Our Philadelphia criminal lawyers have over 25 years
of combined legal practice – handling some of the
toughest cases in the country.
SKA Law is a premier, Philadelphia criminal defense law firm, founded by professional criminal attorneys. We take on cases other law firms turn down, because we know how to fight – and when to negotiate. Our goal is to get you the best outcome possible. No fluff. No nonsense. Our focus is results.
SKA Law takes on fewer clients than other firms – it’s because we believe that taking on fewer clients means we can provide more service, and better results.
Our firm has over 25 years of combined legal practice. Our Philadelphia criminal attorneys have been recognized by the top lawyer ranking services.
Our Philadelphia criminal attorneys are available 24/7- regardless of the holiday, or time of week. We are always available to help you.
We take on fewer clients than other firms. Each client works 1:1 on with one of our senior attorneys.
If you’ve been arrested in Pennsylvania for drug possession, you’ll need a great defense attorney. Drug possession charges are taken very seriously by the court and employers. This can lead to many potentially bad outcomes without skilled representation. Not only is it possible to be charged on the state level but federally as well. Our attorneys will assess your case and prepare the best possible defense. Don’t leave it up to chance with a public defender that’s working a heavy caseload.
Your constitutional rights as they pertain to drug charges:
Protections against illegal searches and seizures:
Whenever you’re faced with being arrested for any reason, the smartest thing to do is avoid questioning without having an attorney present. The police cannot force you to answer their questions and, in fact, must stop questioning you when you request representation. Probable cause is also a huge factor pertaining to drug cases. Since many drugs are found while being pulled over for a moving violation, it’s important to consider some factors. The police must have a valid reason to request that you stop in the first place. They must also have a valid reason to conduct a search of your vehicle or property. Without these factors in place, they have no valid reason to conduct a search, detain you, or stop you in the first place. Furthermore, the evidence must be suppressed if it’s obtained through unreasonable measures or circumstances.
You have the right to remain silent:
Remaining silent is the best thing you could possible do when being interrogated by the police. What may seem to be an innocent conversation or question can often be used as evidence against you. Also, being arrested is a stressful event. It’s probably not the best time to be making any sort of statements. Simply telling the officer, detective, or anyone else questioning you that you’d like an attorney present is the best option at this point.
Your right to an attorney:
You have the right to request that an attorney be present for questioning and at any other phase of the process. An attorney can guide you through the process to help you avoid common pitfalls and from being manipulated into submission. Legally, the police must stop asking questions once you request an attorney.
A fair and speedy trial process:
Having a fair trial is essential to any type of court case and especially when it involves illegal substances. Jurors can often be biased if they’re not selected carefully or there’s a chance for your case to be swayed by outside knowledge. A speedy trial is also to your benefit. A speedy trial ensures that you’ll not be imprisoned for any longer than necessary.
Types of drug offenses by category:
The following drugs are federally categorized by their level of severity for abuse and addictive qualities:
Schedule I drugs:
These drugs are to be considered the most severe in nature and have no practical medical use according to the federal government. Drugs in the schedule I class include:
Schedule II drugs:
Schedule II drugs have valid medical uses; however, are deemed highly addictive and potentially dangerous. Among these drugs are:
Schedule III through V Drugs:
These drugs have medical uses; however, they’re still considered illegal for use without a prescription. They can range from steroids to Xanax. Even some cough medicines fall into this category including Robitussin AD.
Contact us today for help with your case:
Getting in touch with us for a drug possession charge in Pennsylvania is a wise choice. We’ll fight for your rights and prepare a solid defense on your behalf. We’ll be happy to help you succeed just like so many others. Reach out to us for your case evaluation, today.
Perhaps you have received a charge for the possession of heroin. This charge can be scary because it classifies as a Schedule I Drug, and even if you get charged with a small amount of heroin, your first offense can still lead to you getting locked up in prison for up to one year. In addition, you could face $5,000 in fines. For a second time offense, you face up to two years in prison, and for the third offense, you could face three years in prison. The charges get harsher as you go.
You should remain alert to the danger that they don’t have to find the heroin in your handbag, backpack or pocket. In fact, the police could find it in your car or home, and they could use this to charge you with an offense. Let’s say that you were stopped in a car, and you were riding with three other individuals. Even if the heroin wasn’t yours, you could still face a charge if no one takes responsibility for it.
The Problem with These Charges
One of the biggest problems with these charges stem from the fact that it comes from addiction. People might get charged once, but they later come back and get charged again because they can’t get off the drugs. This can lead to drug charges even when the person wants to get off the drugs.
