Federal penalties for a cocaine trafficking conviction are very serious. Their severity ultimately depends on two factors: 1) how much cocaine federal authorities convicted you of trafficking; and 2) how many times you have been convicted of drug offenses. Let's take a look at the various penalties associated with cocaine trafficking below.
As was evidenced by the case that was discussed in last week's blog post, federal authorities are still aggressively pursuing Californians they believe are involved in drug trafficking and related offenses. The government typically spends months, sometimes, even years investigating individuals to gather evidence. This means that those who are accused of drug crimes are often up against relatively strong legal arguments and supporting evidence.
Most federal offenses carry significant penalties upon conviction. Amongst those offenses are those involving drugs. With the war on drugs seeming to rage on, federal prosecutors still take a hard line on those Californians they believe are breaking the law. This means that those who are accused of these crimes could be up against aggressive prosecutors and tough legal arguments. In these situations, it is critical to develop as strong of a California criminal defense as is possible under the circumstances. Failing to do so could lead to the imposition of tough penalties.
There are many pieces to a criminal case. There are procedural matters, physical evidence, and witness testimony that all must be addressed, and failing to do so properly could result in undesired consequences. However, when it comes to witnesses, a criminal defendant must be very careful, as certain actions towards those individuals could result in additional criminal charges that can carry significant penalties.
Our last blog post discussed how the government illegally tapped phones, which led to the arrests of many people. This is a serious matter, as illegally obtained evidence does not only affect the individuals in this particular case but many others throughout California as well. Some defendants facing federal drug charges may fail to realize that the law is full of rules. Not just ones that say individuals should not commit crimes, but also about how the criminal justice system must play out. Any violation of those rules could lead to a major turning point in a case for either the prosecution or the defense.
In order for federal prosecutors to obtain a criminal conviction, they must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. They may try to achieve this in a number of ways: calling witnesses, cross-examining the defense's witnesses, and introducing evidence. However, there are strict rules that apply to physical evidence and witness testimony, which are put in place to protect Americans from unfair treatment under the law. When those rules are broken, individuals can wind up facing criminal charges that they should not.
When Californians hear about major drug busts, they may think of hard drugs like cocaine or heroin. While there are still plenty of arrests involving these drugs, law enforcement has expanded its focus to include lesser drugs, such as synthetic marijuana. Yet, the potential for penalties and long-term consequences are just as real. Therefore, those accused of criminal wrongdoing involving synthetic drugs may want to consider putting forth the best criminal defense they can.
It does not take a genius to know that the Internet has changed California. It has reshaped our economy, society's breadth and depth of knowledge and the way we entertain ourselves. Yet, as we have discussed in the previous weeks here on the blog, it has also opened up a whole new avenue through which Californians can face criminal charges. Amongst those crimes Californians could face is drug trafficking.
Last week's blog post discussed the limitations that are placed on search warrants when they are granted to law enforcement. This information is critical, as those who have been arrested and whose prosecution relies on evidence seized during that search may be able to use these limitation to bolster their defense. Doing so could allow an accused individual to avoid strict, life-altering penalties, and allow him or her to get back to his or her normal life with as little damage done as possible.
When prosecutors seek to charge an individual with a crime, whether for murder, burglary, or drug trafficking, they must base their allegations on some sort of evidence. Evidence is the foundation of a criminal case, and is often the pivotal information that could cause an individual to be slapped with harsh penalties like prison and harsh fines. Therefore, it is important for those under investigation and those facing criminal charges to understand evidence, how it can be collected, and when it may be inadmissible against them.