Proving New York City Drug Conspiracy Charges
Proving New York drug conspiracy charges is not an easy task. There are many elements that a prosecutor must establish, and they must have a solid command of facts and evidence to do so. That means that prosecutors can be aggressive in their prosecution of drug conspiracy charges, which is why you need an equally vigilant defense. If you have been charged with drug conspiracy charges, get in touch with an experienced drug conspiracy lawyer who can work diligently to build your defense.
Elements in a Drug Conspiracy Case
When proving New York drug conspiracy charges, New York prosecutors must prove that the person took part in the conspiracy. They must establish that there was an agreement between two or more individuals to work towards the common goal of engaging in narcotic sales. They must prove that the person committed at least one overt act in furtherance of the conspiracy.
The overt act can be anything that advances the goals of the organization. It does not necessarily need to be narcotics-related or even illegal.
However, the prosecutor is required to show that the overall goal of the conspiracy is to conduct narcotics transactions, and they must have evidence to prove that. Once the establishment of a drug conspiracy is made, participation in that conspiracy holds the actor liable for the behavior of the other drug conspirators.
How Drug Conspiracy Investigations Work
Drug conspiracy investigations begin on a ground level. The police believe the drugs are being sold out of certain locations or by certain individuals and believe they can prove this through community complaints or confidential informants.
They may make a determination whether they are going to raid the location or arrest the individuals immediately. If they believe that a larger organization is at work, they can open an investigation. They conduct surveillance and attempt to make controlled purchases of narcotics.
Role of the Prosecutor
Once the initial stages of the investigation are done, the findings are brought to a prosecutor’s office and the prosecutor gets involved in the investigation. The prosecutor decides whether to issue grand jury subpoenas. Requests for electronic surveillance can be made. The prosecutor decides which charges to file.
In addition, they can start approaching lower-level people in the organization to try to get them to cooperate or they can simply arrest those people and put pressure on them to get them to cooperate. It is hugely important in these types of cases to get cooperating witnesses to assist in proving New York drug conspiracy charges against the higher ups involved in the case.
Evidence of Intent in Drug Conspiracy Cases
To prove that an individual is a member of a drug conspiracy, the prosecutor must establish that the person knowingly committed an overt act in furtherance of the goals of the drug conspiracy. If an individual provides access to a location for the purpose of selling drugs, that is considered an act that demonstrates intent to further the aims of the conspiracy.
Opening a bank account with knowledge that the account is to be used to hold drug proceeds can also be used to show intent when proving New York drug conspiracy charges. Committing acts of violence against a rival drug-dealing organization can be argued to demonstrate the intent to further the drug conspiracy as well.
What to Look For When Hiring a Lawyer
Looking for a lawyer to defend drug conspiracy charges can be different from looking for an attorney to defend general criminal charges. When looking for a lawyer to defend against drug conspiracy charges, you should feel comfortable that their attorney understands the specific elements of conspiracy and narcotics-related charges.
Rather than retaining an attorney who advertises that they only handle narcotics cases, you should look for an attorney with overall success in all areas of criminal defense. You need an attorney that can be flexible and creative when dealing with every type of case. If you have been charged with drug conspiracy, contact an attorney that can defend you against vigilant prosecutors bent on proving New York drug conspiracy charges.