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Drug trafficking is a serious offense that carries the potential for significant penalties, including prison time. A drug trafficking conviction can have life-changing consequences. Because of this, persons who are being investigated or who have been charged with drug trafficking should immediately seek out legal representation from a Pennsylvania drug trafficking lawyer.
What is considered drug trafficking in Pennsylvania?
Pennsylvania law defines the elements of drug trafficking. In general, to be charged with drug trafficking there must be evidence of a person grew, manufactured, or possessed an illegal drug, such as cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, ecstasy, or marijuana, and the person had the intent to deliver the drug to another.
The prosecution may use a variety of evidence to try and prove the elements of drug trafficking. Some examples of evidence that may be relevant to the charge includes:
Because there are several elements that must be show in a drug trafficking case, it is important to carefully review the case to determine whether the prosecution has enough evidence to prove the charge. A Pennsylvania drug trafficking lawyer will be able to gather the information in the prosecution’s possession to determine any weaknesses in the case.
What are the potential penalties for drug trafficking?
Drug trafficking is a felony offense. A felony conviction may result in significant jail or prison time. It also may adversely affect certain civil rights. There may also be financial penalties, probation, treatment requirements, restitution, community service and a driver’s license imposed.
The extent of the penalty depends on the substance alleged to be trafficked and the amount of that substance. Because there are significant consequences, it is important to have an experienced drug trafficking lawyer representing you to advocate for a fair result.
Are there any defenses to drug trafficking?
Depending on the facts of your case, there may be certain defenses available to challenge the charge or result in exclusion of evidence. Some defenses may include:
1) Lack of probable cause: In order for a case to be pursued, there must be at least probable cause to support the charges. This means that there must be sufficient evidence to show each of the elements of drug trafficking. If there is not sufficient evidence, then the case should be dismissed before there is a trial.
2) Reasonable doubt: In order for you to be convicted of drug trafficking, the prosecution must be able to prove the elements of the crime beyond a reasonable doubt. If the fact finder at a trial determines that there is reasonable doubt, then you should be acquitted of the crime.
3) Intent: For drug trafficking, there must be evidence of an intent to distribute the illegal drugs. Mere possession of the illegal drugs, without more, is not enough to be convicted of drug trafficking.
4) Tainted evidence: if evidence was obtained in violation of your constitutional rights or if the state failed to follow the proper procedures in collecting and analyzing evidence, then the tainted evidence may be excluded from consideration in your case.
How can a Pennsylvania drug trafficking lawyer help?
A Pennsylvania drug trafficking lawyer will act as your advocate and protect your rights. They will help you understand the charges and the strengths and weaknesses of your case. If defenses are available, a lawyer will raise those defenses and argue for the appropriate remedy.
By have representation from a Pennsylvania drug trafficking lawyer, you will be able to make informed decisions about how to proceed with your case. A lawyer will argue on your behalf and take the appropriate action to protect your rights.
If you are facing drug trafficking charges in Pennsylvania, then contact us to schedule a consultation.