The drug laws in Trenton are a complicated set of statutes. While it is certainly illegal to possess or distribute any controlled substance, the seriousness of an offense depends on that substance’s identity, the amount of the substance in question, and what the possessor intended to do with that substance. Nevertheless, a conviction for any drug offense in Trenton is a felony that carries severe punishments.
Even so, drug charges in Trenton are among the most defensible. Because many of these cases rely on search warrants and confidential informants to gather evidence, the consequences for an individual’s Constitutional rights are always in question. Additionally, prosecutors must rely on modes of scientific examination to identify substances that are not always accurate.
A Trenton drug lawyer may be able to help people facing drug charges. A drug attorney could work to investigate the legality of the arrest, to preserve a person’s Constitutional rights, and to present defenses in court to preserve an individual’s freedoms.
The State’s criminal code strictly controls the possession of certain substances without a doctor’s prescription. This includes both street drugs such as cocaine or heroin and any medication that is only acquirable through a pharmacy. The law places these substances into one of five schedules for the purpose of determining the dangerousness of these substances. This schedule format is essential to determining the potential penalties for a possession conviction.
According to the Official Code of Georgia Annotated §16-13-30(c), any person who possesses or purchases a drug on schedule I, or a narcotic on schedule II, is guilty of a felony. These substances include opiates, opiate derivatives, and cocaine. Any conviction carries a mandatory minimum sentence of one year in prison. However, the maximum penalty is tied to the amount of the substance. The most severe penalties could result in a prison sentence of 15 years.
Of course, the penalties for possession of illegal substances also apply to prescription medications and hallucinogens. No matter the substance, a conviction is always a felony that carries a one-year minimum prison sentence. According to O.C.G.A. §16-13-30(j), the penalties even apply to charges involving marijuana. A Trenton marijuana lawyer could help people facing these sorts of charges.
In addition to the penalties for simple possession, the State also punishes the distribution of illegal substances. These are always more serious charges, and simple distribution under O.C.G.A. §16-13-30(d) mandates a minimum sentence of 5 years in prison for a first conviction. Subsequent convictions increase the mandatory minimum, and repeat offenders could even face life imprisonment. A Trenton narcotics lawyer could help to provide more information into the various version of drug offenses in Trenton.
As in any other criminal case, the prosecution bears the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. In many drug cases, this could be more difficult than it appears. This is because police officers rarely witness a drug sale and may only search a person’s body, car, or home with probable cause of criminal activity.
The most typical way to challenge the legality of a search is to contest the warrant. Police officers must obtain a warrant to search homes and often rely on flimsy hearsay or the testimony of unreliable informants to gather this probable cause. A Trenton drug possession lawyer could help to contest the legality of search warrants.
Drug possession attorney could also work to question the identification of a drug. While the identity of a drug may seem obvious, prosecutors must perform chemical analyses to call a drug heroin, cocaine, or marijuana at trial. If there was an error in the testing process, or the sample left the chain of custody, a narcotics attorney could question the identity of that substance. In short, every defendant has rights, and a Trenton drug attorney fights to preserve those rights.
Drug charges come in many shapes and sizes in Trenton. The only thing that every charge has in common is that these are felonies where a conviction results in a mandatory prison sentence and remains on a person’s criminal record.
It is plain to see why it is important to fight back during any drug case in Trenton. This includes disputing the identity of the substance, questioning whether that substance was even in your control, and fighting to suppress evidence gained through the use of illegal search warrants.
A Trenton marijuana and narcotics attorney may be able to help. No matter what kind of drug is involved in the case, or whether you are facing allegations of possession, distribution, or trafficking, contact a drug lawyer today to let them get to work helping you.