Top Houston Criminal Lawyers
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Drug offenses may be charged against a single individual with just a minimal quantity of marijuana, or perhaps a college student selling ecstasy or an individual trafficking considerable amounts of crack across state lines. Because drug violations cover an extremely wide array of criminal acts, almost no one can avoid the possibility of being found guilty, regardless if they are an upstanding citizen or possibly a career criminal. Anyone that has been charged with a crime should certainly consult the advice and the representation of the Top Houston Criminal Lawyers at the Charles Johnson Law Firm to help understand the nature of the charge, what defenses are available for the crime, if plea bargains are available, and what could happen if the defendant is convicted of the crime.
Drug offenses range in severity with the possession of a small quantity of marijuana for individual use being a “lesser” drug crime, and operating an entire drug trafficking business being a significantly greater criminal offense. The violations may be tried as a misdemeanor or a felony, based on a number of elements. For instance, the type of drug, quantity and motive are all considered when making an arrest. The prosecution and the judge may also consider whether or not the suspect has a past criminal history, and they’ll examine the circumstances associated with the criminal case. Competent Houston Criminal Lawyers can help you fight for your legal rights and ensure that the more positive aspects of the scenario don’t get go unnoticed by the prosecution. These strategies will help make sure that you aren’t sentenced with more severe consequences than necessary. Drug offenses are taken extremely seriously within the state of Texas and a skilled defense attorney might be the difference between your liberty and a felony conviction.
According to the elements of one’s case, you might discover your self dealing with a jail sentence. More serious cases of sales or sizable amounts of drug possession could put you behind bars. An experienced drug violations attorney can keep you from contending with prison time. Drug offenses fall within the jurisdiction of both federal and state laws, based on the nature of the criminal offense. Smuggling illegal substances and substantial quantity narcotic conspiracy cases are usually prosecuted on the federal level. Some other drug violations, like possession, manufacture and illegal drug trafficking inside state boundaries, are generally prosecuted by the State of Texas. Drug violations criminal charges consist of possession, use, sale or furnishing of any type of unlawful drug or drug paraphernalia that’s prohibited by law, also as the illegal possession of legal drugs (like prescribed pharmaceutical misuse).
Drug offenses in Texas are taken extremely seriously by federal and state prosecutors. When you have been arrested for simple marijuana possession, you could confront elevated criminal charges if you’re caught in possession of 4 oz . or more. If you’re found guilty of violating the Texas Controlled Substance Act, you might lose the privilege of your driver’s license for as much as 6 months. Drug violations are extremely severe in nature and must by no means be taken casually. An individual who’s arrested for a drug offense deals with life-changing legal repercussions. In Texas, drug offenses are prosecuted harshly by law enforcement officials and District Attorneys. Because of a continual growth in drug associated violations, the federal and state government now utilize more rigid drug regulations and legal punishments.
Drug violations may be considered as infractions, misdemeanors, or felonies based on a host of elements which includes:
What types of controlled substances had been involved (for example, heroin and PCP are usually seen as much more “serious” illegal drugs than marijuana).
The quantity of drugs concerned.
Whether or not the drugs had been procured for private use exclusively or to sell to other individuals.
Whether or not the accused was concurrently concerned within the commission of various other felonies or misdemeanors.
The defendant’s prior criminal history, if any exists.
Drug violations consist of numerous activities forbidden by federal or state statute, which includes possession, sale, manufacture, distribution and trafficking, together with prescription fraud and forgery. Drug offenses consist of attempts and conspiracies to commit any type of of these acts. On the federal level, involvement in a continuing criminal enterprise additionally exposes a person to criminal accountability. These offenses are extremely precisely defined, and therefore the government is expected to prove to the court a particular set of facts before a charged individual may be declared guilty of them.
Hire the Top Houston Criminal Lawyers: The Charles Johnson Law Firm
Additionally, drug cases often involve the issue of whether or not the proof was correctly attained by the authorities. Evidence acquired in violation of an defendant’s constitutional legal rights isn’t admissible in the courtroom. The majority of challenges to the admissibility of evidence are dependent within the Fourth Amendment, that protects Americans from unreasonable searches and seizures.
Drug courts currently operate or are being structured in virtually all 50 states. Although they differ among states, these specialized courts focus on therapy more than time in jail for defendants with substance abuse problems. Compliance with all the enforced stipulations (e.g., frequent drug screening, participation in a rehabilitation program) could possibly lead to dismissal of criminal charges, or suspended or lowered sentences.
When prison time is required, on the other hand, possible penalties escalate based on the type and amount of the drug at issue and also the defendant’s previous criminal history. Particular crimes are sorted into classes and minimum and maximum sentences of these classes are stipulated based on a defendant’s criminal background. Utilization of these sentencing recommendations in state and federal court have long been debatable; proponents maintain that recommendations make sure uniformity and equity in penalties, although opponents debate that they are not able to provide the flexibility required to take into account a defendant’s specific situations.
