Understanding the Role of a Federal Drug Lawyer
Facing federal drug charges can be terrifying, but the right federal drug attorney will be ready to advocate for your rights and preserve your future.
Do You Need a Federal Drug Attorney?
Federal prosecutors work hard at indicting people for illegal drugs, and hiring a federal drug attorney may be the only way to retain your freedom.
A drug crime is a serious offense on its own. Plus, federal DC DUI/drug offenses may also be associated with other crimes, including robbery, burglary, carjacking, and homicide. This is one of the main reasons federal law enforcement agencies and the criminal federal court system have cracked down hard and implemented a no-tolerance stance against those charged with committing a drug crime and drug trafficking.
Penalties for a federal drug offense conviction can range from one year in jail to a lifetime in federal prison. However, when a minor offense is committed, a federal drug crime attorney from Scrofano Law may obtain alternative sentencing through programs such as drug diversion, drug court, and drug treatment instead of jail or prison time. It is essential to approach all federal drug cases with personalized client attention and a careful, thorough investigation to determine a superior strategy.
Types of Crimes/Charges
Many drug crimes depend on how often you use the drug. Most legal medications are controlled and are only legal if used as prescribed by the law. If someone prescribed you certain substances, you could use those substances safely. But, taking a pill from someone else can be an offense. Distribution involves selling and delivering controlled substances. Trafficking is equivalent to distribution but has a greater quantity of these drugs. Possession means possessing illegal substances.
Types of Drugs and Relationships to Penalties
It would help if you understood the classification of the drug as a controlled substance. Anything labeled as a controlled substance is something that is controlled legally by the government.
Currently, controlled substances are divided into Schedules of Use. There are five federal schedules of controlled substances based on their potential for abuse in relation to their potential therapeutic benefits.
Schedule I includes the most severe ones for your potential charges and high potential of abuse. It has been found that they have no medical use. Examples of Schedule I drugs include marijuana, heroin, and LSD. Schedule II drugs also have a high potential for abuse, but some are accepted for medical use. Cocaine is an example of a Schedule II drug. Schedule III drugs have accepted medical uses and a lower potential for abuse. These drugs include, for example, anabolic steroids.
Schedule IV and Schedule V substances have a low potential for abuse and can be used for medical purposes. A common example of a Schedule IV drug is Xanax. Schedule V substances include, for example, Codeine.
Penalties for Federal Drug Crimes
Those convicted of drug crimes in federal drug crime cases could face severe penalties and fines. Federal drug crime charges for simple possession can result in up to a year of imprisonment, with fines of $1,000 or more.
When it comes to drug trafficking, the length of a prison sentence depends on the quantity of the drug in question and the type of drug. Under the federal sentencing guidelines, drug trafficking offenses are triggered when an individual is in possession of more than a certain amount of a controlled substance.
If the drug in question is, for example, more than 500 grams of cocaine or more than 100 grams of heroin, individuals convicted of these federal crimes could face not less than 5 years and not more than 40 years in prison.
Drug trafficking, distributing, and manufacturing – 21 U.S. Code 841
Under this code, it’s illegal to manufacture, distribute, and possess drugs with the intent to distribute. If death or a serious injury are caused by this drug crime and there are aggravating factors, you could face a twenty-year minimum sentence.
Drug importation – 21 U.S. Code 952
Drug importation is prohibited pursuant to this code. Federal authorities regulate and prosecute imports in the United States.
Bear in mind that the fact an individual didn’t succeed in distribution, trafficking, or importation of a drug doesn’t matter; they will be subject to the same criminal penalties as if they succeeded in committing these crimes.
Mandatory Minimum Sentence
Some federal criminal charges for drug offenses have a mandatory minimum prison sentence that stipulates the minimum punishment for each of those offenses. Those sentences vary due to the crime committed and can last for five, ten, or even 20 years in prison. Whether or not you have been convicted, you should contact a qualified attorney to get legal representation as soon as you learn about drug felony charges are brought against you.
The Importance of Hiring a Federal Drug Crime Attorney
If you or a loved one has recently been charged with a drug crime, you require the services of a federal drug crime attorney to protect your rights. You are already well aware of the detrimental, devastating effects that these charges can have on your life.
Whether you are facing possession of controlled substances or drug trafficking charges, it is not unlikely that you will be left feeling frightened, isolated, and overwhelmed by the sheer complexities of the legalities you are facing. Your future will be at stake, and you will risk life-altering penalties. The consequences of a DC DUI or drug offense based on federal sentencing guidelines can be extremely severe if convicted.
You simply cannot leave your future up to chance at such a time. It would help if you were confident that you are being represented by someone who truly understands this area of the law by federal prosecutors. With meticulous, exhaustive legal work, federal criminal defense attorneys will be able to help you defend your rights and your future.
