More and more, observers and authorities, including President Obama, have acknowledged that America’s “War on Drugs” has been a failure. Millions of people are spending years in prison or otherwise under institutional control for non-violent drug offenses. A disproportionate amount of these people are racial minorities, leading critics to charge that federal drug laws are discriminatory.
Despite changes in attitude and policy, laws regarding drug trafficking remain harsh. It is not uncommon for prosecutors to pile on the charges, including:
- Drug transportation
- Drug smuggling or importation
- Conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute
- Drug possession with intent to sell
- Maintaining a “drug” or “stash” house
- Similarly, operating or working in a “grow operation
In addition to charging a trafficking suspect with multiple crimes, the prosecution may seek even higher punishment for certain factors, such as the quantity of drugs allegedly involved, the types of drugs the defendant allegedly was selling, and if police claim the defendant was selling to minors.
An investigation into your alleged drug activities can cost you more than your freedom. Under asset forfeiture, police often have the power to seize your personal property, if they can claim the items were the proceeds of a crime or used in the commission of a crime.
A defense attorney may be able to stop the use of asset forfeiture, and also help you mount a defense against drug charges. If necessary, he or she may be able to negotiate a plea deal that avoids a lengthy prison sentence, or you may be able to prevail at trial.