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Federal Drug Offenses

Federal Drug Offense Defense Lawyers

Are you facing a federal drug offense?

Federal drug violations are very difficult charges to face and unfortunately, your case will not be an easy one. Federal drug prosecutors are known for being particularly tough against drug offenders, and federal court in general is an entirely different ballgame. You will need a skilled and experienced federal criminal defense lawyer on your side fighting for you every step of the way. At Eisner Gorin LLP, our attorneys can defend you from the any type of federal drug offenses.

The majority of drug laws are contained in Title 21 of the United States Code. Under federal law, each drug is designated as belonging to one of five “schedules.” There are a variety of factors considered when the DEA determines under which schedule a particular drug should be categorized. Recently, Congress passed the First Step Act, which has made a significant change in sentencing for drug related crimes.

According to the DEA, some of the factors considered include: the drug's actual or relative potential for abuse, scientific evidence of the drug's pharmacological effects, the state of current scientific knowledge regarding the substance, the drug's history and current pattern of abuse, the scope, duration, and significance of abuse, any risk there is to the public health, and the drug's psychic or physiological dependence liability.

After considering all the factors, the drug is then categorized into one of the five drug schedules. The schedules are defined as stated below:

Schedule I

  • The drug or other substance has a high potential for abuse.
  • The drug or other substance has no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States.
  • There is a lack of accepted safety for use of the drug or other substance under medical supervision.
  • Schedule I drugs include marijuana and heroin.

Schedule II

  • The drug or other substance has a high potential for abuse.
  • The drug or other substance has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States or a currently accepted medical use with severe restrictions.
  • Abuse of the drug or other substance may lead to severe psychological or physical dependence.
  • Schedule II drugs include morphine and cocaine.

Schedule III

  • The drug or other substance has less potential for abuse than the drugs or other substances in schedules I and II.
  • The drug or other substance has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States.
  • Abuse of the drug or other substance may lead to moderate or low physical dependence or high psychological dependence.

Schedule IV

  • The drug or other substance has a low potential for abuse relative to the drugs or other substances in Schedule III.
  • The drug or other substance has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States.
  • Abuse of the drug or other substance may lead to limited physical dependence or psychological dependence relative to the drugs or other substances in Schedule III.

Schedule V

  • The drug or other substance has a low potential for abuse relative to the drugs or other substances in Schedule IV.
  • The drug or other substance has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States.
  • Abuse of the drug or other substances may lead to limited physical dependence or psychological dependence relative to the drugs or other substances in Schedule IV.

Drug Cultivation

According to federal law, it is illegal to grow, sell, distribute, transport, possess or traffic marijuana. Most federal cultivation cases that involve marijuana are prosecuted as a felony federal drug crime. A cultivating offense includes possession of marijuana seeds, planting seeds and drying the plants and processing them. Normally, police will charge a individual with cultivation and possession with intent to sell if at least two plants are discovered.

California state law allows marijuana use for medical purposes. However, federal prosecutors can and will pursue criminal charges in a federal court for a marijuana cultivation case.

If you are convicted, you could be facing jail time, probation, large fines and even asset forfeiture of your personal property. Therefore, it is in your best interest to speak with a qualified attorney if you are facing criminal charges.

Every federal drug cultivation case is unique and requires its own defense strategy. Our decades of federal defense law practice have allowed us to develop solid legal techniques to aggressively fight on your behalf. For example, if police conducted an illegal search, it could lead to a reduction in your charges or even complete case dismissal.

Drug Importation

Federal drug importation is the crime of bringing illegal controlled substances into the United States from another state or country. In many cases, this type of federal criminal offense is connected with drug trafficking, particularly when large quantities of drugs are imported from other countries.

The importation of methamphetamine, cocaine, marijuana, heroin, ecstasy, prescription drugs or any other type of illegal drugs is considered a serious federal drug crime. Illegal drug smuggling operations from Mexico are usually complex operations using a variety of techniques to bypass border inspection stations.

If you have been arrested by federal authorities for drug importation, you will probably face felony criminal prosecution in a Federal Criminal Court. Prosecutors will aggressively attempt to secure a conviction and have maximum penalties enforced. A federal drug crime conviction can result in incarceration in a federal prison, large fines, and a permanent criminal history.

We have extensive experience helping clients who have found themselves facing federal drug crime charges. From our decades of practice, we have learned how to attack the case presented by the prosecutor. Whether we attack the federal case on the grounds of an illegal search and seizure, violation of constitutional rights, insufficient evidence, or a lack of physical evidence, we will pursue every single legal defense on your behalf.

We are well-known by federal prosecutors and judges due to our frequent appearances in their court. We serve clients in all U. S. District Courts in the state of California, including the Central District of California, and throughout the United States.

Drug Manufacturing

Drug manufacturing means any person who prepares, produces any illegal drugs where the drugs are sold to a consumer. It's illegal to intentionally possesses laboratory glassware or chemical solvent where the value exceeds $100, with the intent to manufacture a controlled substance, is guilty of a crime.

Federal drug manufacturing criminal charges includes growing marijuana, operating a methamphetamine lab, gathering supplies to manufacture drugs and possessing manufacturing equipment.

Federal prosecutors will aggressively prosecute individuals charged with federal drug crimes. A conviction can result in harsh penalties, and the length of time in a federal prison can be twice as long as a conviction for drug possession or drug trafficking.

Your prior criminal record, manufacturing close to a school or playground of if you were in possession of a weapon can lead to additional federal crime charges and a more severe penalty. A firearm charge in itself could lead to several more years in prison if the charge is in connection to the drug crime charges.