The Best Federal Drug Attorney
The best federal drug attorney will explain federal criminal law, the charges, and the potential penalties you face. They will work through the facts and details of your federal case to begin developing a federal criminal defense strategy.
There are many laws at the federal and state level that punish drug-related crimes, and accusations can lead to criminal charges being filed in federal court. Some common federal drug offenses that could result in a federal investigation and charges include, but are not limited to the following:
- Distribution of illegal drugs or other controlled substances
- Drug importation or exportation
- Drug manufacturing
- Drug paraphernalia
- Drug possession
- Drug smuggling
- Drug trafficking charges
- Illegal distribution of prescription medications
Often one action can be charged as several separate crimes. If you are accused of plotting with one or more people to commit a drug-related crime, you could face drug conspiracy charges. These are serious crimes with potentially severe penalties if you receive a guilty verdict.
Depending on the drugs involved, you may be charged with committing more than one federal crime requiring the legal representation of an experienced criminal lawyer.
Federal Drug Crimes Require Legal Services of a Qualified Law Firm
Facing charges for federal drug crimes can be confusing and difficult to navigate because charges can be made in both state and federal courts. Often, local authorities make the arrests, which are then filed at the state level. Under certain circumstances, those same crimes can be charged as a federal criminal offense.
If federal agencies make a drug arrest, the crime will likely be charged according to federal laws. Federal agents will also be involved if there are many drugs or the crime crosses international borders or state lines. A federal offense is investigated and prosecuted aggressively by the federal government resulting in significantly more severe penalties.
The need for competent legal representation
State and local criminal case differences are substantial. Not every criminal lawyer is allowed to take a Federal felony case. You have to get a lawyer who has experience with Federal law and procedure. Federal prosecutors and police departments have huge resources available. The legal teams must do this in the best possible way. Attorney Dennis Boyle is an attorney who worked for many years as an attorney. He then evaluates your situation and develops the strongest and weakest defense possible.
Benefits of Hiring a Federal Drug Attorney
There are many benefits to hiring a federal drug attorney, but the main reason is that these defense lawyers are knowledgeable of federal laws and sentencing requirements. They are quite different from the state courts. A defense attorney familiar with these discrepancies and various defense tactics will have a better chance of successfully defending your case.
Particularly with drug charges, this may dramatically impact the outcome of your case, turning the tides in your favor. For example, in cocaine possession charges, the cocaine itself would be key evidence in the prosecution’s case against you. Suppose your lawyer discovers that the cocaine was obtained without a warrant and successfully has this evidence excluded from your trial. In that case, the federal government will not have a leg to stand on in their attempt to put you behind bars.
Why You Need a Federal Drug Attorney
The reason why you need a federal drug attorney, is that they will know what to look for in your case and may be able to plant reasonable doubt in the minds of the jurors. Potential examples of viable defenses against drug charges may involve illegal search, mishandled evidence, or a confession or statements made by the defendant and presented as evidence that was obtained in violation of the defendant’s rights.
There are different strategies that a drug crime defense lawyer may employ on your behalf to challenge your federal charges. A common defense is proving an unreasonable search and seizure, where federal law enforcement failed to obtain a valid warrant or establish probable cause before searching, seizing evidence, or making an arrest. If the chain of command was broken while federal law enforcement was handling evidence or if a particular piece of evidence was not properly processed or handled, it may be considered inadmissible.
These are just a few examples of potentially successful defense strategies. By evaluating your unique federal drug charges, a skilled lawyer can determine the right approach for your case.
How to Hire a Good Federal Drug Attorney
You need to know how to hire a good federal drug attorney if you are arrested for a controlled substance. Many charges may be circumstantial. For example, prescription drugs are legal for the person they were prescribed to but not for other people. Also, although marijuana has currently accepted medical use in many states, it is still illegal on the federal level.
Suppose your attorney files a motion to suppress evidence based upon a violation of your Fourth Amendment rights. In that case, this will result in any relevant evidence being excluded from your criminal trial. Knowledgeable federal criminal defense attorneys experienced with similar cases may be able to have your charges dismissed.
What to Consider When Hiring a Drug Lawyer
You want to know what to consider when hiring a drug lawyer because you want to secure a favorable outcome. Seek a criminal attorney with whom you are comfortable to develop a strong attorney-client relationship.
Taking the right approach from the very beginning is a skill derived from extensive experience in this field and a great deal of legal knowledge applying to drug crime cases in particular. Every case is different, and the particular strategy may vary. However, there may be hope in even the most seemingly bleak cases.
Contact criminal defense attorneys from Scrofano Law for a risk-free consultation.
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