In the last blog article, we discussed what you should do if you are served with a federal grand jury subpoena. But what should you do if, instead of a receiving a subpoena, you receive a "target letter?" In federal grand jury practice, a target letter typically informs the recipient that he or she is a target of a grand jury investigation and that a federal prosecutor has decided you are a potential defendant. In addition, the federal prosecutor has decided to "invite" you to appear before a federal grand jury and see if you will incriminate yourself! So, what should you do?
The answer is: RUN to your (criminal defense) lawyer! In other words, receiving a target letter, which informs you that you may be indicted on federal criminal charges, is a very serious matter! Your criminal defense attorney should be an attorney who is experienced in federal court and in dealing with federal prosecutors. An experienced criminal defense attorney will contact the federal prosecutor, find out what is going on, and attempt either to obtain some concessions from the government, or perhaps "decline" the "gracious" invitation to appear before the grand jury.
In any event, if you have received a grand jury target letter, it is absolutely imperative that you seek legal help as soon as possible! You have a target on your back and need an attorney!