Drug Trafficking in Laws in Las Vegas – Drug Trafficking Lawyer Ross C. Goodman, Esq.
Drug trafficking is one of the worst crimes in Las Vegas, Nevada. A person convicted of drug trafficking will receive severe penalties which include lengthy imprisonment and hefty fines.
Below is some information on drug trafficking, its legal definition, the possible defenses, and implications on the life of the convicted.
What is Drug Trafficking?
According to the Nevada Drug Trafficking Laws (NRS 453), drug trafficking occurs when a person intentionally sells, manufactures, delivers or brings illegal drugs into the State of Nevada. It also occurs when a person is in the possession of large quantities of schedule I or II narcotics (drugs). Basically, drug trafficking is
- Selling illegal drugs in Las Vegas and other cities of Nevada
- Possessing a huge amount of illegal drugs in Las Vegas
- Manufacturing illegal drugs in Las Vegas
- Transporting illegal drugs in Las Vegas
Special laws apply trafficking scheduled I controlled substances such as flunitrazepam, gamma-hydroxybutyrate and more. The same goes for marijuana.
Las Vegas, Nevada Drug Schedule and Penalties
The penalties for violation of drug laws in Las Vegas are based on the type of drug being trafficked. The state of Nevada has released a schedule as a reference so that people are aware of what drugs fall into different each category.
The penalties for drug trafficking are included in the drug schedule. To make it easier for you, here are the most common drugs in Las Vegas and their respective schedules.
Schedule I Drugs:
Schedule II Drugs:
What are the Possible Defenses for Drug Trafficking Charges?
Regardless of the severity of drug trafficking charges, there are still legal defenses that could possibly get the case reduced to a lesser offense or even have the case dismissed. Below are sample scenarios:
Law enforcers did an unlawful search
If the search is done without a valid search warrant as per the 4th Amendment, the search is deemed illegal. Whatever may have been found from the search can be considered as inadmissible evidence and would not stand in court.
The accused can file a motion to suppress evidence. The defense counsel will submit a request to throw out the pieces of evidence from the unlawful search. Included in the motion is an in-depth explanation of how the police unconstitutionally carried out the search.
Once the motion to suppress has been granted, the major evidence for the case would be excluded and it is likely that the drug trafficking charge would be dismissed. The prosecutor would have to prove your guilt beyond a reasonable doubt without this major evidence.
The illegal drugs did not weigh enough
The drug trafficking law states that the controlled substance has to meet the weight requirement, which is 4 grams for Schedule I drugs and 28 grams for Schedule II. If the weight of illegal drugs found on the accused’s possession does not meet these weight requirements, the defense counsel can argue that the accused has no intention of drug trafficking. The case may be reduced to drug possession.
How to Avoid Prison for Drug Trafficking?
Imprisonment is mandatory for a drug trafficking conviction. The good thing is that the defense can request a reduced prison sentence. There is also a chance that the prison sentence could get early parole if the accused agreed to help the police in their investigation.
The factors that could affect a reducing or suspending a prison sentence are:
- The nature and extent of the defendant’s assistance;
- The court’s evaluation of the significance and usefulness of the defendant’s assistance;
- The timeline of the defendant’s assistance;
- The truthfulness, reliability, and completeness of any information or testimony provided by the defendant; and
- Any danger or injury suffered, or risk of injury to the convicted person or their families resulting from their assistance.
Drug trafficking has the harshest penalties in drug crimes, that is why the help of a Drug Trafficking Lawyer is vital. The prosecutors could reduce the charges depending on the circumstances:
- Drug possession: Considered as the least of all drug crimes, the defendant could even have a chance to get the case dismissed altogether.
- Drug possession with intent to sell: This charge is less serious compared to drug trafficking with lower prison terms and fines; first-time offenders have a possibility of sentence probation.
- Selling controlled substances: Compared to drug trafficking, selling controlled substances has lesser prison sentences and lower fines. First-time offenders could even result in sentence probation.
Plea Bargain for Drug Trafficking Charge
A plea bargain is one of the surefire ways to reduce imprisonment for drug trafficking charges. This is often used as the last line of defense. The prosecution would offer a greatly reduced imprisonment time in exchange for the pleading guilty of the crime. Here are some cases we can use examples:
Darlene Eckles is living with his drug-dealing brother. She knew of her brother’s drug dealing business and still allowed him to operate in her house. She got arrested and charged with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute. The prosecutors offered a 10-year sentence in exchange for her plea. She did not accept the plea bargain and is now serving a 20-year sentence.
The Roy Lee Clay Case:
Roy Lee Clay was the leader of a heroin distribution ring in Baltimore. He was charged for conspiracy to distribute heroin with intent. He rejected the plea bargain for 10-year imprisonment and is now serving life imprisonment.
Weldon Angelos was a 24-year old father of two in Salt Lake City. He is an aspiring producer who sells marijuana as a sideline. He was caught by the FBI and charged with marijuana distribution and gun possession. The prosecution offered 15-year imprisonment in exchange for a plea, which he didn’t accept. He was sentenced for 55 years in prison, with no parole.â€
Hire the go-to Drug Trafficking Lawyer for Drug Charges
A drug trafficking charge is a life-changing experience. It has terrible consequences, such as ending up spending the rest of your life in prison, get most of your properties confiscated, and losing a lot of money in the process.
Hire one of the best drug trafficking lawyers in Las Vegas, Nevada to defend you. Schedule for a case consultation now!