White Logo

Houston Criminal Lawyer

Texas is tough on crime. Hire a defense attorney who’s tough on the prosecution!

If you’ve been arrested or charged with a crime, you need a skilled Houston criminal lawyer on your side. Dealing with law enforcement is an overwhelming experience. You might feel confused, scared, or simply angry at the accusation. 

Criminal charges are complex and often sensitive, and the mere accusation can tarnish your reputation. Your freedom and your future are on the line – not to mention the financial strain of the penalties in Texas. That’s why you need the expert legal representation and aggressive protection of your rights that only an experienced Houston criminal defense attorney can offer. 

The defense attorneys at Universal Law Group are former prosecutors with over 20 years of experience in the courtroom. Our team of trial attorneys knows how the other side operates, and our sole priority is to secure your freedom. 

No one ever plans to have their car impounded and their freedom stripped away. When it happens, you deserve the best criminal attorney in Houston, TX. We offer affordable payment plans to help ensure you have the aggressive representation you need and deserve. Connect with our criminal defense law firm to schedule a consultation today.

Your rights require diligent protection. Our focus is on reduced charges and dismissal to protect your freedom. 

Experienced Houston criminal lawyer Julie Maxey

How Can a Criminal Defense Attorney Help Me?

If law enforcement charges you with a criminal offense, your attorney is an invaluable asset. We leverage our firm’s resources to protect your rights and avoid a conviction. An experienced attorney has a deep knowledge of criminal court procedures in Houston. Moreover, we understand the laws that apply to your specific case. 

Still, a Houston criminal lawyer can and should offer so much more. 

  • Guidance & representation: We provide expert legal guidance to help you understand your charges and the potential consequences. Then, we explain your options and navigate the legal system on your behalf, ensuring you understand your rights every step of the way. 
  • Strong legal strategy: After a thorough evaluation of your case, we analyze the evidence and legal precedents to develop a legal strategy. By identifying the weaknesses of the prosecution’s case, we craft a personalized defense strategy. 
  • Advocacy & negotiation: Your attorney is an advocate for your best interests. We advocate for your best interests to reach the best possible outcome in your case. Whether we negotiate a plea bargain or represent you in court, your future is our priority.
  • Trial representation: We put your defense into action in the courtroom to protect your rights and fight for results that matter to you. 
  • Resources & assistance: We utilize every resource to aid your defense, including expert witnesses, rehabilitation programs, and forensic specialists. Additionally, we can refer you to community resources in Houston for any emotional support or other needs. 
  • Confidentiality: Your privacy is important, and we maintain a strict standard of confidentiality to protect your reputation. We promise to handle sensitive information with the utmost discretion.

If you face charges for a misdemeanor or felony in Texas, you need an experienced Houston criminal lawyer on your side. Call now to review your case with a trial attorney. 

Criminal Defense Practice Areas

Our criminal defense team handles charges at the State and Federal level. If you need an experienced, tough criminal defense attorney, call our firm at 832-767-0339 immediately. 


Our legal team can save your license. 

Sex Crimes

Defense against prostitution, solicitation, and assault.

Drug Charges

Protection against a variety of drug charges


Assault, aggravated assault, and other violent crimes


Protect yourself from charges of murder and manslaughter


Defense against charges of theft, burglary, and more

White Collar Crimes

Tax evasion, embezzlement, and other white collar charges


Clear your record to secure your reputation. 

Experienced Representation from ULG’s
Houston Criminal Lawyer

Houston Criminal Defense attorney Brian Nguyen reviewing evidence for a case in Houston, Texas

Attorney Brian Nguyen is a former prosecutor who understands how the Attorney’s Office operates. He has spent the past 20 years helping Houstonians fight criminal charges throughout Harris County. As a Houston criminal lawyer, he guides our team of attorneys to develop an effective, aggressive defense strategy for you. 

After graduating from the University of Texas at Austin School of Law in 2004, Brian worked as a Juvenile, CPS, Felony Intake, Municipal, and Misdemeanor Prosecutor. Today, he leverages that insight to represent Texans like you in State and Federal court

Our Houston criminal defense team consists of three former state prosecutors. In addition to Attorney Nguyen, John Cruickshank is a former Juvenile, Felony Intake, and Misdemeanor Prosecutor. Our team has successfully defended our clients against the most serious state and federal charges, including aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, capital murder, and felony racketeering and wire fraud.

While other attorneys put on a lively show, we know how a calm demeanor can shake the confidence of a prosecutor. When the prosecution sees a loss on the horizon, the result is a more favorable outcome for you, the defendant. See for yourself how aggressive defense saves lives. 

Experienced Former State Prosecutors

Flexible Payment Options

Trials in State and Federal Court

When Results Matter

Case Results

Over the years, we’ve handled a range of charges. The below are examples of cases dismissed, reduced, or resulted in probation with no time served.

