel to the prison and secretly meet with the prisoner.

Timeline For Rule 35 Motions

The amount of time it takes for a person to receive a cooperation reduction differs with each case. Generally, though, a Rule 35 motion will not be submitted until federal agents have completed their investigation of information provided. Some federal prosecutors will not file a Rule 35 motion until after the target of the information has been prosecuted. The entire process usually takes several months, and requires back and forth contact between the Firm, the federal prosecutor assigned to the case, the agent who is investigating, and the Client.

Contact Us Today

We offer a free initial consultation for all cooperation matters. Let us assess how we may be able to help you or your loved get a sentence reduction through a motion under U.S.S.G. § 5K1.1 or Rule 35.

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