Every citizen is bound to his or her nation/state by law. When an individual violates such laws he can be made liable for punishments sentenced by courts. Criminal law refers to the law that dictates punishments, penalties and charges against people who commit criminal offenses. Thus a criminal lawyer is responsible for presenting the case of an accused criminal in court.A criminal lawyer can assume two or three roles. He can enlist with the government and become a public prosecutor who has the responsibility of proving that the accused is guilty. One other option is to don the role of a criminal defense lawyer who takes the side of the accused and tries to prove his innocence. Criminal lawyers can also seek employment with the government as a public defender. These attorneys represent defendants who cannot otherwise afford the services of private criminal defense attorneys.A criminal lawyer working with the defense council is vested with the duty of advising his client on the best course of action to follow. Sometimes he might even advice him to accept the prosecution’s plea bargain, if it sounds feasible. For crimes that can be proven wrong, however he will exercise able his skills and experience to bring forth a favor verdict for his client. The criminal lawyer has the right to produce and question witnesses before and outside court. He will also work hard to produce a valid alibi for the accused to prove that he was elsewhere when the crime was committed.Criminal lawyers should not carry any apprehensions about their actions in court. They have the liberty to raise objections against the other lawyer if they feel that something incorrect has been said. The criminal lawyer acting for the defense is vested with the responsibility of providing a final summation of the case. Quite often, such a winding up speech can make or break a case.Often criminal defense lawyers have to defend people guilty of heinous crimes. In such cases they should have the mental strength to put aside personal views and try to get the client all his rights under law. He is required to maintain a high degree of confidentiality on information provided by his client. He is liable to follow the instructions of the client as long as they are legal in proceeding with the case. A lawyer is expected to keep his personal interest in the client at bay as long as they work together on the case.Thus a criminal lawyer has great deal of responsibility for which he receives handsome fees. Often they charge by the hour.