Bronx Drug Paraphernalia Lawyer
Many individuals do not realize that it is also illegal to possess certain items if they are used to aid in the distribution of drugs. Non-illegal items such as packaging materials, scales, or chemical dilutants can be the subject of criminal charges. If police believe that someone is engaged in the distribution of illegal substances, they may infer they are using these items to aid in their alleged illegal activities.
A Bronx drug paraphernalia lawyer could help you if you are facing these charges. A diligent drug attorney can work to build a strong defense to protect your rights throughout the legal process.
What is Drug Paraphernalia?
Unlike many other states, the New York Penal Laws do not automatically punish the possession of items that help people consume drugs. Certain exceptions under public health law protect drug users in these scenarios. Instead, the law is focused on preventing the distribution of drugs in The Bronx.
While it is illegal to distribute controlled substances, it is also illegal to possess items that may aid in this distribution, even if these items are not per se illegal. Under New York Penal Law §220.50, it is unlawful to possess anything that may help in the distribution of those drugs.
These items can include:
- Chemical substances used to mix, dilute, or otherwise prepare drugs for packaging
- Gelatin capsules, vials, or envelopes used to package the drugs
- Scales or other measuring tools used to weigh drugs
Any person caught in possession of these items may face a class A misdemeanor charge. Penalties here can rise to as much as one year in jail. A Bronx drug paraphernalia lawyer could help a person better understand the charges they are facing.
Connections Between Paraphernalia and Distribution Charges
It is rare for someone to face drug paraphernalia charges as a stand-alone crime. This is because of the inference that prosecutors must draw to charge a person under the law. The statute states that a prosecutor must prove that a defendant held these items with the intent to use them to distribute drugs. As a result, none of the items on the above list are per se illegal. For this reason, drug paraphernalia charges typically accompany drug distribution charges.
Prosecutors must be able to connect drug paraphernalia to other illegal drug behavior. Even if the items seized in a police search do not contain any drug residue, prosecutors may ask a jury to infer their use to package drugs by introducing evidence of customer lists, large amounts of cash, or witness statements to connect that property to drug activity. A Bronx drug paraphernalia lawyer could help fight back against these alleged connections.
A Bronx Drug Paraphernalia Attorney Can Be an Ally
The state’s drug paraphernalia laws prohibit individuals from possessing packaging materials, drug mixers, and even scales if police believe that those items are used to aid the drug trade. The resulting charge of criminally using drug paraphernalia can, therefore, justify an arrest even if no drugs are present on the scene.
A Bronx drug paraphernalia lawyer could help you if you are facing these charges. They can fight on your behalf to refute the idea that any of the items taken by police were used to further drug activity. Contact a lawyer today for help.