When Facing Criminal Charges for Possession, You’ll Want a Drug Possession Lawyer to Use the Best Defense Possible for Your Case.
In the United States, the Controlled Substances Act (CSA), 21 U.S.C. § 801 et seq., governs the legal standing of various drugs. If you are facing criminal drug possession charges, depending on the substance(s) in question, your drug possession lawyer will build your defense around one main strategy. This article will discuss some of the most common defenses for drug possession.
State vs Federal Drug Laws
State and Federal laws do not always frame drug crimes in the same way. Generally, federal laws are focused on drug trafficking, where state laws are centered around manufacturing or distribution. With a substance like marijuana, although recreational and medicinal use is legal in some states like Massachusetts, it is not yet federally legal. Depending on your case, a drug possession lawyer will have to change the defense based on what class of drug was involved.
The CSA categorizes controlled substances into five different classifications:
- Schedule 1: Ecstasy, LSD, and heroin. Marijuana is also considered a Schedule 1 drug, despite studies finding it to have medical uses.
- Schedule 2: Cocaine and methamphetamine.
- Schedule 3: Anabolic steroids, ketamine, testosterone.
- Schedule 4: Ambien, Xanax, and Valium.
- Schedule 5: Lyrica and cough suppressants.
These are the federal classifications. Each state, however, can try and pass local legislation in order to alter the definitions and expand or minimize legality within the state. Cannabis is an excellent example of this.
How Can a Drug Possession Lawyer Help You?
First and foremost, if you are facing drug possession charges, it is crucial that you find an aggressive and experienced drug possession attorney to help with your case. Experience affords you a fighting chance to achieve the best outcome for yourself.
Possible Possession Defenses
When you are charged with possession of drugs you may be charged with possession for personal use or possession with intent to sell. Depending on your case, there are six different defenses your attorney may choose to use:
Unlawful Search and Seizure:
Your Fourth Amendment rights were violated. Meaning, the drugs connected to you were not collected through lawful search and seizure procedures.
Drugs Belong to Someone Else
It can be properly demonstrated that the drugs were not yours or you had no knowledge of their presence.
Crime Lab Analysis
A skilled defense attorney can challenge the expert witness (like a chemist) or order proper testing using a private lab. You may have been arrested because something looked like an illegal substance, but it was never tested in a lab.
The drugs apprehended at the time of the arrest cannot be located
Drugs Were Planted
Not a commonly successful defense as law enforcement testimonies are hard to challenge. However, there are motions that can be filed that if approved, the judge will order any earlier filed complaints against an arresting officer to be released.
Sting operations are legal but your drug crime attorney may be able to prove that you were forced to commit a crime you would not have otherwise committed were it not for the involvement of law enforcement.
If you are facing criminal charges for possession of drugs, find yourself a trustworthy and aggressive drug possession lawyer to be your legal advocate. What may seem like a helpless situation may be completely manageable with the proper legal support.
If you are in the Worcester, MA area, contact us now at Murphy & Rudolf, LLP for a free legal consultation.