State and federal laws are can carry potentially harsh penalties regarding drug crimes. There are different categories of drugs that carry more severe penalties if they’re found in your possession, just as trafficking and distributing drugs can carry a harsher sentence depending on the quantity in question. Drug charges vary and the elements of your specific case or circumstance can change what you are charged with and the penalties you might receive.
Illegal Search and Seizure and Other Factors that Can Affect a Drug Case
In some cases, you may be a victim of illegal search and seizure. What is an illegal search and seizure? The stipulations vary from case to case. But typically speaking under federal law, a law enforcement officer is not entitled to search your vehicle or personal property without probable cause or a search warrant. If there is no probable reason to believe a crime is being committed, there is no reason a law enforcement officer should need to search your property. If this fact is overlooked and you were illegally searched, there is an increased likelihood that your case can be thrown out.
A skilled lawyer will use the truth to challenge the means by which the drugs were obtained. There have been many cases historically where drugs were illegally found and arrests were illegally made. It’s best to work with a lawyer who’s seen this situation happen time and time again. Always remember that in most circumstances, it is your constitutional right to deny a law enforcement officer to enter and search your home, car or personal property without a warrant.
What if the Drugs Were Not Yours?
Sometimes, drugs are assumed to be in an individual’s possession because of mitigating circumstances. For example, let’s say you’re driving in someone else’s car and get pulled over. What happens if a police officer searches the car and finds drugs in the glove box or center console? If the drugs are wrongfully assumed to be yours, what happens next? Who will be charged? This is why anyone convicted of a drug crime needs to team up with an experienced attorney to fight for their innocence in this situation. Proof of possession can easily become hard to distinguish. If you are involved in a situation where it’s difficult to prove possession beyond a reasonable doubt, you may become the victim of a drug charge that you don’t deserve.
All drugs that are taken into legal possession must be tested to determine that they truly are what law enforcement officers believe them to be. Lab reports can and should be challenged if you believe you are wrongly accused of possessing a drug. Sadly, there is no rule that states everything a police officer does is always factual, true, and in accordance with the law. If you have doubts about the legitimacy of your case, trust a lawyer who’s seen it all before.
Can a Drug Crimes Lawyer Help Me Beat the Charges?
A skilled drug crimes defense attorney can work to reduce your penalties regardless of what the specifics of your situation are. In some cases, a convicted individual can have their penalty reduced to community service or simply paying a fine. Jail time doesn’t always have to be the case. Depending on the circumstances, the convicted person may need to be admitted to a rehabilitation facility in place of going to jail. But whatever the charge might be, your best chance at a strong defense comes from partnering with a strong, motivated attorney.