Many drugs will be handled at the state level, there are some instances where the feds can get involved. Whether a drug charge will be filed in state court or federal court involves many factors, including the amount of drugs at issue and a defendant’s criminal history. There are numerous other types of drug charges that can qualify as federal crimes.
You’ll need a solid criminal defense in this case. Berry Law’s attorneys in Nebraska have a stellar reputation for winning cases in federal courts. To lessen the impact of a drug charge on your life, we provide you with individualized service and develop a proactive strategy.
Federal Drug Crimes We Represent
There are a wide variety of banned drugs, and federal law addresses their illegal possession, distribution, manufacture, trafficking, and cultivation, all uniquely for each one. Drugs like marijuana, methamphetamine, heroin, ecstasy, cocaine, and prescription pain relievers like Oxycodone and Vicodin are all covered by federal regulations.
The Controlled Substances Act prohibits several drug-related offenses, such as:
- Drug distribution: Producing, selling, or transporting illicit drugs to sell them to others.
- Drug manufacturing: Running a facility with the intent of producing or selling illicit drugs. As well as putting others in harm’s way while doing it.
- Drug conspiracy: Encourage and aid in producing, selling, or importing unlawful drugs.
- Criminal enterprise drug crimes: Mandatory minimum 20 years and maximum of life can be imposed on a leader of an organization of five or more individuals who engage in a continuing series of drug violations from which the person derived substantial income.
Federal Drug Offense Penalties
Regarding federal drug crimes, the charges and punishments vary depending on different factors. When it comes to drugs, what are the federal consequences? The judge in a case involving a federal drug felony will often follow predetermined federal sentencing guidelines.
These penalties fall into one of “schedules,” depending on the nature of the crime.
- Schedule I: Substances have a significant potential for misuse and no accepted medicinal use.
- Schedule II: Substances have a high misuse potential and may develop a dependency on the drug in some form.
- Schedule III, IV, and V: Substances have less potential of being misused. The severity level descends from Schedule III to Schedule V, with Schedule III being the most severe.
The sentences for federal drug crimes vary depending on the substance and the schedule under which it is classified. Here are the mandatory sentences and fines for different schedules:
Schedule I and II
Schedule I and II offenses have the highest penalties. You may be facing a five-year mandatory minimum in prison with a maximum of 40 years and be fined up to $5 million for a first violation. For a subsequent offense, you could be facing no less than 10 years and no more than life, and up to an 8 million dollar fine.
Most crimes involving drugs under Schedule III also carry a prison term. You could be facing up to 10 years in prison and up to a $500,000 fine. A second offense carries up to 20 years in prison and up to a $1,000,000 dollar fine.
The penalties for most Schedule IV crimes include up to five years imprisonment and a $250,000 fine for a first conviction. In case of a second offense, you could spend up to 10 years in prison and pay a maximum fine of $500,000.
The penalties in Schedule V are the mildest of all. First-time offenders face up to a year in prison and a $100,000 fine. The second-time offenders face a maximum sentence of four years with a fine of up to $200,000.
Despite mandatory sentencing guidelines in the federal system, it is still possible to get a federal drug crime sentence reduced. To be successful you need the strong legal guidance of an experienced federal drug crimes lawyer in Nebraska.
What Makes a Drug Crime a Federal Offense
If a federal agent makes a drug arrest, or if state or local police collaborate with federal agencies on a drug investigation, the drug crime has a high chance of being prosecuted at the federal level. It may also be considered a federal offense if the drug trafficking involves crossing international boundaries or includes more than a particular number of narcotics.
You Need Strong Defense Against Federal Drug Charges
The stakes are high if you’re facing drug-related criminal charges in federal court since the federal criminal justice system has a reputation for being harsh on offenders. Our criminal defense lawyers have years of experience defending clients against federal drug accusations, and we use that experience to craft effective defense strategies.
The prosecution’s primary goal is to prove you guilty of the crime you’re being tried for. Still, a conviction is not possible under the law unless the prosecution can establish its case beyond a reasonable doubt.
By comparing the prosecution’s evidence with their own findings, our federal crimes defense attorneys can craft a solid case that explains your behavior or presents an alternative narrative. Our job is to cast doubt on the prosecution’s case by presenting a rebuttal to the evidence presented against you to secure an acquittal.
A Nebraska federal drug crimes lawyer can help you with the legal aspect of your case.
Contact our Federal Drug Crimes Attorneys in Nebraska for Legal Representation
At Berry Law, our federal drug crime attorneys in Nebraska will do everything we can to construct a defense to help you win your case.
We will investigate your charges, advise you of your legal rights, and communicate with federal authorities on your behalf. If we determine that a conviction is likely if your case goes to a jury trial, we will work tirelessly to negotiate a favorable plea agreement with the prosecution to secure a reduction in charges or a shorter sentence and avoid trial.
If you wish to discuss your case specifics, get a free consultation from our lawyers by contacting us today.