What Is a Criminal Defense Investigator?
What is a criminal defense investigator? A private investigator, an investigator, a security guard, a private detective or investigation agent, is someone who may be employed by people, companies or NGOs to undertake investigative services. Private investigators are often involved in either criminal or civil cases. They investigate crimes that happened in the public or private sector. These include murder, theft, child pornography, fraud, surveillance, disappearance and many other crimes.
Private investigators specialise in different kinds of investigations. Some specialize in intellectual property crime such as stealing software and designs from the corporations. Others specialize in financial crime such as embezzlement, money laundering and fraud. In addition, there are also private investigators who investigate crimes against children.
Besides private investigators, there are other ways of investigating crimes beyond the reach of the police or legal system. Informers are another way of gathering evidence and information about criminal activities. Informants can include former employees of a company who tend to give juicy details about their former employers. Motive informers are people like family, friends, neighbours and colleagues who can give the police valuable leads regarding criminal activities. Lastly, informers may be corporate or government employees who obtain sensitive information or evidence from their place of work or from confidential sources.
Other countries employ private investigators besides US agencies. In Australia, there are private investigators who offer criminal defence and white collar criminal law as a service to corporations and organisations. In Canada, there are also private investigators available who offer information and intelligence services to government and regulatory bodies. These investigators are considered to be in the same category as private investigators and hence, they may also be referred to as private investigators.
Aside from providing investigative services, these investigators also provide court-appointed advocates who will defend the accused in criminal proceedings. As may be expected, there are various levels of an investigator’s job. One level involves conducting routine surveillance and gathering information. The next level entails developing case strategies, interviewing witnesses and carrying out thorough investigations.
Private investigators may work on either a contingency basis or on a salary basis. Companies and governments may hire one person to do the investigation and the other to carry out the associated duties. This arrangement may create an opportunity for an investigator to develop a relationship with a client. The latter is most common with corporate companies that have employees working in different departments at the same time. These employers often use private investigators to handle their corporate cases because they lack the resources to hire a full-time in-house investigator.
Aside from corporate employers, government agencies may utilize the services of a criminal defense investigator. Agencies such as the FBI, CIA and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms often turn to private investigators when they need to gather evidence against individuals suspected of committing serious crimes. As may be expected, a criminal defense attorney is an investigator as well. The two types of investigators specialize in different areas of criminal law. One specializes in white collar crime, while the other specializes in black collar crime.
Private investigators may be needed when prosecuting someone involved in a serious crime, such as drug possession or manufacture. Additionally, they may be needed when an individual is suspected of committing a crime, and he or she must be investigated. These days, anyone can become a criminal defense investigator.
If you want to work as an investigator, then you should obtain at least a bachelor’s degree. Most states require at least a four year college degree, but some only require a high school diploma. Your choice of college will affect what is required for this job. For example, if you are interested in working with forensic evidence, you will need to have a doctoral degree or an equivalent certificate. Some states also require that an investigator who works for a defense attorney has already taken an examination that qualifies him or her to be a professional investigator.
If you are interested in working as an investigator for the government, then your educational background will play a vital role in your job search. As mentioned before, most states require an investigator to be at least a graduate student. Therefore, you must make certain that any college you apply to be fully accredited. In addition to being accredited, you must also meet all state and federal employment requirements.
What is a criminal defense investigator? The answer to that question varies from state to state and even case to case. However, you generally have two major responsibilities when working as an investigator. First, you will review and collect substantial evidence and documents related to the crime that you are investigating. Second, you will work as an advocate for the client and help build a strong case for the defense.