Criminal Defense Lawyers
Criminal defense lawyers are attorneys that represent the defendant in a crime case. Many criminal defense lawyers get their start as state prosecutors, acting on behalf of crime victims. If a defendant cannot afford to hire a lawyer, one is appointed for them by the state.
In a criminal trial, the defense lawyer's job is to use their knowledge of the law to cast aspersions on the state's case. It is the prosecutor's job to prove the defendant guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. While it is the defense lawyer's job to represent the client to the best of their ability, there are limits to what they can do. They cannot put someone on the witness stand and encourage them to lie, and in most cases they do not want their client to admit guilt.
Depending on the case, a defense lawyer may need to know the truth. A lot of cases are plea-bargained before they make it to the judge, in hopes of getting a reduced sentence for the defendant. In civil cases, the defense lawyer's job is harder, because the presumption of guilt is lowered to 51%.
Prosecutors can make quite a bit of money, but a criminal defense lawyer can make a lot more. If a defendant has assets and is facing a prison term, they will pay a great deal to avoid prison.