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UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT

Northern District of Texas

Barbara M.G. Lynn, Chief Judge
Karen Mitchell, Clerk of Court

Chapter IV. Basic Steps of a Federal Criminal Case

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The following outlines the basic steps of a federal criminal case. A notation of where each step is addressed in the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure or the United States Code is also included, if appropriate.

  1. Charge - complaint, information or indictment - (Rules 3 & 7, Fed. R. Crim. P.)
  2. Arrest or Summons - (Rule 4, Fed. R. Crim. P.)
  3. Appearance Before a U.S. Magistrate Judge - (Rule 5, Fed. R. Crim. P.)
  4. Probable Cause Hearing - if no indictment - (Rule 5.1, Fed. R. Crim. P.)
  5. Bond/Detention Decision - (18 U.S.C. §3142)
  6. Detention Hearing - (18 U.S.C. §3142(e)(f)(g))
  7. Arraignment - (Rule 10, Fed. R. Crim. P.)
  8. Motions/Subpoenas/Discovery Phase - (Rules 12 - 17, Fed. R. Crim. P.)
  9. Motions Hearing - rare
  10. Pretrial Conference - (Rule 17.1, Fed. R. Crim. P.)
  11. Rearraignment, Guilty Plea/Trial - not guilty plea - (Rule 11, 23 - 31, Fed. R. Crim. P.)
  12. Motion for New Trial - (Rule 33, Fed. R. Crim. P.)
  13. Presentence Report Interview
  14. Presentence Report - 14 day mandatory response time - (Rule 32, Fed. R. Crim. P.)
  15. Presentence Report Addendum - (Rule 32, Fed. R. Crim. P.)
  16. Presentence Report Addendum Objections - (Rule 32, Fed. R. Crim. P.)
  17. Sentencing - (Rule 32, Fed. R. Crim. P.)
  18. Self-Reporting
  19. Probation/Supervised Release Proceedings - (Rule 32.1)
  20. Appeal - 10 days from date of entry of judgment - (Rule 4(b), Fed. R. App. P.)
  21. Certiorari Petition (Rules of the Supreme Court, Part III)
  22. Post Conviction Motions - (28 U.S.C. §2255 and Rules Governing §2255 Proceedings)
  23. Presidential Pardon

 

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