Since the legalization of adult recreational marijuana use in the state of California, there has been a lot of uncertainty about what is legal and what isn't. For many people, their interpretation of what they want to be able to do under the law is far more liberal than what the law allows.
As discussed in last week's post, the federal government aggressively seeks out those they believe have been trafficking narcotics. The DEA conducts intense and thorough investigations, which often lead to the seizure of drugs and the arrest of individuals. Federal drug trafficking charges are quite serious, and failing to adequately defend against them could cause you to face significant penalties that might be difficult to recover from.
The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) investigates numerous federal drug crimes, often spending months, even years tracking alleged drug traffickers. Once they believe they have gathered enough evidence, federal agents move in and make arrests. In fact, in 2013, the DEA made more than 30,600 arrests. Though that number is slightly less than previous years, it is still a significant number, meaning that, each year, thousands of individuals find themselves facing federal charges.
Two Fresno men were recently taken into custody for alleged federal drug crimes. According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the two men conspired to sell methamphetamine to confidential sources at a price of $1,000 per pound. Authorities allege a purchase was arranged and, when the accused individuals arrived with five pounds of methamphetamine, they were arrested. The men now face federal charges for conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine and possession with the intent to distribute.
Many Californians are aware of synthetic drugs known as "spice" or "bath salts." These drugs often include illegal chemicals which some claim are excessively dangerous, even deadly. For this reason, authorities aggressively pursue individuals who manufacture and distribute synthetic drugs. Those who find themselves butting heads with the police and federal agents may find themselves facing serious drug trafficking crimes, which can completely change an individual's life for the worse.
A raid in Sacramento conducted by the Stanislaus Drug Enforcement Agency and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration netted five individuals who authorities claim were trafficking narcotics. The arrests came after authorities received a tip that drugs were being sold out of a transmission business. After obtaining warrants, authorities raided the premises, arrested the five accused individuals, and allegedly seized two pounds of methamphetamine as well as marijuana and cocaine. The men accused in the case now face charges related to cocaine distribution, methamphetamine distribution, and conspiracy.
With more and more states from California to Michigan legalizing marijuana for recreational and medicinal purposes federal authorities are keeping a close watch for illegal trafficking operations. While the decreased stigma in some areas may give people a sense that marijuana is no longer aggressively prosecuted, this is not necessarily the case. In fact, federal drug trafficking crimes as well as other state and federal drug offenses that involve marijuana, can still land a person behind bars for a very long time.
While there may be subtle shifts taking place in public perception concerning the war on drugs, authorities continue to aggressively target people for state and federal drug crimes. And, in California, while the scope of state and federal drug offenses is broad, federal authorities are putting a lot of resources into federal drug trafficking operations. California residents may have heard about a recent drug bust that caught quite a bit of media attention.
Drug trafficking or distribution refers to the sale, transportation and importation of illegal substances such as marijuana, methamphetamine and other unlawful controlled substances. While the penalties for federal drug offenses range dramatically, individuals convicted of drug offenses are likely to face stiff fines and prison. It is also important to note that both federal and state laws are implicated in most drug trafficking cases.
A federal grand jury recently returned drug distribution indictments for a couple and the couple's adult son. The investigation into the couple allegedly revealed that marijuana was grown in California and then transported to another state where it was sold. Each of the three was charged with one count of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute marijuana and with one count of aiding and abetting possession with intent to distribute marijuana.