The many years of successful criminal defense has allowed us to develop solid legal strategies that has proven effective in all federal courts in California. We use our knowledge to pursue solutions that minimize the criminal consequences. Don't face your federal drug manufacturing charges with a less experienced law firm. We can help preserve your freedom and your record.

Drug Possession

Drug crimes range in severity from state crimes like possession of marijuana or drug paraphernalia to felony crimes such as drug trafficking and drug conspiracy. Certain drug crimes can be prosecuted in federal court.

In California, federal drug crimes can include manufacturing, trafficking, smuggling of illegal drugs and marijuana cultivation. Controlled substances are narcotics, opiates, depressants, hallucinogens, and stimulants. The most common type of drugs involved in drug possession criminal charges include methamphetamine, cocaine, ecstasy, heroin and prescription drugs.

If you are now facing a federal drug crime charge, it is very important that you have qualified legal counsel on your side. California Law varies widely between misdemeanor and felony charges and usually depends on the type of drug and quantity seized.

The state of California leads the nation in drug offender incarceration and has seen a huge increase in the number of offenders sentenced to state prisons. If you are convicted of a federal drug offense, it usually results in a mandatory minimum prison sentence.

How this drug crime is charged depends on the type and quantity of the drugs involved and whether the drugs were only for personal use or there was an intent to sell the drugs. Other factors include prior criminal record, especially a prior drug conviction.

The best legal defense against a drug crime charge is to challenge how the evidence was obtained. You have a constitutional right against illegal search and seizures. This means any illegal evidence seized can't be used in court to convict you. However, you will need the legal services of our experienced lawyers to challenge the method the evidence was obtained. If your attorney is successful, then the evidence is suppressed and the case could be dismissed.

Drug Smuggling

A federal drug smuggling charge is one of the most serious types of narcotics criminal charges. Any type of illegal drug can be used in a drug smuggling case. Methamphetamine, marijuana, cocaine and heroin are commonly smuggled in various amounts. Recently, even prescription drugs have become common in trafficking cases. This could be the result of their availability over the internet.

Prescription medications such as anti-anxiety medications like Xanax or Valium, and painkillers like Oxycotin, Oxycodone and Vicodin are commonly purchased in large quantities and sold for a profit.

In many cases, a drug smuggling accusation is part of a drug conspiracy charge. This means that you are being accused of committing a federal drug crime with another person. In federal court, the prosecutor may not need you actually sold the drugs or that a crime was even committed. They only need to provide evidence that two or more people conspired in an effort to commit a crime.

A drug smuggling conviction can lead to imprisonment, large fines, court cost and probation. A federal drug crime conviction can permanently impact tour future and your reputation.

If you or a member of you family are have been arrested or under federal investigation for drug smuggling anywhere in the state of California, you will need to retain the legal services of a law firm that has experience dealing with these type of criminal charges. Our federal criminal attorneys have decades of experience and have a proven track record of successful cases. We serve clients throughout the state of California in all United States District Courts.

Drug Trafficking

A conviction in federal court for drug trafficking can result in a sentence of up to 40 years in a federal prison. Federal drug trafficking crimes are covered in Title 21 of the United States Code. The severity of the penalties depend on several factors that include:

  • The type and amount of the drug involved.
  • Evidence of drug trafficking such as large amount of cash, weapons, numerous cell phones, scales.
  • Whether it is your first drug offense.
  • Whether a minor was involved in the drug trafficking.
  • A defendant's criminal history.
  • Whether state or international borders were crossed in the offense.
  • Whether the drugs were distributed to minors or near a school.
  • Whether anyone sustained injuries or killed in the drug offense.

Even if you are a first-time offender, your sentence could include prison time if you are convicted. It can also include property forfeiture, large fines and deportation if you are not a United States citizen. The most common type of drugs that are prosecuted in federal court include methamphetamine, cocaine, marijuana, heroin, LSD, PCP and human growth hormone. 21 U.S. Code § 848 defines the crime of continuing criminal enterprise.

If you are under investigation, or have already been arrested for drug trafficking, you will need to speak with a criminal attorney immediately. We have defended hundreds of clients facing serious drug crime charges throughout the state of California. We know how to investigate whether federal authorities violated your Fourth Amendment rights during a stop or search. If a confidential informant was used to collect evidence against you, we know to attack their credibility. Over our many years of criminal defense law practice, we have achieved successful results for our clients.

Certain drug crimes may be considered federal crimes in several different situations. Any drug crime that concerns high volumes or quantities of controlled substances could be considered a federal offense. The schedule of the drug involved in the crime will also affect how the crime will be charged. Schedule I controlled substances have a higher potential for abuse than other drugs, and have no medical use, so if the type of drug involved in the crime was a schedule I substance, the likelihood of it being considered a federal offense increases.

The opioid and prescription drug fraud crisis across the United States has led federal law enforcement agencies to crack down on the sale and distribution of prescription drugs.

Forfeitures and seizures of money and property are typically directly connected to a federal criminal investigation into organized crime, such as drug trafficking and the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO).

Contact Our Federal Criminal Defense Law Firm

Federal drug offenses can carry mandatory minimum sentences if a conviction occurs, and in the federal system, there are limited opportunities for probation and no opportunities for parole. The severe penalties are reason enough to hire a federal crimes attorney. Mandatory minimum sentences require an automatic minimum prison term for certain crimes.

Clients facing federal drug crimes have much at risk, and considering the consequences that can result from a conviction, you will want to go with the most aggressive and skilled attorney you can find. Please, if you are under investigation for a federal offense, or have been formally charged with a federal crime, you should waste no time in contacting our federal drug defense law firm to discuss your case. Call Eisner Gorin LLP at 877-781-1570 or fill out online contact form.

Related Content: DEA Audit and Investigation

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