While North Carolina does not have a speedy trial statute – which means that criminal trials can take many months or even years to be reached – the federal system does have a speedy trial statute beginning at 18 USC Sec. 3161 et seq.

This statute provides that any information or indictment charging an individual with the commission of an offense shall be filed with thirty (30) days from the date on which such individual was arrested or served with a summons in connection with such charges. The time may be extended for an additional thirty (30) days if the person has been charged with a felony in a district in which no grand jury has been in session during such 30 day period.

In any case where the defendant has entered a plea of not guilty, the trial of the defendant charged in an information or indictment with the commission of an offense shall commence within seventy-five (75) days from the filing date of the information or indictment, or from the date the defendant has appeared before a judicial officer of the court in which such charge is pending, whichever date last occurs.

These strict time limits put pressure on the United States Attorney to come to trial soon after a complaint is filed.

Damon Chetson - 1008 posts

Damon Chetson is a Board Certified Specialist in State and Federal Criminal Law. He represents people charged with serious and minor offenses in Raleigh, Wake County, and the Eastern District of North Carolina. Call (919) 352-9411.

Criminal Process, Federal Criminal Law