Drug Charges/Drug Offenses in Minnesota
Drug charges come in many different varieties.
Regardless of the offense, penalties may be severe. For even a
first offense on a possession with intent to sell, state sentencing
guidelines often result in up to 12 years in prison. In the
federal system, the penalties may be even more severe.
Civil penalties may also apply. Police authorities make money by confiscating your property.
If you were arrested for drug offenses, property can be seized.
This includes cash that the person may have had with them, vehicles they
may have been using or even homes where drug offense are alleged to have
occurred. The evidence will be held
without releasing it so long as there is an ongoing investigation.
Often, prosecutors will attempt to forfeit the property permanently.
It is often possible to file a lawsuit seeking the return of your
The collateral consequences of a
conviction are also severe. Even a minor drug offense conviction may
result in the inability to work in certain fields. For example, a
drug conviction can disqualify a person from ever working in the health
care field in almost any capacity. It may also impact employment
in many other careers, particularly jobs that require a background check
or security clearance. Background checks may also be
performed for those seeking to rent a residence. A conviction may
result in a denial. Finally, a conviction for a drug offense can
have a significant impact on immigration and, in some instance, may
result in deportation for non U.S. citizens.
Given the significant impact of drug
offenses, consulting with experienced legal counsel is imperative at an
early stage so that all defenses can be explored and evidence
Criminal drug charges may include:
- Prescription Fraud
- Drug Possession
- Intent to Sell
- Drug Conspiracy
- Operation a Meth Lab
- Possessing Material for a Meth Lab
- Possession of Drug Paraphernalia
State and federal law enforcement authorities often work together on
drug enforcement cases. Moreover, counties often share resources
to create drug task forces whose primary assignment is investigating
Once these law enforcement task forces believe they have enough
evidence to charge an individual, they will often postpone charges,
seeking, instead, to cast a wider net. They do this by trying to
convince the suspected individual to provide them names of other drug
dealers or users and, often, seeking to engage that suspect in drug
purchases. In this way, law enforcement builds a small case into a
much larger case by building a using the suspected individual.
Suspected individuals often feel compelled to cooperate. They
mistakenly believe that by doing so, they will never be charged.
The fact is that the charges may not be filed immediately, even for a
year or more, but they will come. Moreover, the use of individuals who face charges of
their own, often means that they are motivated to come up with some
evidence against others, whether it exists or not. In the end, it is not
uncommon for the legal authorities to violate constitutional rights to
be free from warrantless searches and seizures or fifth amendment rights
related to custodial interrogation. Often, these issues can
be the back bone of a defense case where suppression of evidence or
statements is critical.
Possession of drugs or drug paraphernalia
can often be challenged arguing that the person charged did not have
control of the seized contraband. An officer must also have a
reasonable, articulable suspicion of a particular criminal offense in
order to stop a person. That is true whether they are walking, standing
or driving. Often, when the basis for the stop is explored, the
reasonable suspicion is found lacking and the subsequent discovery of
drugs suppressed. Another critical factor is whether the officers
involved conducted a constitutional search. Except for certain
exception, the officers would require consent to search or have a
search warrant in hand. Even a search warrant must be supported by
probable cause to believe a crime has been committed. If the
search is determined to be improper, the drugs seized may be suppressed.
Even the weight and purity of the drug may be critical and can be
challenged to reduce the drug offense charged.
have 16 years of experience in defending individuals against criminal
drug charges in State and Federal Court. I can assist you.
You will find my fees are reasonable and my representation aggressive.
For a FREE consultation call Attorney Maury D. Beaulier at
||For legal representation
Illegal Drugs & Related Offenses:
- Anhydrous Ammonia
- Prescription Fraud
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