  • Misdemeanor Thefts
  • 2nd Assault of Family Member
  • Assault Causes Bodily Injury/Family Violence
  • Assault
  • Interference with Emergency
  • 1st DWI
  • Resisting Arrest Search or Transport
  • 2nd DWI
  • Failure to Stop and Give Information
  • Felony Possession of a Controlled Substance
  • Felony Aggravated Assault
  • Fleeing Police Officer
  • Harassment
  • Unlawful of Carrying of Weapon

In the face of criminal charges, you deserve the best criminal defense attorney in Houston. Connect with our firm today to see how a strong defense can secure your freedom. 

  • "I highly recommend the Universal Law Group to anyone in need of legal services. Universal Law Group has a team of highly skilled and experienced lawyers who are committed to providing their clients with the best possible representation." - Andy D
  • "I was charged with a bogus criminal case and called a lot of other firms and attorneys. Went with ULG because Brian was a former prosecutor who got my friend’s case dismissed. If you want results, this is the place to go." - Bruce T
  • "Great service and affordable prices. Brian and his team dismissed my case and cleared my record. Highly recommended!" - Lizelle Z
  • "Universal Law Group is a great law firm. They are thorough, professional, and care about you." - Miles D

What You Should Do After an Arrest in Houston, TX

Universal Law Group's criminal defense attorneys reviewing a case with clients at their law office in Houston, Texas

If you are arrested, remain silent and immediately ask for a Houston criminal attorney. Don’t say anything, sign anything, or make a decision without your attorney present. Never provide excuses or explanations.  

If the police arrest you, you have the right to a local phone call. Make a call to your lawyer. If you call anyone else, the police can listen to your phone call, and they often do. 

Your right to remain silent is an essential protection against police manipulation. Police often assume you are guilty and try to convince you to confess. They have different tactics to try, but their only goal is a confession. 

Your first move should always be to contact a skilled criminal defense attorney.

Should I Use a Court-Appointed Attorney?

No, it is not in your best interest to work with a court-appointed attorney. When you choose a public defender, you roll the dice on representation. If your future is on the line, do you want to take that risk? 

There are plenty of great attorneys who work as public defenders. However, they are often overworked, handling too many cases at once. Additionally, you have inexperienced attorneys trying to make a living on meager payments for cases. 

A 2019 investigation by the Texas Tribune found that Texas counties did not offer competitive compensation for casework. Many of the attorneys they spoke to also complained about their inability to investigate cases and properly represent their clients. This was due to the limitations on the hours courts would approve and pay for. 

All of this makes it a challenge for these attorneys to get results. The results of your case are incredibly important and deserve committed representation. An experienced Houston criminal lawyer at Universal Law Group can offer you a better chance at the best possible outcome of your case. 

Never Represent Yourself at Trial

You have the right to represent yourself in court, but that doesn’t make it a good idea. To you, your case may seem simple. However, unless you are an attorney yourself, a lack of knowledge severely hinders your defense. 

Before you try to represent yourself in trial, ask yourself these questions: 

  • Does the other side have a lawyer? Yes, you are up against a prosecutor whose only goal is your conviction. 
  • Can you meet all the deadlines? You have to follow all the same rules as an experienced Houston criminal lawyer. That includes knowing and meeting all deadlines. Failure to meet a deadline can have serious consequences and can even cost you your freedom. 
  • How organized are you? A defense strategy requires keeping track of many different elements. 
  • Do you have an eye for detail? Criminal cases have a lot of paperwork and evidence. Finding holes in the prosecution’s case and successfully arguing them requires a keen eye for detail. 

Even if none of the above sounds like a challenge, pro se representation is not the best decision. Your future is on the line, and you need a professional, reliable criminal defense attorney on your side. 

When you hire an attorney, they have access to critical knowledge and resources. Moreover, they have the experience to navigate the system fluidly while maintaining deadlines and analyzing evidence. 

Don’t put your future at risk. We urge you to schedule a consultation with an experienced lawyer.

What Brian & His Trial Attorneys Can Do for You

If you face criminal charges, you need someone to advocate for you. Self-representation and court-appointed attorneys are options that leave you in a vulnerable position. The professional Houston criminal defense attorneys at Universal Law Group are your advocates at every stage of the criminal justice process. 

Here’s what our criminal defense team can do for you: 

  • Protection: We hold law enforcement and prosecutors accountable. As your legal representation, we ensure they do not violate your rights. If they do, we leverage that violation to dismiss evidence. 
  • Discovery: We ensure complete discovery to ensure the prosecution never hides evidence from you, intentionally or otherwise. 
  • Defense Strategy: You need a solid strategy to gain a favorable outcome. We analyze evidence and interview witnesses to identify inconsistencies that collapse the State’s case.
  • Pretrial Motions: We use pretrial motions to weaken the prosecution’s case against you. Excluding key evidence can result in a dismissal of your charges. 
  • Negotiations: We know how to pinpoint weaknesses. Through negotiations, we seek to dismiss charges, reduce penalties, and seek out alternative sentencing, such as deferred adjudication.
  • Courtroom Representation: If your case goes to trial, you need an experienced trial attorney who doesn’t shy away from a fight.

