Notable Cases


FEDERAL MORTGAGE FRAUD CONSPIRACY PROSECUTION

(Our client was the only one of 16 defendants to be exonerated)

United States v. Gregory Michael Willson On February 10, 2012, a federal trial judge granted a judgment of acquittal at the end of the government's case at trial and dismissed the case against our client in a federal mortgage fraud case in Jacksonville, Florida. Therefore, the client was exonerated based on Mr. Truncale's skilled cross-examination of the government witnesses without any need to present additional defenses to the judge and jury. The grant of a judgment of acquittal by a judge in a federal fraud case is rarely achieved by any defense attorney throughout the United States

In this case, the client had been charged with 15 other co-defendants for conspiring to commit mail fraud and wire fraud in connection with a scheme to defraud lenders and homeowners of money in the sales of millions of dollars worth of residential property.

After a week long trial, the trial judge agreed with Mr. Truncale's argument that the government failed to prove that our client knowingly participated in the scheme based primarily on our cross-examination of the government's witnesses. Our client was the only one of the 16 defendants to go free and plan his future without the impediment of a federal criminal conviction and sentence.

FEDERAL COMPUTER HACKING PROSECUTION
(Not Guilty verdict after week-long complex federal trial)

United States v. Edgardo Candelaria, Jr. Our client, Edgardo Candelaria, Jr., was falsely accused in federal criminal court in Jacksonville, Florida, with having hacked into and having damaged the computer systems of a very large domestic corporation.

During the course of a week-long trial in April 2013, Jacksonville criminal defense lawyer Charlie Truncale was able to get the government's cyber crimes expert to admit that his conclusions about the proof of the client's alleged wrongdoing were totally wrong and could not serve as a basis for the indictment brought against him.

Mr. Truncale pointed out that several other critically important theories advanced by the government about his client's guilt could not be proven because they were unsupported by any evidence linking the client to the crime.

Justice prevailed when the jury returned a not guilty verdict for the innocent client whose freedom and future were protected by having obtained Mr. Truncale as his criminal defense lawyer.

STATE RACKETEERING AND GAMBLING PROSECUTION
(Client receives no conviction or sentence and obtains return of seized funds)

State of Florida v. A.H. Baiyer In April 2013, the State of Florida charged 57 defendants throughout the United States with racketeering, conspiracy to commit racketeering and various gambling offenses with regard to an alleged 290 million dollar illegal gambling enterprise. Mr. Truncale's client was charged in 158 counts and faced over 100 years of actual imprisonment under applicable sentencing guidelines if convicted.

The State claimed that Mr. Truncale's client was one of the enterprise's ringleaders who was responsible for manufacturing slot machines knowing that the slot machines would be used unlawfully by the enterprise at illegal gambling casinos throughout Florida.

Approximately one week before trial in September 2013, Mr. Truncale secured the dismissal of 157 counts and resolved the criminal case for his client with a no contest plea to an insignificant misdemeanor charge for which his client was not sentenced to any term of incarceration or probation and was not adjudicated guilty or fined.

Equally important, the client faced forfeiture of more than $12 million in profits from the alleged criminal activity. Mr. Truncale's client was the only alleged leader of the criminal activity who was granted waiver of the vast amount of forfeiture and received back all but $112,000 of his funds that were seized.


STATE VEHICULAR HOMICIDE PROSECUTION
(Not Guilty verdict exonerates active duty Iraq War veteran)

State of Florida v. Jen Yung Lee On October 20, 2011, a trial jury in Nassau County, Florida, found Mr. Truncale's client not guilty of all charges in a vehicular homicide case. The client was charged with two counts of vehicular homicide and two counts of reckless driving causing serious injuries.

The State presented eight eye-witnesses who claimed that the client recklessly had caused a collision between his motorcycle and a minivan occupied by five persons. The State also presented two accident reconstruction experts to prove that the fatal collision was due to the client's alleged reckless driving.

Our defense relied on our own accident reconstruction expert, two eyewitnesses and cross-examination of the State's witnesses. The jury agreed with Mr. Truncale's argument that our client did not drive recklessly and returned a verdict of not guilty of all charges shortly after one hour of deliberation. Had the jury convicted our client, he likely would have been sentenced to approximately 20 years imprisonment based on the mandatory sentencing guideline laws. Instead, the client was found not guilty and ultimately went on to win a gold medal for the United States in the sled hockey team competition at the Paralympics in Moscow, Russia.

STATE SECOND DEGREE MURDER PROSECUTION
(Not Guilty verdict after two-week trial of Jamaican visitor to the US)

State of Florida v. Errol Ricketts After a two-week trial in Jacksonville, Florida, a criminal jury returned a not guilty verdict in favor of our client who was charged with second degree murder by use of a firearm.

The State presented evidence that our client allegedly shot and killed a man in a botched attempt to enter into the victim's apartment. We proved that our client never attempted to break into the apartment and that our client was attacked at gunpoint by the alleged victim and an accomplice. We proved that our client disarmed the gun-wielding assailant in self defense when the gun fired accidentally killing the alleged victim.

We used several experts and in-court demonstrations to disprove the State's case, including a martial arts expert to show the method in which our client disarmed the gun-wielding assailant and to show that our client did not possess the firearm prior to disarming the assailant.

