Drug Trafficking Attorney

If you’re convicted of drug trafficking in California, it’s usually considered a felony crime and with that will come possible prison time. Get the experienced legal representation your case requires. Contact The Law Office of Elliott Kanter today.

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Drug Trafficking Defense Attorney San Diego

Drug trafficking is a big deal. Over the past 20 years, the public has clamored for tougher laws against the manufacturing and selling of drugs. Now, if you are caught, the penalties can be very high – it’s a felony. If this happens, the best thing you can do is call an experienced San Diego drug trafficking attorney with The Law Office of Elliott Kanter. We can help you fight the charges and get you into an effective narcotic treatment program if necessary. Drug trafficking is defined as the manufacture, transport, and distribution of large amounts of drugs, including marijuana, cocaine, heroin, and other narcotics. Often, more than one person is involved. Drug trafficking charges can vary depending on the scope and scale of the operation. And if sales activity is targeted towards minors, the penalties can be even stiffer.

Drug Trafficking in California

The California Health and Safety Code Section (CHSC) 11352 defines the crime of drug trafficking as any:

“person who transports, imports into this state, sells, furnishes, administers, or gives away, or offers to transport, import into this state, sell, furnish, administer, or give away, or attempts to import into this state or transport any controlled substance”

Is Drug Trafficking a Felony or Misdemeanor in San Diego?

Transporting and selling drugs is a felony crime in California, and you can also face criminal charges if you aid, abet, or conspire with anyone to commit drug trafficking. The only drug trafficking charge that may be a misdemeanor is if you are trafficking marijuana and you have less than 28.5 grams (one ounce) in your possession. This marijuana must also be for your own personal use and not for sale to others.

What Are the Laws for Drug Trafficking in California?

Under California drug laws, importing, manufacturing, transporting, selling, or possessing controlled substances is illegal. If you are involved in transporting and selling drugs, you can be charged with drug trafficking. These offenses are taken seriously in California and carry severe penalties.

Possession of illegal drugs such as heroin or cocaine and controlled substances in large amounts can lead to a felony conviction in California. Felony charges are serious and can result in heavy fines and possible jail time.

Possession of low-level drugs is considered a misdemeanor crime. Although a misdemeanor has lesser charges, it can negatively impact your life. Long-term consequences for this crime could include limitations on your ability to retain your current job or get a new one, rent an apartment, or obtain financial aid for college. In California, various laws apply to drug trafficking:

  • Possession of methamphetamines for sale: Health & Safety Code 11351
  • Transportation or sale of illegal drugs (cocaine, opiates, heroin, LSD, and some prescription drugs like oxycodone and hydrocodone): Health & Safety Code 11352
  • Transportation or sale of methamphetamines: Health & Safety Code 11379
  • Transportation or sale of Marijuana: Health & Safety Code 11360

If you have been charged with selling, possessing, or transporting an illegal substance in California, contact a San Diego drug trafficking attorney immediately.

What are the Penalties for Drug Trafficking?

A number of factors will be considered during sentencing for a drug crime. The penalties you face for a drug trafficking conviction will vary depending on what type of drug you were caught with and where the trafficking occurred. For example, if you were convicted of drug trafficking on school grounds, you will face much more severe penalties than you would for drug trafficking to people in other places. The penalties may also increase if a minor was involved in the operation or if it is not your first offense.

The punishments for drug trafficking are usually between three to nine years in prison and steep fines. Even worse, sometimes drug trafficking can mean federal charges. Federal authorities tend to get involved with drug trafficking investigations when:

  • The defendant is suspected of trafficking a large amount of drugs
  • The defendant is accused of trafficking drugs across the state and/or national borders
  • The defendant is believed to have trafficked in HIDTA, which are high-intensity drug trafficking areas. These areas are known to have high volumes of drug crimes, so they are under intense surveillance by federal authorities.

