A Rhode Island Attorney General covers various aspects of the law as prescribed by the state. These laws are in the form of statutes and can be found in the form of an annual report filed with the secretary of state. The Attorney General serves the people through this department. The Attorney General has the power to administer oaths, take oaths of office, take and record oaths and take proofs of oaths and also administer oaths for other people. This power is conferred on the Attorney General by the constitution of the state of Rhode Island.
One of the many matters that the Attorney General has to deal with is that of proving the guilt or innocence of a person. There may be several instances where the defendants have committed a crime, but the evidence against them is not strong enough to prove their guilt. In such cases, it may be the responsibility of the Attorney General to prove that the defendant is innocent. This can be done either through the help of experts like forensic experts, or through the services of some experienced lawyers who are qualified to assist the Attorney General in proving the guilt of the defendants. If convicted, the defendants are entitled to defense counsel under the law.
Prosecution: The purpose of prosecuting a criminal case is to bring the culprit to justice. Unlike in the civil trial process, in the criminal justice system the aim is to bring the culprit to justice by providing evidence to the prosecutor through the court system. The Attorney General can prosecute a defendant either by himself/herself or through the services of a private lawyer. When the defendant chooses the latter, then the entire procedure of proceedings will be handled by the private lawyer.
Plea Bargain: Sometimes, the situation is such that an attorney general needs to negotiate a plea bargain. This may sometimes be necessary to get the culprit to plead guilty or no contest to the charges. If a plea bargain is offered, then the attorney general must abide by the terms of the deal. The terms and conditions of the plea bargain vary from state to state.
Out of plea bargaining, one of the most common types of negotiations is a deal whereby the defendants agree to the charge or to a lesser amount of punishment if the case can be successfully resolved by a jury trial. In this case, the prosecution offers the defendants a deal in which they will just have to testify for the prosecution if found guilty. The attorneys for the defendants may not represent them before a jury. This type of plea bargain is common on Staten Island and is one of the most common forms of plea bargaining that ensues in the city. Most of the defendants accept the deal.
Wage Theft & Fraudulent Retainer: When a person has been accused of a crime such as grand larceny or felony, then he/she is facing possible wage theft charges. The attorney general often makes announcements about investigations, which may involve a possible investigation of an employer for wages theft, or an individual for embezzlement. If an employer or an individual suspected of embezzlement or wages theft commits the crime on Staten Island, then the Staten Island State Attorney General has to investigate. The prosecutor and the attorney general sometimes reach an agreement where the defendant will plead to a misdemeanor, pay a fine, or undergo restitution in lieu of a trial.