Appealing a Criminal Sentence in Court

Types of human rights violations

What to do if I am unjustly convicted?

Every defendant has the right to file a post-conviction appeal. But it is important to take into considerationgrounds for sentencing. If the defendant admitted his guilt, but does not agree with the sentence, for example, he can appeal only if the court permits it. If the sentence was handed down on the basis of the investigation, then there are no barriers to appeal. You also need to understand that the appeal - this is not a retrial of your case, but appeal the court's decision in a higher court to review the case.

How is consideration of the appeal?

A defendant who wishes to appeal, but rather his attorney, must submit to the appellate court "briefs", as well as the copy of the decision of the court of first instance, all records (transcripts) and all the evidence taken into account in sentencing. Also, there are may be need some verbal explanation in the case. They should be short, but informative.
To be honest, judicial review of the sentence is very similar to a review of a football match. That is here looking for errors that made the judge during the hearing. If there are a lot of errors, then, of course, it is concluded they have affected the outcome of the case. At the same time «harmless errors» are not taken in mind.

Types of human rights violations

Upon an appeal, the defender can claim that the judicial process was conducted with inadequate compliance of the principles of procedural and substantive law. In this article we will explain what it means.Procedural Due Process includes guarantees set out in the Constitution of USA, such as the right to own attorney (if you have the ability to pay for services on their own), the right to a free lawyer (appointed for indigent defendants), the right to remain silent (so as not to compromise himself) the right to a preliminary hearing, the right to cross-examine witnesses, etc.Substantive Due Process is an inability to take somebody’s life, somebody’s liberty, or somebody’s property rights without compelling evidence of his guilt. Deprivation of the right to prove his innocence is also a violation of the rights of the defendant

What should I do if I lose the appeal?

Under the existing law an appeal may be supplied a few times. The first level of the court of appeal is an intermediate-level appellate court. If, after consideration of the appeal, you were refused to review the case, you can apply to the State Supreme Court. It is important to know that before the next application for an appeal you have to obtain a permit. If your attorney is sure that during the trial federal constitutional laws were violated, then you can apply to federal court. But there are must be very strong evidences; otherwise your appeal will be rejected even without consideration of the case.

What should I do if my appeal will approve?

To win an appeal is a pleasant event that can be overshadowed by one circumstance. The prosecutor has the right to appeal too, then you may face new term. But there is a way out of this situation, when the prosecutor offers to plead guilty with a sentence of «time served». If you agree to this proposal, the probability to get out of prison sooner increases. If the defendant insists on his innocence, the prosecutor would insist on the necessity of imprisonment. If the prosecutor wins the case, the period spent in prison will not be included in the new prison term.

Can the prosecutor to drop the charges?

If you are lucky and good luck smiles to you, the prosecutor may refuse charges after an appeal. But such cases are rare. For example, if the appellate court finds that some evidences and testimonies cannot be used in court to adopt a guilty verdict and there are no other evidences.

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