“The prosecutor charged me with one crime, but then at the next court appearance a month later, he is suddenly saying that I am guilty of another crime. Can he do that? I mean, what’s he going to charge me with next?”


Criminal Lawyers Buffalo NY
Criminal Defense Attorney Buffalo NY

Under New York law, after originally filing a local accusatory instrument, such as a misdemeanor information, the prosecutor may later file a superseding instrument charging a different offense, or even alleging facts different from the original charges.

The effect of filing a “superseding instrument” is that the original charge is dismissed and replaced with the new charge. Under New York’s CPL 100.50 the prosecutor has the authority to file a superseding accusatory instrument. In fact, as one court in New York opined, “The District Attorney has virtually unfettered discretion in deciding whether, whom and how to prosecute and limitations on that power are not to be presumed by implication.” In other words, the prosecution has a great deal of discretion.

Criminal attorney buffalo ny should also know under New York’s CPL 100.50, a superseding information may be filed in local court. The superseding information may include charges not included in the original information. Under New York’s CPL 100.50, only an information, a prosecutor’s information and misdemeanor complaint may be superseded by another information or prosecutor’s information. In other words, one limitation on the prosecutor’s discretion is in the case of a traffic information, which cannot be superseded.

As noted in the traffic information example, the prosecutor does not have unlimited discretion. Where the prosecutor files a new information and charges the same offense but with an altered theory, the new information did not qualify as a superseding information.

Based on the facts in the case you have described, as criminal attorney buffalo ny know, it is possible that the prosecutor can continue to charge you with new crimes. However, this would depend on the so called “30-30” time limits. The People are under an obligation to declare trial readiness within a certain period of time, so eventually this could be problematic, and following a motion by your criminal attorney buffalo ny the charges could be dismissed. Although given the complicated nature of the 30-30 time limits (i.e. what time counts; what time doesn’t count; when the time starts; etc), that topic, while very related to the topic at hand, is outside the scope of this entry.

Again, if you find yourself going through the criminal process, it is very important to find lawyers in buffalo ny free consultation

Please be advised, this is not legal advice. For a free consultation, contact a Family Lawyer Niagara Falls ny, criminal lawyer buffalo ny, Criminal Lawyer Niagara Falls NY, or Criminal Attorney Niagara Falls NY.

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