When your freedom is on the line, it’s not the time to cut corners. Don’t let the prosecutors or law enforcement scare you into an unfavorable deal. If you feel backed into a corner, we’re here to help you fight your way out.

Houston Criminal Lawyer FAQ

If you face charges for a crime you did not commit, you might think you don’t need a criminal defense attorney. Why would you need a lawyer when innocence is on your side?

It’s important to remember that the police and prosecutors want to solve a crime. Unfortunately, this drive means they build a case against you regardless of your innocence.

With a lawyer, you have someone to protect your rights. Our lawyers ensure that police and prosecutors don’t take advantage of you. Moreover, we ensure that we convey the evidence of your innocence in the most impactful way possible.

Houston criminal defense attorneys explain your innocence to those who want you to be guilty. In other words, we build a case for your innocence by amassing facts and details that support your claim.

Under the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure, the penalties vary. The severity of the charges dictates how harsh the penalties are for your case. For example, the fines for a misdemeanor theft charge are minuscule compared to assault. 

Here are the usual penalties: 

  • Fines
  • Jail time
  • Incarceration
  • Probation 
  • Restrictions on activity
  • A criminal record
  • Loss of rights (in felony cases)

Judges also have the flexibility to determine the consequences you face based on the outcome of your trial. However, all of the penalties in Texas are substantial. Any criminal charge has the potential to change your life. 

Many employers perform a criminal background check on prospective employees. Any sort of record can prevent your access to jobs, housing, and other fundamental needs. Work with an experienced Houston criminal lawyer who fights to keep your record clean.

Anyone charged with a misdemeanor, not including driving, boating, or flying while intoxicated, is eligible for deferred adjudication in Texas. The same applies to felony cases, not including intoxication manslaughter or assault, repeat sex offenses, or repeat drug offenses. 

Deferred adjudication is a type of probation, but it is not what most people think of as probation. Straight probation is the result of a conviction. Deferred adjudication involves the dismissal of charges in exchange for community supervision. 

A skilled Houston criminal lawyer from ULG can help you understand your options.

You should hire a criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible. Texas law has harsh penalties for criminal convictions. Moreover, the stigma of a conviction can haunt you for the rest of your life. 

As soon as you can make a call, you should contact an attorney or have a loved one search for a criminal lawyer near you. A local attorney has existing relationships with judges and prosecutors. They will leverage every possible resource to dismiss your charges. 

No. The police tell you themselves that you have the right to remain silent. Generally, you don’t have to talk to law enforcement, even when detained, arrested, or in jail. 

Police officers cannot punish you for refusing to answer questions. The only person who can order you to answer a question is a judge. Do not speak to anyone until your Houston criminal lawyer is at your side. 

The time it takes for a case to settle varies. However, Texas has a “speedy trial” rule, which can give you an idea. 

  • If you face felony charges, State prosecutors have to take your case to trial within 180 days after charging you. 
  • If you face misdemeanor charges punishable by over 180 days in prison, the deadline is 90 days. Less than 180 days, and it drops to 60 days

These timeframes only apply if you do not waive your right to a speedy trial or if your attorney doesn’t file a pretrial motion or request a continuance. Additionally, your case may settle sooner if the state drops the charges or you take a plea bargain. 

Before your case goes to trial, the prosecution might offer you, the defendant, a plea bargain. Every plea deal is different, but generally, a prosecutor wants you to plead guilty in exchange for a shorter sentence or some alteration. 

For instance, they might offer a deal that drops felony charges to a misdemeanor. You would still face punishment, but the penalties of a felony are much more severe. 

It’s important to understand whether a plea bargain is in your best interests. A guilty plea means you give up your chance to go to court. If the evidence against you is weak, it makes less sense to accept a plea bargain. You could go to trial and potentially avoid a conviction altogether.

A Houston criminal lawyer offers more than trial representation. They offer guidance throughout the process, including insight and advice on whether to accept a plea bargain.

Yes, any information you provide to your attorney falls under attorney-client privilege. This prevents the disclosure of any information you provide to your representation. 

universal law group

Consult a Trial-Ready Houston Criminal Lawyer

Fight for Your Freedom

Criminal charges carry profound implications and consequences. If you face charges, you need an advocate who knows how to solve problems. An experienced Houston criminal lawyer knows the law and has the experience and ability to make it work to your advantage.

Moreover, we understand how to competently and effectively build your defense with aggressive representation throughout the criminal justice process. Experience is invaluable when it comes to defense, and our team has the experience of a former state prosecutor on our side.

Therefore, we have the ability to analyze cases from the perspective of defense and prosecution. With our team of experienced criminal trial attorneys, you have advocates to fight for your future.

Schedule a case evaluation today.

*Consultation fees may be waived on a case-by-case basis and at the discretion of the reviewing attorney.