Never Speak with the Arresting Officer
If you get arrested and charged with possession of heroin, you should never speak with the arresting officer. In addition, you shouldn’t speak to the prosecutor without your lawyer present. The reason for this stems from the nature of their job. They exist to prosecute you. As the saying goes, “Anything you say can and will be used against you in the court of law.” This means that they can take something that you said innocently and take it out of context as a way of making you look bad to the courts. Never make any type of statement whatsoever to the prosecutor or the arresting officer without your lawyer present.
What an Attorney Will Do for You
An attorney will look at the specifics of your case to figure out the facts. She will see if the courts had probable cause to lawfully charge you with possession of heroin. It depends on the circumstances. For example, if you were stopped in a car with three other people, the attorney might bring up the question of whose it was. Another thing that your attorney could do is to work out a deal where you would enter into a drug treatment facility rather than serve prison time.
The Goal of the Attorney
When you get charged with possession of heroin, this is a serious charge, and you face inflexible drug laws where you could be sentenced to time in prison. An attorney hired privately will have your best interests at heart, and they will look at all the possible options to figure out what the best outcome will be. The problem with heroin is that it has a wide availability in the state of Pennsylvania.
The charges for a dealer or a trafficker will be even more severe. They get charged as felonies, and you could be facing as much as 15 years in prison with mandatory minimum sentences that guarantee you will face some time in prison.
Why It’s Important to Hire an Attorney
If you’ve been charged with possession of heroin, you should speak with a lawyer as soon as possible. For one thing, you want to receive sound legal advice. However, you also need strong legal representation because the penalties are harsh. A good lawyer will have the right understanding of your case and move forward accordingly. Going with a public defender is a terrible idea because they are swamped with many cases, and they won’t give your case the attention that it deserves
Controversies exist about the use of anabolic steroids. Oral and injectable forms of these drugs can tremendously increase muscle mass. Many bodybuilders and competitive athletes rely on steroids for a performance edge. Celebrities may use these drugs to enhance their physiques. And even recreational users take steroids to improve their appearance despite the adverse health risks. While many don’t believe steroids should be illegal, they are. Steroids fall under the DEA’s classification of Schedule III drugs. In the state of Pennsylvania, possession of these drugs is a crime.
The Legal Definition of Possession of Steroids
Anyone carrying steroids on his or her person without a prescription may face charges of possession. Steroids such as Dianabol, Testosterone, Winstrol, and others do require a prescription — no exceptions. Certain steroids might not be available legally in any way, shape, or form since doctors do not and cannot write prescriptions for them. Carrying these drugs in your pocket or a vehicle does reach the legal definition of possession. However, you can be charged with a crime even when the drugs are not on you nor within your reach.
Anyone who maintains access to a drug may face charges of possession. So, if the drugs are located as a second residence you own, you can be charged with possession regardless of whether you physically stood inside the property.
Please be aware you could be charged with possession of drug paraphernalia as well. Testosterone, for example, enters the body through injections. Possessing syringes when there is no actual prescription for testosterone usually means additional charges.
Simple Possession vs. Possession with Intent to Deliver
Acquiring steroids for personal use falls under the delineation of simple possession. A charge for possession falls under the category or misdemeanors. While a misdemeanor is less than a felony, being arrested, charged, and convicted of a misdemeanor is a serious matter. Regardless of your personal opinions about steroids, the record will show your conviction for a drug offense. That’s what others will see when performing a background check.
Anyone arrested for possession with intent to deliver faces felony charges. Intent to deliver represents the accused intended to sell steroids. Someone who is “only” selling small amounts to others in a gym breaks the law. He/she would be a “drug dealer” under Pennsylvania and federal law.
Keep in mind, a conviction in a court of law requires proof of knowledge, control, and other criteria to arrive at a conviction. A skilled attorney may address these and other aspects of the charges to create the necessary reasonable doubt to avoid a conviction.
The Internet and Criminal Actvity
The bodybuilding and fitness world doesn’t always shy away from discussions about steroid use. People openly discuss their drug use on message boards and social media platforms. Some provide advice about how to use steroids on YouTube. Anyone who thinks law enforcement isn’t monitoring such activity may be in for a surprise one day. Anyone even hinting at selling steroids likely is under law enforcement’s radar. One day, a warrant is served, and arrests are made. Soon after, the accused looks at the massive amount of evidence compiled during the investigation. All the previously made public commentary about steroid use now haunts the accused.
Defenses for Steroid Possession
Anyone who finds him/herself facing charges related to the possession or sale of steroids should retain the services of an experienced attorney. An attorney who understands how to approach a steroid case could best serve a client. Even when the state’s case is strong, an experienced attorney could work out a plea agreement. The attorney may also help a client receive a fair sentence if pleading or found guilty.