Drug Distribution Charges
Representation from a Santa Clarita Drug Crime Lawyer
Drug distribution generally refers to the act of providing or delivering drugs to others. This offense is usually associated with drug sales. Drug trafficking, which is a higher level of drug distribution, involves distributing larger amounts of drugs and could involve bringing drugs across crossing county, state or international borders. Trafficking charges are punished at a more severe level than distribution charges.
When you are accused of distributing drugs, there are many factors that need to be considered when determining what type of penalties you might be facing. Some of these factors include the type of drug you are accused of distributing, the amount of the drug that was involved, the location of the alleged offense, the age of the person you are accused of distributing to and your criminal background. At the Law Offices of David M. Wallin, we have a team of dedicated Santa Clarita criminal defense lawyers who can help you assess your situation and determine the best methods for carrying out your defense. We have experience in handling all types of criminal cases, including those that involve various
California's Laws Regarding Drug Distribution
California law defines distribution as delivering a controlled substance to another person outside of lawful practices (such as the administration or dispensation of a drug by a qualified individual for medical use). This offense can include both narcotics and prescription drugs that are being unlawfully dispensed or sold. Law enforcement officers and prosecutors will use the specific circumstances of the alleged offense to determine whether actual distribution or attempted distribution occurred. For example, if the drugs were separated in small bags or packages, this could be a sign of drug distribution. In fact, law enforcement officers often set up sting operations to catch individuals who are distributing drugs.
A person convicted of drug distribution in California can be forced to spend months in jail or several years in prison, depending on the specific details of the offense. He or she could also be subject to thousands of dollars in fines and potential orders to complete certain types of counseling or education programs. Because there is such a broad spectrum of drugs and various laws that apply to different drug amounts, it is best to consult with a qualified legal professional to determine the severity of the penalties you could be given upon conviction.
There are certain enhancements that can lead to additional years in prison and thousands of dollars in additional fines. These enhancements can be given to adults who carry out the following actions when committing drug crimes (including drug distribution):
- Selling or distributing a controlled substance to a minor
- Soliciting, inducing or intimidating a minor in an attempt to get that minor to participate in a drug offense
- Committing a drug crime involving certain substances on or near a church, synagogue, child day care facility, public or private youth center, playground or public pool during hours or operation, or when minors are present
- Committing a drug offense involving certain substances on or within 1,000 feet of school grounds during hours of operation, or when minors are present (includes elementary, junior high and high and high schools, as well as vocational schools)
Harsher penalties can also be given when defendants have previous drug crime convictions. Even though it is always advised to have a strong criminal defender on your side, high-quality legal representation becomes even more crucial when a person is at risk of receiving sentence enhancements.
Securing a Solid Defense Plan
There are a couple of ways you could be unfairly charged with drug distribution. First, you might have been falsely accused—perhaps the drugs were planted on you, or perhaps you were an innocent bystander who was in the wrong place at the wrong time. Second, you might have been carrying out a lesser crime that got blown out of proportion. For example, you might have had drugs in your possession for personal use with no intent to deliver or sell the substances to others. In both cases, you will need a seasoned lawyer who can help you fight the charges and penalties you are facing.
Our attorneys, who have 40 years of combined experience, might be able to help you reach an acquittal, dismissed charges, reduced charges or other less damaging outcomes. If law enforcement officers violated your rights in any way (such as by unlawful search and seizure), we can help you use these violations to your advantage. Contact the Law Offices of David M. Wallin to get started in building a strong defense plan!