Federal Criminal Defense The Right Way.

San Francisco, San Jose and Oakland federal courts are not places to learn how to practice federal criminal law. Federal criminal defense attorneys who obtain the best results for their clients emphasize federal work in their practice, apply decades of federal experience to developing facts and law to maximum advantage, and devote their time and efforts to what really matters during a federal investigation.

An AV–rated Palo Alto attorney, Lee Altschuler's approach builds on experience in virtually every kind of matter: high tech (computer crime, trade secrets, intellectual property, export and Internet matters); fraud (identity theft, deprivation of "honest services" in mail or wire frauds, bribery, embezzlement, credit cards, and other white collar offenses); regulatory matters (antitrust, tax, money laundering, securities, health care; immigration and government contracts); integrity in federal matters (obstruction of justice, obstruction of a federal officer, and false statements and false reporting); and a host of matters including firearms and ammunition, customs cases, and violent crimes on government property, on the high seas, and related to air travel.

Beyond federal experience in San Francisco, San Jose and Oakland, Lee is dedicated to provide you with a critical and realistic understanding of your situation, thoughtful choices at every step, and a defense based on your unique circumstances. The following principles guide his practice of law:

  • Head off the filing of charges whenever possible.
  • Master all available evidence. This means convincing third parties to voluntarily share evidence; using the legal process to obtain records; and aggressively seeking court orders requiring the government to turn over exculpatory, helpful and relevant evidence.
  • Challenge all damaging evidence. Especially when the prosecution relies on informants, "cooperating witnesses" and warrantless seizures, aggressive and thoughtful motion practice can dramatically affect the outcome.
  • Tell the better side of the story when convincing the government not to file charges, negotiating a disposition or trying the case. If necessary, engage well-respected expert witnesses to assist in putting the truth forward.
  • Consider all possible ways to settle a case. Deciding how to resolve a case is the client's right. Making sure the client has the best options to consider is the lawyer's duty. If a case is charged (and not all are), then the ability and willingness to try the case has inestimable value in developing options.
  • Respect all client needs. Answering legal questions without jargon, considering non-legal consequences (employment and future employability, licensure, reputation, and civil consequences for example), and spending the necessary time for the client to make the right decision are a must for effective representation.
  • Always ensure a prompt and full exchange of information with the client. This is non-negotiable. Arrange early morning, evening or weekend appointments if necessary. Share all news. Ongoing telephone calls, personal meetings, and secure e-mails are a fixture of every case.