Federal Criminal Search

Regardless of the information you need, the Federal Criminal Search is there to provide it.

federal criminal search

The Federal Criminal Search allows you to search for and access all criminal cases that are heard in federal courts. The Federal Criminal search offers you the option of searching for these criminal cases by district and even nationwide across all federal courts in the country.

Such cases that are considered federal cases are cases that involve violation of the federal criminal law. Such cases are cases of fraud, embezzlement, violation of immigration laws, kidnapping, arms violations, mail and wire fraud, tax evasion, postal offenses, and interstate trafficking of drugs. The cases that take place on federal property and those that are in violation of federal laws that have been set can be accessed using the Federal Criminal Search.

Key Features of Federal Criminal Search:

This search provides access to a wide range of information regarding federal cases. Such information is inclusive of the court information, case numbers, dates when the offense was committed, the disposition, parole, and release dates, as well as information on the charges facing the accused. The information on the charges is inclusive of the offense alleged to have been committed, the severity of the offense, disposition, as well as the sentence given for the particular offense.

The Federal Criminal Search has two levels of service for maximum efficiency:

A. Federal National Criminal Search.

This search allows access to information on federal cases in all districts. It offers a single search of all the Federal District Courts in the country for all the criminal proceedings that are within the Federal District Courts. The Federal Criminal Search allows you to access any information pertaining to federal cases in all the districts.

B. Federal Criminal District Search

This specific search allows you to search for and access the criminal proceedings that are within the Federal Districts Courts. This information is, however, based on either the specific districts where the applicant’s address history is located or all the districts in the entire state where the applicant has an address history. This level of service provides specific information that is reliant on the address history of the applicant.

The need for Federal Criminal Search:

The Federal Criminal Search allows employers to search for and access information pertaining to their employees as provided in the Federal Districts Courts. This information is inclusive of all states, and the information gathered from the search enables the employers to;

A. Protect the company’s brand by minimizing the chances of negligently hiring employees who have a criminal record. The hiring of people with a criminal record can be negative for the brand as it creates a bad image for the brand, and it can ultimately lead to lawsuits.

B. Provide a safe working environment. The search allows employers to pre-screen all potential employees to ensure that they are not a danger to the other staff members or to customers, if they are hired.

C. Reduction of fraud and theft by analyzing the risk management profiles of the qualified candidates. The employer is able to hire candidates who meet the risk management criteria for the position in the company .

Most federal cases are maintained electronically thus available for the public through Internet-based public access to court electronic Records service (PACER) from the 94 Federal District court jurisdictions. Court copies of Federal records can be obtained in the following ways;

1. Online

The records can be accessed through the internet from the pacer case locator, bankruptcy courts, district, and federal appellate by using the Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER) which is an electronic public access service and at a cost.

2. National Archives

Through the National Archives order the  Reproduction page, navigate to order reproductions and choose the option of court records, then select the appropriate court i.e. criminal, bankruptcy or civil.  To use this service an account must be set up by following the onscreen prompts before an order can be placed..

Steps in Federal Criminal Process:

A federal system has a specified way in which its criminal process proceeds. States have different court systems with specific rules for criminal cases. Some of the differences may include;

• Titles of people involved: The prosecutors or district attorneys bring state cases while Federal cases are usually brought by the United State attorneys.

• Federal cases are heard by the Federal Magistrate Judges but their decisions are reviewed by a District Court Judge..

• Grand juries are used in the Federal system to bring charges against a defendant. Some, but not all, states use grand juries.

• Punishment for persons found guilty vary from state to state and with the federal system. Most jurisdictions are following the system of assigning numerical values to crimes for the purpose of imposing guideline for punishment.

Key steps in the Federal criminal process.

1. Investigations conducted by federal law enforcement agents. Collection and presentation of information to the United States attorneys in the different districts are done by Criminal investigators from different agencies with federal jurisdiction.

2. Prosecutors decide if the case should be presented to the Grand Jury for indictment.

  1. Initial hearing and arrangement. A defendant is arrested and on the following day brought before a magistrate judge for an initial hearing on the case and to determine if the defendant will be allowed to remain free on bond during the case.
  2. The defense will engage in the constitutionally protected rights of the accused, including;
  • Discovery of evidence the prosecution intends to introduce at trial.• Plea bargaining• Preliminary hearing• Pre-trial motions• Trial• Post-trial motions• sentencing• appeal

    Crimes may be committed against the Federal Code or a State Code. Jurisdiction lies where the crime was committed and will be prosecuted in the appropriate courts.


    The difference between federal criminal history search and national criminal database is that the national criminal database collects all information from the district, county, state and federal levels whereas federal criminal searches take reports from federal district courts.

Hiring a seasoned investigator with appropriate and legal access to the records systems will provide the most cost-effective and reliable results.

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