Federal Criminal Defense in Miami
Available 24/7 305.340.2006

Motion to Sever

The purpose of motion to sever is to obtain permission of the Court, for defendants who are charged with the same crime to prove that a joint trial might be unfair. The importance of motion to sever argues that the defendant should be severed from the co-defendants name in the indictment, because of a lack of similarity between the defendants and charges.

All in all, the general rule in the Eleventh Circuit is that "defendants who are indicted together are usually tried together" ( United States v. Lopez, 649 F.3d 1222, 1234 (11 th Cir. 2011). This is true in conspiracy cases. However, severance is "warranted only when a defendant demonstrates that a joint trial will result in 'specific and compelling prejudice' to his defense. United States v. Liss, 265 1220, 1228 (11 th Cir. 2001) (citing United States v. Walker, 720 F.2d 1527, 1533 (11 th Cir. 1983)). Additionally the court must "balance the right of defendants to a fair trial, absent the prejudice inherent in a joint trial, against the public's interest in efficient and economic administrations of justice". United States v. Hewes, 729 F.2d 1302, 1318-19 (11 th Cir. 1984).