Defenses in Criminal Cases

California law provides for many defenses that can be brought before trial or at trial in a criminal case. Some of the defenses are commonly asserted, while other defenses are relatively rare.

The most common defenses used in criminal cases in California include:

  • the statute of limitations;
  • the right to a speedy trial;
  • prohibitions against double jeopardy;
  • the dual punishment ban;
  • lack of jurisdiction;
  • inappropriate venue;
  • suppressing evidence after an unlawful search and seizures;
  • suppressing statements because of the failure to read Miranda warnings;
  • motions to dismiss for insufficient evidence;
  • the exclusion of privileged statements; and
  • first amendment protections for crimes that restrict the right to free speech.

Ventura Defense Attorney

If you were accused of a crime, then contact Jay Leiderman to discuss the pending charges, the possible penalties, and the best defenses that apply.

Since 2006, Jay Leiderman has earned the designation as a board-certified specialist in criminal law from the California Bar’s Board of Legal Specialization. An experienced criminal defense attorney might spot important defenses that could otherwise be overlooked.

Call (805) 654-0200 today for a free consultation.

California’s Ban on a Dual Punishment

The dual punishment ban codified in section 654 provides that “[a]n act or omission that is punishable in different ways by different provisions of law shall be punished under the provision that provides for the longest potential term of imprisonment, but in no case shall the act or omission be punished under more than one provision.”

The purpose of the ban is to improve the congruity between punishment and culpability. See People v. Sanders (2012) 55 Cal.4th 731, 742, 149 Cal.Rptr.3d 26, 288 P.3d 83.

Where there is separate punishment for multiple offenses arising out of a single course of conduct, the appellate court’s review whether substantial evidence supports a trial court’s finding that the defendant formed a separate intent and objective for each crime. See People v. Capistrano (2014) 59 Cal.4th 830, 886, 176 Cal.Rptr.3d 27, 331 P.3d 201.