There are numerous drugs and other substances that are regulated by the government. Whether the substance is marijuana, heroin, or a prescription medication, possessing, transporting, or selling a controlled substance can lead to a drug crime and serious legal trouble.
If you have been arrested and accused of a drug crime, an Alexandria drug lawyer can be the answer. With their legal representation, you can work to defend against the accusation and protect your rights and your future.
The most common and the least severe drug crime in Alexandria is drug possession. Prohibited by Virginia Code Ann. § 18.2-250.1, this offense involves the knowing possession of drugs that are controlled by law or regulation.
Importantly, charges for drug possession do not have to involve an arrest where police find drugs on a suspect’s body – they can also come from a search warrant that finds a controlled substance in a suspect’s home or somewhere else they control.
Just because drug possession is the least severe of the drug crimes in Alexandria does not mean that it is a trivial one to face. While convictions depend on the nature of the drugs found, even the least severe can lead to up to 30 days in jail and a fine of up to $500.
Transporting drugs is a more severe drug crime in Alexandria. Va. Code Ann. § 18.2-248.01 is the statute that prohibits trafficking drugs over the state border. Because drug trafficking charges involve a relatively large amount of drugs, law enforcement presumes that a defendant meant to sell it at some point. As a result, the penalties of a conviction for drug trafficking are significant, carrying jail sentences of between five and 40 years in jail in some circumstances.
Finally, drug distribution is the most severe kind of drug crime in Alexandria. A conviction for selling drugs – especially if the buyer was a minor or if the sale took place in a prohibited area, like near a school – can carry a jail sentence of up to 50 years.
Drug crimes in Alexandria are serious. Being accused of one can be one of the most stressful things that someone can be put through. There are defenses that can prevent the allegation from turning into a conviction, though. With the help of an Alexandria drug lawyer, a charge can be challenged with legal arguments and defenses tailored to a defendant’s particular situation.
One of the most common defenses to a drug crime is that the defendant was not aware of the drugs in their possession. In many situations, carrying a friend’s backpack or giving them a ride in the car can lead to drug charges as police presume the drugs belonged to the defendant.
Drug charges can also be combated with a defendant’s Fourth Amendment rights. Police are prohibited from making searches or seizures that are unreasonable. Many drug investigations, however, involve just these types of searches.
If this is the case and an Alexandria drug attorney invokes a suspect’s Fourth Amendment rights, the evidence obtained from the search can be excluded from trial. In many cases, this dooms the prosecutor’s case.
If you have been accused of committing a drug crime in Alexandria, hiring an attorney can make a huge difference in the outcome of your case.
By reaching out to an Alexandria drug lawyer, you can rest assured that your interests and your rights are being protected by a legal professional.
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