Federal penalties tend to be much more severe than the ones you would face in the California court system. If you have been accused of drug trafficking, don’t wait to contact an attorney. You will need an experienced attorney to defend your rights and fight to achieve the best possible outcome for your case. Call The Law Office of Elliott Kanter or visit our website to fill out an online form and schedule your free legal consultation today.

What is Considered Constructive Possession?

Part of proving a drug trafficking crime is showing the defendant was in possession of drugs. But, it’s important to note the defendant does not need to be in actual possession of the drug in order to prove this crime. How is this possible? The law distinguishes between actual and constructive possession. Actual possession means you are holding the item in your hand or could easily have access to it if needed. For example, if you have something in your pocket or handbag, this is considered to be in your actual possession. However, constructive possession means you do not have immediate access to it, but you do have control over it or the right to control it. For example, if you have something in the glove compartment of your car, but you are not in your car, you still have constructive possession over the item because it is stored safely inside property that belongs to you.

In relation to drug trafficking, it means the police do not have to find you in actual possession of the drugs in order to arrest you for drug trafficking–just constructive possession.

Will Having a Valid Prescription Help Me?

Yes, having a valid prescription or doctor's note for the drugs you have could be used as a defense against drug trafficking charges. However, several factors are going to be considered, including:

  • The drugs in your possession are in a prescription bottle labeled with your name.
  • The amount of supply you have.
  • Whether you were in the process of transporting or selling to other people.
  • If you were pulled over for a regular traffic check and the police charged you with carrying drugs for sale.
  • Whether you have records of drug sales or a scale to weigh the drugs.

How Our Law Firm Can Make A Difference In Your Case

The Law Office of Elliott Kanter can make a difference in your case. We have experience in California drug crime law, so we now look to for common errors in the prosecution’s case, some of which may include:

  • Violation of entrapment laws
  • Use of questionable or unreliable informants
  • Illegal tactics to get a search warrant
  • Base charges on circumstantial evidence

Is Not Knowing I’m In Possession of Drugs a Plausible Defense?

At The Law Office of Elliott Kanter, we have dealt with many cases where individuals claim that they did not know about the drugs in their possession. In such cases, your defense will depend on your claim's circumstances.

For example, if you own a car, you are expected to know what is stored in it. But if you rented the vehicle and have only used it for an hour or less before being stopped, and there were illegal substances in it, you might have a plausible defense.

The best thing to do if illegal drugs are found in your car, and you did not know you had them, is to consult a drug trafficking attorney. Call our office at (619) 231-1883 to schedule a free consultation and discuss your case details with our lead attorney, Elliott Kanter.

Seeking Representation for your Drug Trafficking Charges

If you’re convicted of drug trafficking, it’s usually considered a felony crime and with that will come possible prison time. Law enforcement officials and prosecutors are concerned more with convictions and jail sentences and less with your rights. The Law Office of Elliott Kanter will work to protect your rights. We may be able to negotiate with the prosecutor to have your charges reduced or dismissed. Our lawyers may be able to weaken the prosecution’s case by getting evidence dismissed. Or, if you willingly submit to a narcotic education or rehabilitation program, a criminal defense lawyer might be able to get your charges reduced. If we do have to go to court, we can present a compelling case on your behalf.

Our attorneys have over 40 years of experience defending clients in criminal cases. Our law firm’s criminal practice areas include assault and battery, theft crimes, drug crimes, drug possession, probation violations, fraud, domestic violence, white-collar crimes, sex crimes, elder abuse, juvenile offenses, and DUI.

What do you do if you’re charged with drug trafficking in San Diego? There’s so much at stake when you are charged with a drug offense. So don’t hesitate to contact aggressive attorney Elliott Kanter by phone or by email at ekanter@enkanter.com for a no-cost, no-obligation consultation today. Come into our law firm after an arrest, tell us your side of the story, and we’ll give you the legal advice you need to protect your future. Together, we’ll get started.

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Contact us today to schedule a consultation with one of our attorneys.

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