When you have Been Charged with a Drug Criminal offense
Drug charges can certainly have significant consequences, such as forfeiture of property and assets and time in jail. Talking to Attorney Charles Johnson, one of the Top Houston Criminal Lawyers, for guidance on how you can proceed is important. If you’re fighting drug criminal charges, a knowledgeable lawyer will assist you with navigating through the problems concerned in this complicated area of legislation.
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Marijuana is considered the most commonly abused unlawful drug in the United States. Marijuana is a Schedule I substance under the Controlled Substances Act, classified as having a very high potential for abuse. Street names for marijuana include grass, pot, weed, Mary Jane, dope, indo, and hydro. Marijuana possession laws can certainly impose strict penalties under certain situations. If you or a loved one has been charged with a drug-related offense, it is important to get legal representation from an experienced criminal lawyer immediately. Houston Drug Crime Lawyer Charles Johnson will make prompt efforts on his clients’ behalf to steer law enforcement and prosecutors away from considering serious felony charges, or even any charges, in his client’s cases. Charles Johnson is available 24/7 to answer any questions you may have regarding your case.
Possession of marijuana (sometimes often called simple possession) is regarded as the most common drug crime within the United States. Considered a misdemeanor in a majority of states, marijuana possession penalties include fines, probation, and/or community service. Criminal possession of marijuana is the next level up in marijuana possession offenses and consists of possession of marijuana in a public place where it is either burning or in open public view in quantities in excess of two oz . but less 8 ounces. Criminal possession of marijuana is also a misdemeanor but the penalties increase along with the potential for prison time.
Technically, under federal drug law, the possession of marijuana, in any amount, is punishable by up to twelve months in jail along with a minimum fine of $1,000 for a first conviction. Further convictions and larger amounts lead to much stiffer penalties. Fairly few marijuana possession court cases give rise to a felony level crime. Marijuana distribution, however, is always a felony under federal law. The sale of under 50 kilos of marijuana (the smallest amount category) is punishable by five years in prison along with a $250,000 fine.
Marijuana is commonly consumed in its organic state, the plant itself utilized in various ways to produce a hallucinogenic effect on the user. Abuse and use of the cannabis plant as a means for getting high dates back to biblical times. The advent of laws criminalizing the use of the drug occurred sometime during the 20th century, with fights to legalize the use of marijuana argued ever since, its use among Native Americans in religious ceremonies and the utilization of the drug by cancer patients to alleviate nausea being the most frequent arguments used for its legalization, and a significant change in the marijuana possession laws.
Marijuana production’s principal source is Mexico. Virtually all foreign-produced marijuana available in the United States is smuggled into the country from Mexico over the Mexico border by criminal groups. Mexican criminal groups control most of wholesale marijuana distribution in the U.S., with Asian criminal groups which bring in the product over the Canadian border running a close second. The potency of Canadian marijuana being considered finer quality than the Mexican version has resulted in an increase in Asian control of marijuana production and distribution. According to the National Drug Threat Assessment 2007, high potency Canada-based smuggling, distribution and production groups are increasing, giving rise to large-scale cannabis cultivation in large outdoor sites by both Mexican and Asian groups. Additionally, in an effort to stay competitive in the higher potency marijuana distribution trade, Asian groups have started operating indoor grow sites in homes throughout the Pacific Northwest and California. The trend is to buy or lease a house, modify the house for the objective of producing two to four crops of cannabis and walking away from the property when the crops are harvested.
Challenges to current marijuana production and distribution laws are ongoing, with many states decriminalizing certain marijuana usage for particular medical ailments. Even so , in United States v. Oakland Cannabis Club, the United States Supreme Court ruled that marijuana doesn’t have medical value as determined by Congress. The court’s opinion stated that: “In the case of the Controlled Substances Act, the statue reflects a determination that marijuana doesn’t have any medical benefits worthy of an exception beyond the confines of government-approved research projects.”
In 2002, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit issued a ruling that upheld the Drug Enforcement Act’s determination that marijuana should remain a Schedule I controlled substance, the most restrictive schedule under the Controlled Substance Act. The marijuana debate and court battles will certainly continue to occasionally appear in the United States Court system for years to come.
Defenses for those guilty of breaking marijuana possession laws, and distribution of marijuana laws, usually revolve around the misuse of law enforcement power to search and seize property and assets. Unlawful search and seizure, illegal surveillance, and entrapment are the primary means of defending an arrest of marijuana possession or marijuana distribution.
Houston Marijuana Possession Defense Attorney: Hire the Most Respected Houston Drug Crime Lawyer: The Charles Johnson Law Firm
Texas courts consider marijuana possession charges seriously, and so should you. Multiple convictions of marijuana possession can result in felony charges. Consequently, you want to battle every charge you encounter , not just right away , but to defend your legal rights in the future as well. Considering that possession charges can certainly very easily result in growing and cultivation charges, you want an attorney who will lower virtually all potential damages.
