In Illinois, the War on Drugs is still going strong with harsh penalties for all drug offenses ranging from simple possession to narcotics trafficking. Drug charges are especially problematic because even a single conviction could be viewed by employers as a sign of an addiction and by potential landlords as a sign of involvement in repeated criminal activity. With the help of an experienced criminal defense attorney, it can be possible to beat a drug charge.
Drug Offense Penalties
While certain counties and municipalities have recently shifted away from strictly enforcing all drug laws, possession of all types of controlled substances is still criminalized in Illinois with consequences varying based on the type of narcotic. For example, possession of a small amount of marijuana is a Class C misdemeanor carrying a relatively small fine or brief jail sentence, but possession of any amount of heroin or cocaine is classified as a felony. For amounts of any narcotic deemed to be too large for personal use, felony charges will almost always result along with possible additional charges related to narcotics trafficking. In addition, there are enhanced penalties and mandatory minimum sentences for those with previous criminal convictions.
Defending a Drug Charge
Even when police say they caught someone red-handed, there are usually several possible defenses. For example, constructive possession may have been wrongfully alleged against every occupant of a house or car in which drugs were discovered. Constitutional defenses, such as unlawful search and seizure, also frequently result in charges being dismissed.
Bennett Law Offices frequently appears in the courts of Kane, DuPage, DeKalb, Cook, Will, Kendall and surrounding counties to defend drug charges, negotiate for reduced charges, or bring cases to trial. To speak with an experienced criminal defense attorney about the specific circumstances surrounding your case, call to schedule a consultation today.