Drug trafficking is a serious charge in Pennsylvania, as courts and prosecutors will attempt to tack on the strictest sentence possible for individuals with any drug charge, let alone drug trafficking. Drug trafficking in general can carry heavy penalties including up to 20 years in a state or federal penitentiary. The crime will typically be labeled as a felony as well, even for first-time offenders.
Luckily, a drug trafficking charge doesn’t have to be the end of the word, as our experienced criminal defense attorneys understand that drug trafficking charges can often be overstated and/or can be false or unfair accusations. Our attorneys have years of experience working in the legal system and can use their relationships, courtroom skills and knowledge to assist you in defusing or dismissing drug trafficking charges.
Understanding Drug Trafficking Charges in Pennsylvania
Drug trafficking is defined as the manufacturing, importing/exporting, distributing and/or dispensing of any controlled substance (And in some cases, counterfeit substances) in the US. Examples of controlled substances in the US include meth, heroin and cocaine. Pennsylvania can handle these charges differently compared to other state and federal courts though, as they lack a clear distinction between actual trafficking and possession with intent. This is because prosecutors who are unable to prove the delivering and/or sale of a drug will often try to prove that the alleged offender simply had the intent to distribute substances in their possession, when that may not be true. Although possession with the intent to distribute sounds like a lesser crime, courts in Pennsylvania will attempt to enforce similar penalties to that of drug trafficking.
The Consequences of an Alleged Drug Trafficking Charge
Drug trafficking and drug crimes in general carry some of the most diverse and harsh punishments in Pennsylvania. Luckily, state charges in Pennsylvania don’t follow mandatory minimums, but courts can still enforce strict and unfair punishments. There’s also the fact that this charge is typically a felony; This means that individuals who manage to get probation over prison will still face immense difficulties in academic and professional fields for the rest of their life. Factors that can change the punishment of a drug trafficking charge include past criminal history, the schedule of the substance that was allegedly involved in the trafficking, the amount of the substance and the type of the drug. If an individual is convicted of drug trafficking charges, they can face a sentence of up to 20 years in a state or federal prison.
How Our Pennsylvania-Based Lawyers Can Defuse and Dismiss Drug Trafficking Charges
One of our experienced criminal defense attorneys can help you explore a number of options to dispute or flat-out dismiss heavy drug trafficking charges. One effective strategy that can be used is claiming and proving that the substance involved in the charge didn’t belong to you in the first place. Some examples of this include claiming you were framed by a peer or law enforcement and/or claiming that you were in the wrong area at the wrong time and that you didn’t intend to distribute/traffic the substances in the first place. This strategy can dismiss charges or drop them to a smaller possession charge that will carry significantly less penalties.
Overall, our attorneys understand that drug trafficking charges can be absolutely terrifying for an individual and their family. We can help you understand the legal process and provide professional guidance through each step of an often lengthy and confusing process; Some examples of things we can do are devising a strategy and/or defense in the case, helping you consider when a plea bargain is “worth it” and standing up for you when a law enforcement officer violates your rights in any way. We are here for you in and out of the courtroom to passionately defend your rights and ensure the best possible outcome, so contact us today to schedule a free consultation.
Cocaine use has seen a significant drop in recent years, but addiction treatment programs in Philadelphia have still seen large amounts of people entering them to treat cocaine addiction; Courts also still see tons of cases related to the possession and distribution of cocaine. Individuals charged with the possession of cocaine in Philadelphia can face expensive fines and large prison sentences if they’re convicted; In fact, even small amounts can lead to incredibly harsh punishments. These charges can also be risen to trafficking or intent to distribute charges in severe situations; Charges can also be taken to a federal level where stricter consequences come into play.
Luckily a cocaine possession charge can be disputed by our highly experienced criminal defense attorneys. Michale Fienman in particular has extensive experience in representing individuals charged with drug possession charges and can employ effective strategies to lessen or dismiss charges.
The Specific Laws Surrounding Cocaine Possession and the Consequences They Can Bring
Being indicted with a cocaine possession charge in Philadelphia is a serious offense. This is because Philadelphia still enforces strict mandatory minimum laws that can cause any individual to receive a prison sentence, even if they only possessed a small amount. Possession of cocaine is defined as knowingly/intentionally possessing it for recreational use without a valid prescription and/or license for the possession and use of the substance. Prosecutors and courts can even indict you with charges like possession of paraphernalia without cocaine even being in your possession. Possession charges can be filed as long as the cocaine is found near you or found in your personal property, for example a home or car.
Penalties for individuals convicted of cocaine possession can be incredibly serious. The aforementioned mandatory minimums in Philadelphia guarantee at least a year in prison and/or $5000 in fines, even if it is your first offense. Repeated offenses can add another year to the minimum; For example, two years in prison for a second offense and three years for a third offense. Other factors can also influence sentencing; These factors include the amount of cocaine possessed, other drugs in your possession, manufacturing of cocaine and the cultivation and/or planting of coca plants. To make matters worse, a cocaine possession charge will almost always be considered a felony, which can cause serious repercussions for the rest of your professional and academic career; It can be considered a misdemeanor in some cases though, although some employers and academic institutions will still deny people on drug charges alone, irregardless of severity.
