Rockland County Drug Distribution Lawyer
Some of the most serious drug-related charges that you may face in Rockland County involve the suspected distribution of drugs. Any allegation of distribution is a felony, and the most serious charges carry the heaviest available penalties under state law.
A Rockland County drug distribution lawyer could help you to present a powerful defense in court against allegations of drug distribution. A well-versed drug lawyer can help you from day one to argue for fair bail terms, make motions to exclude illegal evidence, and present defenses to juries designed to create reasonable doubt.
Laws Concerning Illegal Drug Distribution
All charges involving illegal drug distribution in Rockland County are serious. According to New York Penal Law §220.31, it is a Class D felony for any person to sell a controlled substance. This is a generalized statute that punishes any alleged sale of a controlled substance without the legal authority to do so.
The State publishes an extensive list of substances classified as “controlled.” In general, these include narcotics, prescription medications, and non-narcotic street drugs. A drug’s classification is an essential element in many drug distribution cases because a drug’s classification can bring enhanced charges of distribution. For example, the sale of any narcotic drug is a Class B felony under New York Penal Law §220.39. This means that a conviction carries a required minimum prison sentence of one year with the maximum sentence rising as high as 25 years.
The other aggravating factor in drug distribution cases is the amount of the controlled substance involved in the case. A person can face extremely harsh charges involving drug distribution for even non-narcotic drugs if they are accused of selling a large amount of those substances. A Rockland County drug distribution lawyer could help a person understand the State’s drug laws and how they affect their case.
What does it Mean to Distribute a Drug in Rockland County?
New York’s Penal Law does not use the term distribute in its statutes. Instead, these statutes make it illegal to sell a controlled substance. Most people understand the term sell to mean exchange an item for cash. Under this definition, it is reasonable to argue that someone did not violate the law because they simply gave drugs to another person for free.
However, this defense does not work. New York Penal Law §220.00 defines a sale as, “…to sell, exchange, give or dispose of to another, or to offer or agree to do the same.” As a result, a prosecutor may charge someone with a crime if they distribute a drug to another person, whether for profit or not.
Additionally, it is also illegal to attempt to commit any crime. Therefore, if police arrest someone before a controlled buy, they cannot argue that an exchange never actually took place. It is enough for a prosecutor to prove that a person intended to make the exchange. A Rockland County drug distribution lawyer could explain how the concepts of sale and distribution contribute to a prosecutor’s case.
What Drugs are Usually Involved in Distribution Cases?
Drug distribution charges could involve the transportation or sale of any controlled substance. The same substances outlawed by state and federal law that could result in a possession charge could also lead to a distribution case depending on the circumstances. Some of the substances that often lead to distribution charges include:
- Crack cocaine
In addition to these narcotics, a distribution charge could also relate to the unlawful possession of prescription medication. In fact, many of these offenses involve the distribution of opioids or other painkillers.
What are the Defenses to Drug Distribution Charges?
There are numerous potential defenses to a drug distribution charge. In some cases, these charges are based on little more than the possession of a controlled substance. This means a prescription or some other form of authorization could be viable defense.
Other defenses involve criminal intent. For example, a person that is unaware they are transporting or otherwise in the possession of a controlled substance could claim they lacked the intent necessary for a conviction.
As with many drug charges, constitution grounds also provide a potent defense in many distribution cases. Any evidence collected by the police through an unlawful search or seizure could result in its exclusion at trial. This could include all of the controlled substances seized by the police during an unlawful search. It could even include an admission of guilt following an illegal traffic stop. A skilled lawyer in Rockland County could review a drug distribution case and determine what defense strategy may be effective.
A Rockland County Drug Distribution Attorney Could Help
Any conviction for a drug distribution charge is a felony. Making matters worse, many of these convictions carry mandatory minimum prison sentences. A Rockland County drug distribution lawyer could help you work towards the best possible outcome. They can work to examine the strength of the prosecutor’s case, challenge the admissibility of evidence, and protect your rights during every stage of your case. Call today for a consultation.