Did you know that it is a crime to tell a lie to the federal
government? Even if your lie is oral and not under oath? Even if you
have received no warnings of any kind? Even if you are not trying to
cheat the government out of money? Even if the government is not
actually misled by your falsehood? Well it is.
To begin with, you are not qualified to know whether you are innocent of wrongdoing under federal criminal law.
(extra emphasis, mine)
That was written by a criminal defense attorney, as part of an article on how to protect yourself, not as part of an advertisement for his services. Stop! Stop and ponder, for just a moment, the full implications of that portion in bold and how it is that it could come to this in a so-called "Land of the Free."
Well, I was going to do point-by-point commentary on the whole very fine article ("fine," only because of the extent to which it exposes the very nature of the things I’ve been saying, if you’ve been paying attention). But you know what? This is of the sort of importance where you just need to take the 5 minutes and read that article carefully and take it to heart. And not because of some anti-state point that I want to make, but because your ability to stay out of jail someday for something you haven’t the slightest clue in the world is upon you just might depend on what you glean from it.
Never, ever talk to the police, state, or federal investigators / prosecutors, under any pretense or for any reason whatsoever (including as a witness), without first consulting a [good] criminal-defense attorney. No exceptions, ever.