How do arrests work in the federal system?

The federal system requires that you be indicted, it’s one of your rights. And that means that information is presented to a grand jury of typically 20 or more people, who determine whether or not the government has mustered together enough information to arrest you with probably cause. Another way is for you to simply waive indictment and agree to what’s known as an information. That allows the government to process you a little bit differently and provides the government certain advantages in not wasting time with a grand jury presentment, and that may work to your benefit if you’re offered the opportunity to waive indictment. I don’t necessarily recommended that, but it is a consideration. And the last way, is a thing called a criminal complaint. In a criminal complaint, the information’s put together, an arrest warrant issued, and you are processed into the system in that way.

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