What is a plea bargain?
Everyone hears about plea bargains. They’re usually not bargains. But a plea bargain is simply an agreement as to the parameters of somebody entering a plea of guilty or in some cases nolo contendre. It’ll determine a lot of the factors that go into what the ultimate sentence or resolution of your case will be. For example, what charges you’re pleading to, what the appropriate sentencing guidelines are, what the recommendations will be. Whether there’ll be an appeal waiver or not. What is your role in the offense that is charged. Were you a leader? Were you a manager? Were you an organizer? Was it sophisticated? Was it a breach of a fiduciary duty? Those are just a few of the things that come into play.
In addition, the aspects of a plea consider the victims. Is the victim the United States government? Are there individuals who lost money because of fraud? There’s so many factors it’s impossible to discuss now, other than to say that an experienced criminal defense lawyer is critical in negotiating the best possible plea bargain, if you will, or plea agreement which is what I like to call it, on your behalf. It is the most important document in your case.