Strategies Our Attorneys Employ to Fight Cocaine Possession Charges and Why You Should Seek Their Services
If you’re charged with possession of cocaine, you don’t have to worry, our experienced attorneys are here to help you lessen possibly severe sentences or dismiss the charges brought against you altogether. We recognize that law enforcement can entrap individuals and/or the cocaine the court is alleging you to possess may not have belonged to you in the first place. We’re also here to defend your rights from law enforcement that may perform an illegal search and seizure. You don’t have to worry if you don’t understand the complicated legal process in courts either, we’re here to guide you through this process and help you determine things like when you should accept plea bargains, when your rights may have been violated and develop multiple options to dispute the charges; We can also explain complicated legal terms and codes that courts use, so you’ll never feel out-of-the-loop.
Overall, you should immediately retain an experienced attorney if you’re facing cocaine possession charges; Our criminal defense lawyers specifically can help you seriously lessen punishments or dismiss the charges altogether. The prosecution is likely already building a case against you, so why not start building one for yourself so you can defend your reputation and guarantee your freedom. Contact us today and we can immediately schedule a free consultation.
Philadelphia Possession Of Drugs Lawyers
The state and federal laws make prohibit the use or possession of controlled substances in Philadelphia. Examples of such substances include heroin, crack cocaine, methamphetamine, marijuana, powder cocaine, PCP, THC, and drug paraphernalia. The law is also harsh to those found in possession of specific prescription drugs. Some of the highly controlled prescription drugs include Ambien, Adderall, Oxycontin, fentanyl, valium, morphine, methadone, Xanax, and Vicodin.
In the state of Pennsylvania, each count of drug possession is charged separately, and it may attract a hefty fine and lengthy prison terms. The charges for drug possession depend on a variety of factors that include the type of drug at hand, the amount, past convictions, and the intent of possessing such drugs. In Philadelphia, drug possession laws fall into two categories:
• Simple possession (where you possess drugs for personal use)
• Possession with intent to distribute.
The state laws define possession of a controlled substance as the willful act of possessing a controlled or counterfeit substance by an individual without proper prescription or by a practitioner who is not licensed by the appropriate state board.
Possession with intent to deliver
Any individual found to create, distribute, or possess controlled substances can be charged under the state and federal drug laws.Individuals found in possession of small quantities of the drugs may be charged with a misdemeanor while those with large quantities may face felony charges.
Possession of drug paraphernalia
In Philadelphia, drug possession laws also prohibit an individual from being in possession of drug paraphernalia such as crack pipes, syringes, and bongs. Being in possession of drug paraphernalia can cost you up to $2,500 in fines and a one-year jail term.
Long term effects of drug possession charges in Philadelphia
Drug possession charges can put a tag on your life forever. If a drug possession conviction goes through, it can cost you hefty fines, lengthy jail term, mandatory suspension of driver’s license, probation or even compulsory community service.
Besides, drug possession charges can also affect your current job and also ruin your future career prospects. Many people have lost their job due to drug charges. Teachers, daycare employees and other individuals who work with children are at a higher risk of losing their jobs. Drug charges also affect other individuals such as truck and commercial vehicle drivers, taxi drivers, and pilots.
In Philadelphia, the ‘war on drugs’ does not spare even first-time offenders. An individual found in possession of heroin will face stiffer penalties than those found in possession of marijuana in Philadelphia. If you have been indicted with drug possession in Philadelphia, you need to take the necessary steps to build a strong defense by hiring an aggressive drug possession lawyer.
Eligibility for the Accelerated Rehabilitative Disposition (ARD) program in Philadelphia
The purpose of the ARD program is to help first time offenders- who are not criminals to clean their criminal drug record after meeting specific requirements. If it’s your first to be charged with possession of small amounts of marijuana, the ARD program can help you to get back to a normal life with no criminal charge on your name.
Individuals who chose to take this route must complete the probation period and pay their fines. They can then apply for the expunction of their crimes.
Appealing for drug possession charges in Philadelphia
Most of the individuals found in possession of drugs believe that they have no options and hence they easily plead guilty to the charges. However, it’s worth noting that conviction doesn’t mark the end of your case. You are still eligible to pursue post-conviction options even after pleading guilty.
Remember that you must first be convicted of the drug possession crime before you can launch an appeal. Once the sentence has been passed, a drug possession lawyer in Philadelphia can help you in either filing a collateral appeal or a direct appeal.
Philadelphia Possession of Heroin Lawyers
Heroin use certainly is not anything new, but the opioid crisis in the United States has reached unprecedented levels in the past few years. Even though action has been taken in various ways across the country to help with this crisis, it’s possible that things will get worse before they get better. In the meantime, more than 900 people die each week in the United States from opioid-related causes, and experts say that the death rates related to this crisis may still continue to grow even more in the coming years.
