Drug offenses come with firm penalties and consequences both at state and federal levels. Typically, you would receive a state charge for a relatively minor offense such as possession. Federal drug charges often apply to manufacture and trafficking offenses. The decision to prosecute a drug offender on federal drug charges is made based on the type of substance and the amount seized. If you are facing charges for a federal drug crime, contacting a federal drug defense lawyer as soon as possible should be the first step.
Simply having a small amount of marijuana for personal use will not result in federal drug charges. The most common federal drug offenses are for:
Manufacturing and Delivery
When a larger amount of a drug is seized, it is considered dealing since it is more than can be taken for personal use. Federal charges may also involve transporting drugs over state lines or involve a conspiracy. The distribution of a narcotic while in possession of a firearm is also a federal offense. These charges carry severe sentences upon conviction. If you are charged with a federal drug crime, it is best to speak with a federal drug charge lawyer immediately to ensure you get the best defense.
Drug distribution includes the illegal sale, delivery, or providing of controlled substances. Charges such as these often occur as a result of a transaction with an undercover officer. Trafficking is the illegal sale or distribution of controlled substances. If the police seized a substantial amount of drugs during your arrest, you might be facing some serious trafficking charges.
The penalties for these charges depend upon several factors. These factors include the type of substance and the amount, where you were apprehended and whether you have a previous criminal drug conviction. The penalties may be higher, for example, if the charges involve drugs being sold near a school, or when someone is charged with smuggling drugs into the country. Your federal drug charge lawyer makes sure that if trafficking charges were made, there is substantial and valid evidence against you.
Federal drug possession charges may be based on actual or constructive possession. Actual possession means that the drugs were seized directly from you while constructive possession means that drugs were available or in a place that is known although they are not actually in your pocket. For example, drugs discovered in a vehicle could belong to anyone in the car. Any or all of the passengers or driver could be charged with constructive possession.
Drug possession charges are most commonly made by state or local police. In these cases, the amount of drugs is important in determining whether possession will be made a federal charge. In general, small amounts of drugs that are for personal use will not result in federal charges. However, when the amount of drugs is more substantial, it is assumed that the substances are intended to be sold. In addition to drug possession charges, you could also be charged with possession of drug paraphernalia if you have syringes, scales, pipes or packaging products. A federal drug charge lawyer will review the charges and work to try to have some of them reduced or eliminated.
There are many different types of illegal narcotics. Some narcotics are considered street drugs and are used solely for illegal purposes. Others are legal drugs when prescribed and used by the person in the manner intended. These drugs are illegal when possessed, used, or sold.
Drugs are classified into schedules for the purpose of charges and penalties according to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). Drugs are categorized into five different schedules. Drugs are categorized based on their potential for abuse and accepted medical use. Drugs in Schedule I are highly addictive, have the potential to be abused, and no medically determined value. Schedule V drugs are the least addictive or have the lowest potential for abuse. Most substances are listed under the Controlled Substance Act (CSA). If a substance is not listed, it may still be considered illegal and will be treated the same as similar substances.
Schedule I drugs are substances which have no medical use and also have a high potential for abuse. Schedule II drugs have a high potential for abuse and may also lead to psychological or physical dependence. Schedule III drugs have a moderate to low dependence level. Schedule IV drugs have a low risk of abuse or dependence, and Schedule V drugs have the lowest possibility of abuse.
Some narcotics are available over the counter, such as cough syrup, which can become an illegal substance when it is taken in a manner that is not in accordance with the instructions. Generally, federal charges may apply to any drug category because of the amount of narcotics that were seized. A federal drug defense lawyer will assist in reviewing the charges to determine that the law is appropriately applied.
Penalties for a federal drug conviction are usually more severe than state charges. Some of the penalties that apply in a conviction include:on.
Imprisonment of more than ten years
Loss of Benefits
You could face additional consequences as a convicted felon. These may include losing the ability to own a firearm and losing the right to vote. You will also find it harder to get a job, obtain a loan, or get into certain schools. A criminal conviction remains on your record and is visible to those who perform background checks. You will also have to inform potential employers that you have previously been convicted of a felony. For these reasons, it is best to try to avoid a conviction with help from a federal drug charge lawyer.
Federal drug charges are one of the most serious and severe situations you can face in life. If you are arrested on federal drug charges, contact a federal drug defense lawyer immediately. If questioned by authorities, it is in your best interest to avoid making any statements until you consult with federal drug charge lawyers. Any statement you make can be used against you in court at a later date. Even if you feel the charges are inaccurate, keep in mind that what you say could make you appear guilty.
After arrested on drug charges, you will be provided an initial hearing. During the hearing, you will be given a list of charges against you, and you will be allowed to state your plea. Before you go in front of a judge, it is advisable to speak with a federal drug charge lawyer to review the details of your case and to learn more about your options. Do not answer questions until first talking with an experienced federal drug defense lawyer. These charges are serious and, therefore, require the experience of a lawyer that understands the system.
You have legal rights, even after a criminal charge. A federal drug defense lawyer will help protect your rights and ensure that the charges against you are made correctly. It is best to wait to have a federal drug charge attorney with you when you answer questions or speak to law enforcement. If possible, your drug charge lawyer will try to have your bail reduced or eliminated, so you are able to remain out of jail while the case is pending. All evidence in the case will be examined to make sure that it was gathered properly and that the charges are appropriate.
Drug charges carry significant penalties and require representation from an aggressive federal drug defense lawyer. If you are facing federal drug charges, you are likely under a lot of stress. You could be in jail if you are unable to post bond. You need an aggressive defense team that will address all of the charges and provide you with a better chance of resolving the problem in a positive way. All too often, excessive drug charges are made, and sometimes there is not enough evidence to support the charges.
Federal drug charge lawyers are experienced in handling even the most complex federal drug cases. They are able to review information about the case and work to obtain the best possible results. In some instances, a federal drug charge attorney will be able to obtain a plea deal. A plea deal could allow you to plead guilty to lesser charges, which could greatly reduce the penalties.
If you are facing federal drug charges, contact the experienced federal drug defense lawyers at Best, Hayduk, Brock to discuss the details of your case today.