Despite the lengthy trial, the jury deliberated only slightly more than one hour in returning the not guilty verdict. Shortly after the client was exonerated by the jury, Mr. Truncale assisted the client in returning to the client's homeland of Jamaica by intervening with immigration officials who were detaining the client due to his having overstayed his visitor's visa due to the unjust incarceration pending the trial. Mr. Truncale broke through the administrative maze of immigration laws that would have caused at least another several months of incarceration of his client. As a result of Mr. Truncale's assistance, the client was home in Jamaica two days after the jury's not guilty verdict.


FEDERAL DRUG TRAFFICKING CONSPIRACY PROSECUTION
(Federal government concedes to innocence of client and dismisses case; Client only one of 19 defendants to be exonerated)

United States v. Lan Mong Thi Nguyen Mr. Truncale's client was indicted by a federal grand jury in Jacksonville, Florida on one count of conspiring to distribute drugs and a second count of using a telephone in furtherance of the drug conspiracy. The client was one of 19 defendants in the case.

Despite extensive wiretap evidence and physical surveillance, the prosecutor agreed with Mr. Truncale's argument that the evidence could who was the only one of the 19 defendants to go free and live her life without the stigma of a federal criminal drug trafficking conviction and a lengthy federal sentence.

STATE DRUG POSSESSION PROSECUTION
(States concedes to innocence of client and declines prosecution)

State of Florida v. Marcus Thomas After a highly-publicized arrest of our client for possession of cocaine in Orange Park, Florida, Mr. Truncale convinced the prosecutor not to bring formal charges against his client, who was then a starting defensive lineman for the Denver Broncos.

Mr. Truncale showed that the client was merely a passenger in a vehicle owned by the driver whose cocaine was already in the vehicle when our client entered the vehicle. Mr. Truncale showed that the client never knew of the presence of the cocaine until the police stopped the vehicle for erratic driving.

As a result of Mr. Truncale's representation of the client in the criminal justice system and Mr. Truncale's communications with the NFL team officials, the client continued his professional football career for several years with the Denver Broncos without adverse repercussions from the unfounded arrest.

STATE FRAUD PROSECUTION
(State dismisses complex fraud case on eve of trial)

State of Georgia v. Valerie Cox On the day before an expected complex several-week trial, the State dismissed all fifteen fraud charges that had been pending for over two years. Mr. Truncale had always insisted that his client would be exonerated by a jury and the State impliedly agreed by dismissing the case when the trial was set and the defense was fully prepared to defend the client's freedom and obtain not guilty verdicts on all counts.

STATE SEXUAL ASSAULT PROSECUTION
(States concedes to innocence of client and declines prosecution)

State of Florida v. John Reader Mr. Truncale's client, a sailor, was arrested for sexual assault in Jacksonville, Florida, while stationed at Mayport Naval Station.

Mr. Truncale convinced the prosecutor not to bring formal charges against the client after establishing that the alleged sexual assault could not have occurred at the time, place, and manner in which the alleged victim claimed. As a result of Mr. Truncale's representation, the client continued to faithfully serve the United States in the United States Navy for several years thereafter without the stigma of having been formally charged with an unfounded sexual battery offense.


STATE POST-CONVICTION RELIEF
(States concedes that client's conviction must be vacated)

State of Florida v. Paul MacNeil At a hearing in June 2011, in Hernando County Circuit Court, Brooksville, Florida, the prosecutor agreed with Mr. Truncale's motion to vacate the judgment and sentence against our client brought under Rule 3.850 of the Florida Rules of Criminal Procedure.

Our client previously had been convicted and sentenced under the Youthful Offender Act relating to charges that he had used a slingshot to shoot rocks at a car injuring a child inside the car.

Mr. Truncale argued that the prosecutor breached a plea agreement that the client and his former counsel had reached more than seven years before Mr. Truncale came into the case. A new prosecutor agreed with Mr. Truncale's argument and the client's judgment and sentence was vacated so that the client could seal or expunge his criminal record.

SUCCESSFUL APPEAL OF A FEDERAL SENTENCE
(Client's sentence reduced by seven years after successful appeal)

United States v. Jabari Hird On direct appeal of a sentence for armed bank robbery, Mr. Truncale convinced the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit to vacate his client's sentence and to remand the case to the trial court for re-sentencing of the client. Mr. Truncale had begun his representation of the client on the appeal after a different counsel had represented the client in the trial court. After obtaining the reversal on appeal, Mr. Truncale then represented the client in the trial court for re-sentencing. Mr. Truncale won a seven-year reduction of sentence at the resentencing hearing.


SUCCESSFUL APPEAL OF A FEDERAL SENTENCE
(Client's conviction reversed on appeal)

United States v. Jawan Lequint Myers On direct appeal of our client's judgment of conviction and sentence for possession of cocaine with intent to distribute, Mr. Truncale convinced the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit to reverse the judgment based on his argument that the trial court improperly denied his client's motion to suppress the search of his residence. Mr. Truncale had begun his representation of the client on the appeal after a different counsel had represented the client in the trial court.

ot establish beyond a reasonable doubt that the client was a knowing participant in the drug conspiracy.

The government dismissed all charges against Mr. Truncale's client.