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Zoey_ JD
Zoey_ JD, JustAnswer Criminal Law Mentor
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 23170
Experience:  Admitted to NYS Criminal defense bar in 1989. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
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Im Giulio La Scala (Im an Italian Citizenship and I live in Rome) and Im

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I'm Giulio La Scala (I'm an Italian Citizenship and I live in Rome) and I'm often in US for business. Last time I was there it was on 12-15 July 2010 in Washington DC. When I was coming back to the Dullas airport (15 July 2010) I was stopped by an Police officer (TPR. B.S. Foster, code 7609)and he gave me a ticket (or Summon) for Reckless driving by speed 95/65 Mph (law 46.2-862)on VA-267 east. I'm travelling in US since many years and I have never collected a ticket. Now I have to be in court in Leesburg on September 2, 2010. I would like to have:
1) A picture of my legal situation
2) Possible legal and economic consequences (I need to travel for business again in US)
3) A lawyer that could represent me in court.

Thank you
Giulio La Scala [email protected]
Hello, and thank you for requesting me.

I can help you with the first two of your questions. As for the third, JustAnswer does not allow its legal experts to actually represent a customer in court, and we are also not allowed to make a direct referral to any particular lawyer. But I can tell you that you can get a referral for a very low-cost half hour consultation with a criminal lawyer by contacting the Virginia Bar Association's Lawyer Referral Service. They will guarantee to find you a lawyer who's a member of the Virgina Bar in good standing. And if at the end of the conference you don't want to hire him, you would be under no obligation to do so. I have linked you to their site. is also a reputable site that will list lawyers in a geographical area by the kinds of law they practice. But using the Bar Association would eliminate a lot of the guesswork on your part, since you are not going to be particularly familiar with our criminal justice system.

When you are driving way over the posted speed limit, the law assumes that you don't have enough control of the vehicle and that you are therefore a risk to your safety and others. In Virginia, if you are driving in excess of 80 miles per hour, you will be charged with reckless driving. Unlike a regular speeding ticket, which just would involve payment of a fine and some points on a US license, reckless driving is a criminal offense. So you will need a criminal lawyer, and the case against you is a misdemeanor.

The worst case scenario (the maximum penaly, which you will not have to worry about) will be up to one year of jail and/or up to $2,500 in fines, along with a possibility that your license could be suspended for up to 6 months.

An experienced lawyer should be able to negotiate something that would reduce this case to just a regular speeding charge which would lower the fine to $500 or less, and not effect your license to drive here. I'm basing the fine on a website I've found showing recent dispositions for these types of cases in Virginia. I'm cannot recommending the law firm, because I know absolutely nothing whatsoever about it, but you may find the chart informative to see what generally happens in this sort of case in Virginia.

A speeding conviction and a fine should not get in the way of your being able to return to the US on business.

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