HOPE Fellow Dreams of Becoming a Federal Prosecutor; Worked at U.S. Attorney's Office This Summer


Miami Law HOPE Fellow Alex Calle has his eye on becoming a federal prosecutor one day. He's getting one step closer this summer working in the Narcotics Section of the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida. Narcotics is considered one the busiest sections in the office. Already Calle has observed six narcotics trials in just two months.

In addition to observing a number of criminal and proceedings trials, the rising 3L has been fortunate this summer to receive a number of assignments such as researching drugs and weapons issues, drafting motions and assisting at counsel's table in Magistrate Court during initial arraignments, filling out extradition requests, and filling out Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty requests.

Calle credits the faculty and the Litigation skills program at Miami Law for helping him prepare for this position. "I have been able to grasp complex issues because of the criminal law and criminal procedure courses that I have taken with Professor Tamara Lave. Also, the skills that I learned in the Litigation Skills program allowed me to be able to follow many fast paced pre-trial and trial proceedings."

The Brooklyn, New York native says he has a real passion for criminal law because it deals with things that affect everyone on a daily basis. As Calle explains, "You're not sitting behind a desk doing transactional work; you're negotiating, you're in trial, everything is fast paced and I like that. Prosecutors work toward keeping the community safe and I would like to do that one day."

Something that has surprised Calle this summer is the amount of negotiations that take place between the Assistant U.S. Attorney's and defense lawyers to avoid going to trial. "I thought that defense lawyers always wanted to go to trial to acquit their clients of all charges, but it seems as if though most defense lawyers like to work with the government to avoid long sentences for their clients."

Calle has big plans after graduating in May 2014. He would like to be a prosecutor at either the Miami-Dade State Attorney's Office or the Suffolk County District Attorney's Office in Boston and hopes to one day return to the USAO to work as a federal prosecutor.