If you possess even a small quantity of an illegal or illicit drug and you transport it with the intent to sell or even just share it, you could face a drug trafficking charge. This is considered a serious felony with significant legal consequences.
Contact a Tolleson drug trafficking lawyer immediately if you were arrested for transporting drugs. Our reliable drug defense attorneys put their skills and experience to work to get you the best outcome the evidence allows.
Arizona law treats any transportation of drugs with the intent to provide them to someone else as potential trafficking. In most cases, someone would face trafficking charges if police found more than the threshold amount of a specific drug. However, even when police find a quantity more suited to personal use, they could bring trafficking charges if there was evidence the drugs were intended for distribution.
The threshold amount is a quantity that varies by substance. The law at Arizona Revised Statute § 13-3401(36) defines the threshold quantities for various widely used illegal drugs. If the law does not specify a quantity, the threshold is an amount with a street value exceeding $1,000.
Anyone suspected of moving illegal drugs across an international or state border could face federal drug trafficking charges in Tolleson.
The most effective defense is one that is tailored to the particular circumstances. The prosecution’s evidence and the defendant’s criminal history strongly influence defense strategy. Some cases merit serious consideration of a plea bargain and others call for a vigorous challenge to the evidence.
Police misconduct often provides a means to dismiss a case or at least reduce charges. An improper search or unauthorized electronic surveillance could cause a judge to suppress illegally obtained evidence. Police mishandling of the drugs could allow a Tolleson attorney to challenge the accuracy of the state’s testing regarding the identity and quantity of the substance.
Drug trafficking requires a prosecutor to prove the defendant’s intent, and although they can use circumstantial evidence, proof of intent is often weak. A skilled criminal defense lawyer could exploit the weakness to achieve a lesser charge or even an acquittal before a jury.
Drug trafficking is a Class 2 felony, with a presumptive prison sentence of five years for first offenders, but a range of three years with mitigating circumstances to 12 years, nine months with aggravating circumstances. Sentences for offenders with prior convictions are harsher. Someone with one prior conviction faces a presumptive sentence of nine years and three months, and the presumptive sentence for someone with two prior convictions is 15 years and nine months.
Some offenders with substance abuse issues may be eligible for Maricopa County drug court, which is a rigorous program that usually lasts several years. It requires participants to get drug treatment, participate in support groups, submit to frequent drug testing, and check in regularly with a probation officer and the judge. It is a valuable alternative to prison for some offenders who are not eligible for less rigorous forms of probation.
Some non-violent first and second offenders are eligible for probation without prison after a conviction for drug crimes. Probation is not an option if an offender possessed more than the threshold quantity of a drug, or any quantity of methamphetamine. Sometimes a Tolleson attorney could make a plea bargain that requires an offender to admit to possessing less than the threshold amount, and in such cases, probation is a possible outcome if no methamphetamine is involved.
A drug trafficking conviction has lifelong consequences. Give yourself the best chance of avoiding that result by engaging an experienced Tolleson drug trafficking lawyer from Grand Canyon Law Group.
Every minute you delay hiring seasoned counsel could hurt your case. Call us now and learn what may be possible.