Federal Drug Trafficking
In July, seventeen individuals were charged with federal drug trafficking of both powder and crack cocaine in central Connecticut. Although drug trafficking is also prohibited by state law, the defendants in this case face federal charges as a result of their use of the U.S. mail to transport the substances across state lines. In addition to drug trafficking, the individuals are charged with conspiracy to distribute, and conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute. If convicted, the defendants could face a minimum of ten years in prison.
All drug charges should be taken seriously, but federal drug offenses are even more aggressively investigated and prosecuted than their state counterparts, so if you have been accused of federal drug trafficking, it is critical to speak with an experienced Norwalk drug charges attorney who will aggressively represent your interests.
What Qualifies as Drug Trafficking?
Under federal law, drug trafficking laws prohibit the selling, transportation, and unlawful importation of controlled substances. Although there are a number of different types of drugs that fall under the category of a controlled substance, there are six main types of drugs that account for most trafficking offenses. These substances include:
- Powder cocaine;
- Crack cocaine;
- Heroin; and
Generally, when a person is arrested with a large amount of one of these types of drugs in his or her possession, that individual will be presumed to have had the intent to sell the substance, which in turn can lead to charges of drug trafficking.
The penalties for a drug trafficking conviction depend on a variety of factors, including:
- The type and amount of controlled substance in question;
- The area of distribution;
- Whether the defendant had a weapon in his or her possession at the time of arrest;
- Whether the accused had a leadership role in the offense;
- Whether the defendant was only a minor participant;
- The defendant’s criminal history;
- Whether the offense involved an injury to another person; and
- Whether the offense involved crossing state or national borders.
Although federal judges do have a certain amount of discretion in sentencing those who have been convicted of drug trafficking, they are also required to stay within the federal sentencing guidelines set by Congress. Fortunately, there are defenses available to those who have been accused of drug trafficking, including that:
- The police conducted an illegal search of the defendant’s person or property;
- The defendant did not intend to sell the substance in question; and
- The defendant did not have knowledge of any drug trafficking activities.
To learn more about these and other possible defenses that may apply to your case, please contact a member of our criminal defense legal team today.
Call a Norwalk Drug Charges Attorney for a Free Case Evaluation
Being arrested for and charged with a serious federal offense can leave you feeling frightened and overwhelmed. Fortunately, you don’t have to go through this difficult time alone if you retain an experienced attorney who can help you formulate a defense, so if you were arrested for a drug-related crime, please contact the Law Offices of Daniel P. Weiner today to set up a meeting with a passionate Norwalk drug charges attorney who can evaluate your case.