Archive for the ‘drug conviction’ tag

What Happens if You Are Charged with the Wrong Crime?

March 13th, 2017 at 9:40 am

charged with the wrong crime-Rolling Meadows criminal defense lawyerEvery so often, a criminal defendant will be charged with the wrong crime after being arrested. For instance, the police may arrest an individual for having what they believe to be cocaine in his or her possession. However, after a sample of the drug is sent to a drug lab for testing, the substance might be identified as something else.

Cocaine, heroin, powdered methamphetamine, powdered ecstasy and ketamine all can have the same appearance as a white powder and it is possible for police to make a mistake and charge someone with a crime that is different than the crime that was committed.

Do Not Incriminate Yourself

It is very unlikely for a criminal defendant to speak up and correct law enforcement about the inaccuracy of the charges. Doing so would be incriminating to oneself. Therefore, since you are not talking, the police will charge you with the crime that they think you committed, and the state prosecutor will be given the charges once your criminal drug case makes it to court.  

Prosecutors Can Amend Your Drug Charges

Just because law enforcement charged you with the incorrect crime does not mean that you will not be prosecuted.You might think that the state will never be able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you committed the drug crime that you are accused of because the drug was something other than what law enforcement believed it to be. However, this is incorrect.

Once law enforcement and state prosecutors are clear on what drug you had in your possession—there is scientific analysis of the drug compound and the drug has been chemically identified—the prosecution will be able to update the charges that are being levied against you.

Illinois takes drug offenses and all other crimes very seriously. Therefore it is possible for state prosecutors to amend the charges that are pending against you when evidence comes to light that the crime that has been charged is inappropriate for the circumstances.

Does it Make a Difference?

The consequences for possession of many types of controlled substances are often very similar. Hence, you might be wondering: does being charged with the correct crime matter? There are some variations in the law concerning the punishment associated with possession of certain quantities of drugs.

Penalties for drug possession are usually based on the amount of drug that is found by law enforcement and the drug type. As such, it could be possible that you are charged with a drug offense that carries a more serious penalty than if you were charged with the correct crime.  

Drug Charges Require the Help of a Criminal Defense Attorney

Being charged with possession of a controlled substance is a big deal and it is important that you hire an experienced Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney to help you with your defense strategy. The consequences for a drug conviction can be hefty and can mean years of jail time. Your freedom is in jeopardy, so do not delay in getting a lawyer.

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?ActID=1966&ChapterID=54&SeqStart=19800000&SeqEnd=20700000

How Far Can Illinois Drug Asset Forfeiture Reach?

December 9th, 2016 at 10:55 am

Illinois Drug Asset Forfeiture, Rolling Meadows Criminal Defense LawyerBegin caught while committing a drug offense and/or being charged with a drug offense is tough in its own right. You will need to hire a criminal defense lawyer and go to court, and you can potentially face jail time, fines, probation, and a criminal record that will be with you for a long time. Additionally, the police can take your personal property if it is associated with the drug offense, such as your car, money, or other belongings.

Illinois Drug Asset Forfeiture Laws Are Far-Reaching

Illinois has certain aggressive and broad drug asset forfeiture laws. Under Illinois drug asset forfeiture laws, any property that is associated with criminal drug activity can be seized by the police. This causes many problems for people who own property that was taken into custody by police. These laws do not distinguish between the person who allegedly committed a crime and who actually owns the property. Moreover, the laws extend to other items that may have been purchased with money associated with a crime. Finally, the property is not automatically released if the charges against the alleged offender are dropped.

If you borrowed your mother’s car, went driving to your friend’s house, and for some reason were pulled over, the car was searched, drugs were found, and you were arrested, your mother’s car could be seized under the state’s drug asset forfeiture laws—even though it is not your car. Your mother will have to request that her car be returned to her, which can be a time-consuming hassle.

Additionally, the Fourth District Appeals Court just recently held that the police can also seize property that was purchased with money associated with drug crimes when there is a direct link between the property and the drug money. According to the Herald & Review, an Illinois woman lost out on a $50,000 winning lottery ticket because it was suspected by police to have been purchased with drug money. The woman herself was not directly involved with drugs, rather her boyfriend was, but the police took her winning lottery ticking nonetheless.

The point is that while being charged with a drug crime directly affects you and your loved ones, there can be other complications for those who are close to you as well, pending their property ends up muddled in with your alleged offense.

Let Us Help You Today

If you have been arrested and charged with a drug offense, you need to focus on fighting and beating the drug charges that have been lodged against you. The consequences for a drug conviction are very serious and could have a long-term impact on your life. Whether you are facing charges for possession of a controlled substance or cannabis, distribution, or manufacturing drugs, you should speak with a skilled Rolling Meadows criminal defense attorney who has a lot of experience handling drug cases.

Source:

http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=1977&ChapterID=54