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Is a guilty plea a criminal defense strategy in some cases?

If a Florida resident is charged with a crime, it's understandable that he or she would want to fight against the formal accusations in court. In some situations, however, a criminal defense attorney might advise a particular client to plead guilty to some part or all of the charges on file. While it might not seem logical to someone with no legal background, in some circumstances a guilty plea may be the most viable option.

One man recently pleaded guilty to attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction. Interestingly, he merely believed (reportedly without having concrete proof) that the device given to him by another party was indeed a bombing device. He admitted that he intended to use it to blow up a Jewish synagogue in the area.

The 41-year-old man said not only did he plan to destroy the synagogue, but he carried the item he thought was a bomb right up to the premises, intending to blow up the building. U. S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions made public comments regarding bigotry and hate crimes in connection with the incident. Prosecutors said the alleged bombing device was given to the man in question by a terrorist task force.

After a person enters a guilty plea as part of a criminal defense plan, the next step is usually to prepare for a sentencing hearing. This is another time when an experienced Florida defense attorney can be very influential. If an attorney is successful, the sentence handed down may be at the lower end of the federal sentencing guidelines for a particular criminal offense. 

Source: forward.com, "Florida Synagogue Bomber Pleads Guilty To 'Evil' Crime", Aug. 16, 2017

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