North Carolina is in the southeastern United States on the Atlantic Seaboard. North Carolina is bordered by South Carolina and Georgia to the south, Tennessee to the west and Virginia to the north. North Carolina consists of three main regions; from east to west, they are the Coastal Plain, the Piedmont region and the Appalachian Mountains. The Outer Banks region is the extreme eastern section of the state where narrow islands form a barrier between the Atlantic Ocean and inland waterways.
Each region of North Carolina is unique. In the western region, the Blue Ridge Mountains offer outdoor recreation opportunities and spectacular scenic drives. The coastal region features white, sandy beaches with temperate year-round weather. North Carolina’s major metropolitan areas are clustered in the middle of the state; they feature numerous cultural attractions and highly-rated universities.
Situated between Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill, the Research Triangle Park is one of North Carolina’s best known areas. The business center features international high-tech industries engaged in research and development. This provides well-paying jobs for the Triangle region and attracts well-educated, professional residents. North Carolina, population 9,222,414 (2008 U.S. Census Bureau estimate) has three major Metropolitan Combined Statistical Areas with over one million residents each; the Metrolina, which includes Charlotte, Gastonia and Salisbury; the Triangle, which includes Raleigh, Durham, and Chapel Hill; and the Piedmont Triad, which includes Greensboro, Winston-Salem and High Point.
Patriotic North Carolina has a long history of hosting military installations. Fort Bragg, near Fayetteville, is the largest military base in the United States. Pope Air Force Base is also located near Fayetteville, NC. The Marine Corps Base of Camp Lejeune, combined with other nearby bases, comprises the largest concentration of Marines in the world. The Seymour Johnson Air Force Base is located in Goldsboro, NC. One of the busiest air stations in the United States Coast Guard is located at the Coast Guard Air Station in Elizabeth City. Also stationed in North Carolina is the Military Ocean Terminal Sunny Point in Southport.
While Charlotte is North Carolina’s largest city, Raleigh is the state capital. Raleigh is in Wake County, in east central North Carolina. The Greater Raleigh area receives 11.5 million visitors annually according to the Greater Raleigh Convention and Visitors Bureau. Other popular visitor destinations include Durham, Charlotte, Winston-Salem and Asheville.
If you are facing state criminal charges, including filing a false tax return, a violation of employee withholding laws or a sales and use tax violation, your case will be heard in state court. North Carolina’s unified statewide court system is known as the General Court of Justice. There are three divisions: the Appellate Division, the Superior Court and the District Court. The Superior Court and District Court are commonly referred to as the North Carolina trial courts. The Appellate Division includes the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeals. Both are located in Raleigh, the state capital. The Supreme Court of North Carolina is the state’s highest court, and there is no further appeal in state court from decisions rendered by the seven justices. Supreme Court is held at 2 East Morgan Street, Raleigh, North Carolina 27601.
North Carolina State Courts’ trial division includes the North Carolina Business Court. This is a specialized court that deals with complex issues of corporate and commercial law. There are business courtrooms in Greensboro, Charlotte and Raleigh.
If you have been charged with a federal white collar or tax crime — including tax evasion, failure to file or use of abusive tax shelters — your case will be heard in federal court. The state is divided into three U.S. Court Districts — Eastern, Middle and Western. Appeals from the Eastern District of North Carolina are taken to the United States Court of Appeals for the U.S. Fourth Circuit.