The Top Houston Drug Crime Lawyer Charles Johnson will defend your liberties and fight for you against marijuana possession charges.
The severity of the charges you face is dependent on the quantity of marijuana. Should you are caught with less than two ounces, you will have to deal with minor misdemeanor charges, but the consequences go up steeply from there. Possession of two to four ounces is defined as a Class A Misdemeanor, and possession if over four ounces is recognized as a felony.
No one wants a drug arrest on their permanent record, so our first step is to have the criminal charges completely dismissed. If dismissal or an acquittal at trial is not possible, Houston Drug Crime Lawyer Charles Johnson is going to seek to reduce the criminal charges or diminish the penalties where possible.
For first-time offenders, Attorney Johnson will explore diversionary programs as well. By seeking proper drug treatment, you will likely be able to avoid jail time. He will help you explore virtually all potential alternative sentencing methods.
Juvenile Marijuana Possession
Marijuana has a distinctive odor, and so it is dangerous for minors to smoke it anywhere: in a vehicle, at home, or in a dorm room. Authorities can certainly smell it and a second infraction may lead to serious repercussions, including the loss of student loans. The Best Houston Lawyer will handle juvenile crimes involving marijuana possession as well as criminal court cases.
If you or a loved one have been charged with marijuana possession, you want an expert Houston Drug Crime Lawyer who is willing to stand up for your protection under the law right right now. Get in touch with Attorney Charles Johnson today for a no charge preliminary consultation.
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Depending on the seriousness of the crime(s), sentencing may involve 1 or a combination of punishments. Besides prison or jail time, alternative sentencing may incorporate a suspended sentence, probation, a fine, restitution, community service, or diversion. In most criminal instances, unless it truly is a capital case decided by a jury, the judge will determine the punishment by taking into consideration factors like the defendant’s age, the impact of the crime on the victims, along with the defendant’s level of remorse.
Types of Criminal Sentencing
A Texas judge can decree a sentence that’s determinate. A determinate sentence is a fixed-term regulated by state statute. A judge will establish the length of a sentence by applying sentencing guidelines, mandatory minimum sentencing, and applicable enhanced sentencing for a variety of crimes.
As an alternative to imprisonment, a judge can suspend a prison or jail sentence. This is generally employed in instances involving less serious crimes or for first-time offenders. A suspended sentence may be unconditional or conditional. An unconditional suspended sentence allows the judge to abstain from imposing the proscribed punishment. Nevertheless, the conviction is still a matter of public record.
If the suspended sentence is conditional, the judge can hold off from imposing the punishment for so long as the defendant fulfills the condition of the suspension. Typical conditions may incorporate not committing other crimes or enrolling in a substance abuse program. If a defendant violates the terms of a conditional suspension, the judge can impose the original punishment.
A judge may order probation instead of imposing jail or prison time. Probation will require the offender to follow specific conditions. Standard probation will compel the offender to regularly report to a probation officer, even though an additional, much more invasive type of probation could involve GPS monitoring or house detention. Although on probation, the offender should generally keep a job, not relocate to another state with out permission, undergo drug testing, and keep existing with obligated payments, for example fines or restitution.
An offender that violates any of the conditions could have probation revoked. A prosecutor can decide to file a complaint asking the judge to revoke probation. Upon the determination that the offender violated probation, the judge can impose the original jail or prison sentence, can reinstate probation, or can order far more severe conditions of probation.
As an option to incarceration, a judge might impose a fine. A fine is normally employed in instances involving less severe crimes or those involving first-time offenders. A judge may also impose a fine in conjunction with other varieties of punishments, such as incarceration and probation.
A judge, in conjunction with another type of punishment, might order the offender to pay the victim for the personal injury or the property damage sustained. Restitution is meant to restore the victim and to ensure that the offender is not unjustly enriched. Consequently, a court might order the offender to pay for expenses like medical bills and counseling.
As punishment, a judge can order an offender to perform unpaid community service work. This punishment is often utilised in misdemeanor cases as a way to ensure that the offender repays society for the crime. Community service may involve picking up garbage in a park, clearing brush, or giving lectures about the dangers of the criminal activity. The goals of community service are punishment, reparation, restitution, and rehabilitation.
Rather than impose incarceration in less severe offenses involving misdemeanors, a judge may possibly divert a case. This means that upon the defendant’s completion of a condition, like the completion a treatment or rehabilitation program, a judge may possibly drop the criminal charges. Commonly, these kinds of circumstances involve drug or alcohol abuse, child abuse, and domestic violence.
Houston Criminal Defense: The Charles Johnson Law Firm
If you are accused of violating the terms of your parole or probation or have questions regarding a potential probation offense, please call at anytime for a free initial consultation.
Charles Johnson |
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