FEDERAL CASE SUCCESS STORIES
On February 28, 2013, a client H.F. was acquitted in federal court of ALL 54 charges of money laundering and obstruction of justice relating to a Ponzi-type scheme that allegedly involved more than $830 million in investor losses. Val Rodriguez represented a defendant who had a 15 year long domestic relationship with one of the principals of Mutual Benefits Corporation, which handled viatical investments from about 1994 to 2004. The Government argued that the Defendant was guilty because he allegedly assisted the principal in carrying out a rather complex scheme of money laundering to avoid paying an SEC judgment. This victory sent shock waves in the U.S. Attorney’s Office, because the trial lasted over a month in Miami, involved dozens of witnesses and hundred of exhibits. See Section on Verdicts.
Val has handled federal criminal cases for over 15 years and has handled well over 200 federal cases to completion. He originally joined a panel of the Criminal Justice Act in 1998 and has been assigned federal cases regularly since that time. He has successfully defended several clients in federal court on drug offense charges, resulting in acquittals and hung juries. He has handled all sorts of complex federal criminal cases, as well as appeals.
Other federal criminal case success stories:
J.W. had his sentence reduced from 15.6 years to TIME SERVED once Val Rodriguez argued to a federal judge that a subsequent change in the law required a drastic re-sentencing for the defendant, who had previously been considered a career offender.
M.V. was acquitted in 2000 of all charges involving a federal conspiracy to traffick heroin. His defense is that he was set up by a friend to be a drug courier when he did not have the intent to do so.
J.S. and all co-defendants were acquitted in 2000 of federal drug conspiracy charges when their wooden freighter that docked in the Port of Palm Beach for repairs was raided by Customs officers. Found hidden in the boat was over 20 kilograms of power cocaine. His defense was that he was a poor shipmate that had no knowledge of the hidden cocaine.
H.S. was acquitted of a federal robbery conspiracy where it was alleged that, as a part of the conspiracy (under the Hobbs Act) he had killed a security guard at a hotel in West Palm Beach along with his two half-brothers. The jury found that, despite the testimony of the two cooperating witnesses (his own half brothers), there was not enough evidence to convict him of causing the death of the security guard. H.S. was saved from a mandatory life sentence.
Val Rodriguez has also obtained favorable results in terms of mistrials when a federal jury has not been able to reach a verdict.
In terms of sentencing, Val Rodriguez has achieved remarkable results for lowered federal sentences under the Safety Valve (for narcotics cases involving first time offenders with no criminal record), and variances below the advisory guideline ranges.
In addition, Val Rodriguez has handled dozens of Rule 35 proceedings where federal prison sentences have been reduced drastically due to cooperation and substantial assistance. In fact, some clients have had sentences reduced to time served, probation, or as much as 50% of the sentence reduced.
A list of all federal criminal case results is available for review.