The Law Office of Frank Ciardi

Criminal Defense Legal Blog

Should Criminal Intent Matter with Sexual Assault?

Should Criminal Intent Matter with Sexual Assault?

In New York, criminal intent usually doesn’t matter in sexual assault, rape, or sexual battery prosecutions. All these infractions are basically the same offense. The intent is a requirement in forcible touching, which is a misdemeanor. The defendant must sexually...

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When Should You Go with a Court-Appointed Defense Lawyer?

When Should You Go with a Court-Appointed Defense Lawyer?

Going with a court-appointed defense lawyer is usually a mistake, but it’s not terrible. Tales of overworked court-appointed lawyers occasionally appear in media stories. This overwork is more common in the post-coronavirus era.[1] More than two years after lockdowns...

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What’s the Difference Between Criminal and Civil Law?

What’s the Difference Between Criminal and Civil Law?

The burden of proof is the biggest difference between criminal and civil law. Plaintiffs must prove personal injury and other civil cases by a preponderance of the evidence, or more likely than not.1 Prosecutors must prove assault, murder, and other criminal cases...

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What is Aiding and Abetting?

What is Aiding and Abetting?

About a half-dozen co-conspirators assisted John Wilkes Booth when he assassinated President Abraham Lincoln in April 1865.1 Many probably didn't know all the details of Booth's plans, but they were still punished harshly for aiding and abetting. Mary Surratt ran the...

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Types of Defenses in Criminal Law

Types of Defenses in Criminal Law

Statistically, there’s no effective defense in any criminal law case. Prosecutors have about a 95 percent conviction rate.[1] However, this number is deceptive. Nearly all of these convictions are plea bargains. If a criminal case goes to trial, the conviction rate is...

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