With our Chicago drug crime lawyers on your side, you can be assured they'll do everything in their power to fight against your drug charges to get them reduced or dismissed. Our criminal defense attorneys understand your future is at stake and the severe consequences a conviction for a drug crime can have on your future. At Ktenas Law, our criminal defense team has successfully argued a variety of criminal drug charges, including:
Possession of cocaine
Delivery of a Controlled Substance
Criminal drug conspiracy
Distribution of drugs
Possession of ecstasy
Enhanced Sentencing for Designated Drug-Free Zones
Possession of heroin
Importation of drugs
Manufacturing of drugs
Intent to deliver
Possession with intent to distribute
Possession of controlled substance
Possession of drug paraphernalia
Drug paraphernalia charges
Sale of drugs
Prescription drug fraud
Source of Bail Hearing, and
Transportation of drugs.
If you have been charged with a drug-related offense in Illinois, you must contact an experienced Chicago criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible. Our criminal defense attorneys have decades of experience representing drug offenders on a wide variety of criminal matters, such as drug possession and distribution.
After an initial review of your case, our defense team will counsel you on your rights as a defendant, explain the nature of the charges you're facing, assist you with exploring your legal options, including negotiating for a favorable plea bargain or proceeding to trial, and help you fight to get drug charges dismissed. For a free initial consultation, contact our criminal defense law firm today at (312) 756-8652 or chat with us online to learn how we can help.
How Do Drug Charges Get Dismissed?
Defending a person charged with possession of a controlled substance is a daunting task, but not impossible. For instance, one way to get common drug offenses dismissed is to take advantage of overworked public employees. Prosecutors handle hundreds of drug-related cases per month, and drug possession offenses are typically a low priority for many prosecutors. Thus, if you and your attorney can handle the case with the intensity of a first-degree murder charge by creating multiple depositions, document requests, and other procedural paperwork, you might wear down the prosecutor, eventually forcing him or her to either drop the drug charges against you or offer a lesser sentence as part of a plea agreement.
In most jurisdictions, if the prosecution doesn't provide sufficient evidence during discovery, you can seek dismissal of the drug charges as a sanction against the state. However, it's essential to note that this tactic can backfire, causing the prosecution to take a personal interest in your case because of the headaches you have caused.
Also, some jurisdictions offer a diversionary program, which allows drug offenders caught with small amounts of drugs to pay fines and court costs, go to rehabilitation, and after successful completion of all obligations, the drug charges are dropped, and there's no drug conviction recorded against the person's record. However, these diversion programs require a legitimate effort by the defendant to remain clean and off drugs. Not doing so can result in all the original criminal penalties and the probability of paying for the failed drug treatment plan.
If you wish to fight the drug charges levied against you on the merits, the best way to do this is by challenging the means by which the evidence was obtained. First, you'll need to prove that the police officer had no probable cause to stop you. Further, you must prove that even if the traffic stop was legal, the subsequent search that led to the discovery of the drugs is illegal, especially if the law enforcement officer lacked probable cause to search you or a valid search warrant. Typically, this is where the drug case will have the most weaknesses.
Often, police officers “ask” to search in a way that implies no choice. Allowing a police officer to search you or your vehicle or home will allow whatever he or she finds to come into evidence against you. Thus, if there's any way to say no to the search without being arrested for resisting arrest or obstruction, do so. It's your constitutional right. If the law enforcement officer still searches without a valid warrant or probable cause after you have told him or her no, the evidence he or she gathers is inadmissible in court.
Proof the Drugs are Yours
Further, many drug cases suffer from weaknesses in proving “constructive possession.” This is where something is said to be in your possession because of the circumstances, even though it might not be yours. For instance, if you borrow a friend's vehicle to go to the restaurant and, after being pulled over for speeding, the police officer comes up with a reason to search and discovers a small amount of cocaine in the center console. Do those drugs belong to you or the owner of the car? This creates doubts on proof of possession beyond a reasonable doubt that you can exploit to your advantage.
Disproving Chemical Tests
Another weakness is proving that a substance is actually a drug. Because if you have a bottle of spices for your cooking class and not marijuana, this is a significant mistake. Thus, it's essential to challenge any lab reports proving the evidence is a controlled substance. Objecting to the identity of the substance will leave that matter at issue for trial requiring the prosecution to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the substance is an illegal drug.
Again, this will create additional headaches for the overworked prosecutor. Also, it'll create additional time and expense. For the prosecutor to prove that the substance is a controlled substance, he or she will need to call the lab technician to testify at trial, which is expensive. Further, criminal trial dates change constantly, which may a potential administrative nightmare to schedule and reschedule the lab technician's days off to show up in court, especially if the lab technician had to testify in every drug possession case on the court's docket.
If you or a loved one has been charged with drug possession, take it seriously because drug charges can result in severe criminal charges. Although most people consider drug possession as a “minor crime,” it can have serious consequences, including lengthy probation periods, drug screens, hefty fines, administrative costs, and even jail time. Thus, if you're facing drug charges, contact a criminal defense attorney as soon as possible for legal help with these types of cases, even if the criminal charges seem relatively minor. Not consulting an experienced attorney can have dire consequences, which a skilled defense drug expert can help you easily avoid.
Can a Simple Possession Charge be Dropped?
If you're facing a drug possession charge in Illinois, perhaps you already know that you may face severe criminal penalties that could result in cause jail time. Illinois drug laws are strict, and often judges aren't sympathetic.
In Illinois, possession of cocaine, heroin, morphine, or LSD is illegal. As the amount of drugs increases, so does the severity of the offense and the potential jail sentence. Except for the possession of the smallest amount of drugs, all drug charges are Class 1 Felonies in Illinois. However, the Illinois criminal statute lays out its own sentencing guidelines. Under the statute, it's illegal for any person to possess narcotics without a prescription.
The best option to beat a simple possession charge is to beat the case in court and get a not guilty or a dismissal verdict if the case goes to trial.
During a dismissal, you have a good argument for a motion to suppress the evidence against you, based on an illegal search. Police officers often make mistakes and regularly violate Constitutional rights. Our experienced Chicago criminal defense attorneys will look for every reason to file the motion to suppress the evidence against you and get the charges levied against you dropped.
Contact Our Experienced Criminal Defense Lawyers Today for Legal Advice!
Do you want to know more about how to get an illegal possession charge dismissed? Beating a drug possession charge is a daunting task. The best way to know about every defense that may apply to your case is to contact a skilled criminal defense attorney.
The experienced Chicago drug defense attorneys at Ktenas Law will use the defenses mentioned above and more to reduce criminal penalties or eliminate the drug charges against you altogether. To schedule a free initial consultation, contact our Orland Park law office today at (312) 756-8652, or chat with us online to learn how we can help.