Because of the severity of the heroin crisis in Pennsylvania and across the United States, lawmakers and courts take heroin-related charges very seriously. Possession of heroin is a serious charge in Pennsylvania. It is not usually wise to handle this type of legal situation on your own. Instead, a lawyer who has helped those with heroin charges should be hired to help you.
Heroin Charges Should Be Taken Seriously
Some people are under the impression that they have to be caught with large amounts of heroin in order to face serious charges. Others believe that those who sell heroin are the ones who face more serious charges and that those who are just users of heroin don’t have too much to worry about. It is dangerous to believe these things, however.
For one thing, you don’t have to be caught with a large amount of heroin in order to face serious charges. Even a small amount of heroin can lead to serious consequences. Additionally, you don’t actually have to be caught with the heroin in your hand, pocket or purse, either. If you have heroin in your car or in your home, for example, you can still be charged.
Additionally, you should know that even first-time offenses can be a serious matter when heroin is involved. For example, even if the possession of heroin charge that you are currently facing is your first offense, you could still be facing a whopping $5,000 in fines and up to a year in prison. If you have been convicted in the past, then you could be facing even more serious consequences. For example, those who are caught in possession of heroin for a second time face up to two years in prison, and those who are caught in possession of heroin for a third time face up to three years in prison.
Handling Your Case Properly is Important
The steps that you take before and after your arrest can have a big impact on your case. It is very important to be careful about what you say if you don’t have a lawyer present while you’re talking to the police, for example. Waiting to hire a lawyer or not hiring an attorney at all can also put you at serious risk.
How Can a Philadelphia Possession of Heroin Lawyer Help You?
If you’re unsure of whether or not it’s really necessary to hire a lawyer to help you with your case, you should know that experienced drug attorneys can help in various ways. For one thing, your lawyer can determine whether or not the police officer who searched your car actually had probable cause to pull you over and search your vehicle in the first place. Also, depending on the situation — such as your previous criminal record and the amount of heroin that you were caught with when you were arrested — your lawyer might be able to work out a deal so that you can go to rehab or seek another type of drug treatment instead of serving active jail or prison time.
Getting arrested for possession of heroin is a serious matter, and it should be handled as such. Learning more about the charges and consequences that you’re facing and talking with an attorney can help you handle the situation the right way. Just make sure that you hire a lawyer who has experience in helping others with heroin-related charges for best results.
Philadelphia Possession of Steroids Lawyers
While heroin and opiates are dangerous drugs to possess, you can also be charged with possession if you have steroids on your person. Steroids are often used to build your muscles while adding improvement to how you perform in an athletic nature. You can get steroids from friends and family members, at nutrition stores, and by contacting your doctor to get healthy steroids. You can also get products on the internet. However, some of the steroids that you get might not be safe for you to use. Some of them can also be illegal to possess. Officers sometimes perform undercover purchases in order to find those who are possessing steroids in an illegal manner.
It’s common for you to want to post pictures of yourself online after seeing the benefits that steroids give to your muscles and the rest of your body. You might talk to the people you go to the gym with or those who are online and who use the same types of steroids. When you post this information, you sometimes increase your chances of being charged with possession. You don’t need to have a large amount of anabolic steroids in your possession to be charged and to be punished. You could have only one week’s worth of steroids on your person for you to face serious consequences. There are several different types of anabolic steroids that are considered Schedule III drugs. If an officer finds steroids on your person or in your possession in any way, then you could face being in prison for up to one year. You could also have to pay at least $1,000 in fines. Your criminal history will be taken into consideration when you go to court. An attorney can offer assistance and determine whether there was probable cause in finding the steroids in the first place. Your attorney can also approach the court to try to have your charges and your sentence reduced so that you spend as little time as possible in jail or so that you don’t go to jail at all. Sometimes, an attorney can try to get you into a rehab center or a drug addiction program in exchange for staying out of jail.
If an officer discovers that you have only enough steroids that are normally used for a typical cycle, then you can still be charged with intent to sell. This would be because you have enough of the drug to deliver to someone else for the other person to use as well. If you’re charged with selling steroids or intending to sell steroids, then you’re looking at a felony offense. This would mean that you could spend up to five years in prison if you’re convicted and have fines of up to $15,000. There is a possibility that an officer has observed your behavior using steroids for some time. Once there is enough evidence to charge you with the crime of possession, then the officer will likely arrest you at a location that has been monitored as well. Your home is usually the first place officers will start when making an arrest. Sometimes, officers will talk to the people you associate with in order to make other arrests as well. A search warrant could be issued so that the officers can check your home as well as locations where you’ve used the steroids, such as a gym or your business.
When you’re arrested, you shouldn’t say anything to the officer. You need to speak with an attorney to discuss why you had the steroids and whether they were obtained in a legal manner. Any details from an informant will often be examined by the attorney to try to put the information in a negative light in the court’s eyes.