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Bileki & Tipon Legal Strategies For Service Members Stationed in Japan

We Win Cases Through Hard Work, Preparation, and Some of the Best Legal Tactics in the Business

The military’s court martial climate in Japan has taken its toll on the American military stationed there. Commands have set a zero tolerance standard on a handful of hot-button issues playing out in mainland U.S. politics, such as the so-called “War on Sexual Assault” and the “War on Drugs.” When these service members are accused and marched off to stand trial, they don’t have a clue that they’re walking into an ambush. And as military service members know, what do you do in an ambush, you assault through it.

We’ve had a front row seat to these court martial ambushes, and we’re constantly stunned by how many service members could’ve escaped their guilty verdict if their attorney had had a viable strategy in place to deal with these abusive and underhanded court martial tactics employed by government prosecutors. Had their attorney simply fought through the ambush. Few defense attorneys, however, have the experience and the legal know-how to even out the playing field, let alone win their cases and secure not-guilty verdicts on a consistent basis.

Would You Walk Into Court Knowing That Your Odds of Winning Were 1 in 10?

You’re up against a 90% military conviction rate, which is the standard across mainland Japan, Okinawa, and everywhere else that U.S. service members are stationed. It’s become so bad in fact that most defense counsels will just request that you plead guilty. “You simply cannot win your case,” they’ll claim. “You can’t go up against the vast amount of resources that the government can and will throw into your trial.”

Those ugly odds don’t stop at court martial cases. Matters involving divorce, alimony, or child custody often swing in your significant other’s favor. Despite having served honorably in the military and defended your country, you’re tossed around in court like none of it even matters.

What service members need, now more than ever, is an ally that understands their concerns and will hear their side of the story. These service members need a legal team with a serious strategy in place that can beat the odds. And not just in a handful of cases, but in a majority of cases.

The Bilecki & Tipon Strategy is in Place Long Before Your Trial Commenses

Bilecki & Tipon has a robust pre-trial strategy in place, which we consider paramount to a successful trial and not-guilty verdict. These tactics can include, but are not limited to, a thorough private investigation into both the crime scene and the life of the supposed victim, the testing of evidence with our own private forensic specialists, and requests to view interrogation videos and interrogation procedures. Your trial may require these or other pre-trial techniques, or it may require none of them. What’s important is that we have the resources and connections available to us to conduct these tactics, something that many other defense counsels simply don’t have.

Regardless of how many times the government delays or puts off cooperating on your case, Bilecki & Tipon will doggedly pursue it until we have what we need. Prosecutorial teams deal with push-over defense counsels every single day of the year. When they meet court martial attorneys like us, they have no idea what hit them. It’s only a matter of time before we succeed in preparing an unsinkable pre-trial case.

The Government’s Attempt to Turn Preliminary Hearings Against You—and Our Response

2015 saw a complete overhaul of the Article 32 preliminary hearing, which all but destroyed the rights of accused service members at these hearings. Before these new rules took effect, the defense could use a preliminary hearing to feel out the prosecution and learn more about the evidence and witnesses they had available. Well-prepared defense teams could refine their trial strategy even further, and even budget trial attorneys could gain some insight into the prosecution’s case and perhaps eke out a victory.

This, unfortunately, is no longer an option, as preliminary hearings have been reduced to extraordinarily limited fact-finding missions to determine whether probable cause existed or not (in the vast majority of instances, it does.) Both defense counsels and prosecutorial teams have started treating these hearings as a mere formality that must be endured before the main events of the trial. Under the new rules, the alleged victim is no longer required to testify at the hearing, but is allowed to be there with here tax-payer funded attorney listening in to the entire proceeding.

We’ve seen these new changes coming for some time, and we’ve been preparing. Even though the preliminary hearing isn’t what it used to be, we can still glean plenty of insight into the prosecution’s case. Additionally, it now often makes tactical sense to waive these hearing so that the government, alleged victim and her attorney’s don’t gather insight into the defense case and strategy. Often, a thorough independent defense investigation will be much more productive – and strategic – than the new Article 32 hearing. In either even, the decision to attend or waive the Article 32 hearing is a very important one that simply cannot be made without a defense strategy in place.

We Employ Some of the Most Talented Cross-Examiners in the Pacific Rim

Even the best court martial strategy will utterly fail without legal talent that can aggressively cross-examine the prosecution’s witnesses. These experts must be able to break even the most tight-mouthed witness or law enforcement specialist that takes the stand. Every story, every narrative, must be torn down to the studs in order to find the lies and falsehoods that stand between you and a not-guilty verdict.

This is by no means easy. It takes years and years of training and hundreds of cross-examinations to become a master at it. It’s one thing to simply ask a witness a few easy-to-answer questions. It’s another entirely to catch a government witness in the middle of a lie, or to have a well-coached witness become a stuttering wreck on the stand. This is how cases are won—when the jury realizes the government’s war ship is actually a rowboat full of holes. All you need is reasonable doubt to secure a victory. For this reason alone it’s critical that you hire attorneys that are expert cross-examiners.

Bilecki & Tipon has been winning cases for years with our cross-examination techniques. We come to court prepared, with a mastery over the law and the details of your case. Nothing escapes us when a witness is called to the stand, and when it’s our turn to ask the questions, it’s going to be the prosecution that looks worried, not you.

How to Defend Yourself Against the “Credibility Deficit”

The credibility deficit is a term that court martial attorneys use to describe the initial distrust that a jury has for the accused and their defense team. While the prosecution gets to walk into each case with white gloves on their hands, we don’t have that luxury, and it takes a lot of work to get back on even footing.

As the accused, you’ll face an uphill struggle from the time you walk into court, to the minute the verdict is read. Only a gunslinger with a mastery over the law and the details of your case can come back from this deficit to secure a not-guilty verdict. Your average Joe defense attorney will blame your loss on the credibility deficit, or will tell you that you’re better off just pleading guilty.

We don’t listen to that type of naysay here at Bilecki & Tipon. We’ll fight for every inch of ground if we have to if that’s what it takes to level the playing field.

Strategy and Tactics Win Court Martial Cases. And the Law Firm of Bilecki & Tipon Has Both in Spades.

You’re here because you know what’s at stake if you lose your case. You didn’t take the bait and walk into your trial unaware and unprepared. The same cannot be said for other service members, who have come face to face with the reality of their situation: years of incarceration, huge fines, forced entry onto a list of sex offenders, dishonorable discharges from the military. The list goes on and on.

You still have an opportunity to right the ship. The law firm of Bilecki & Tipon takes on service members that still have fight left in them, that don’t want to be steamrolled by a government that cares more about Congress and policy shifts than they do about the men and women who defend their country.

It’s your call. Contact the law firm of Bilecki & Tipon today, and we’ll get an initial consultation prepared for you as soon as possible. Call us 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, at (800) 996-9747.