Posted by Jim Yeargan in Jim's Blog on August 13, 2018
Recently, more than $5 million of cocaine, heroin, and methamphetamine as well as $850,000 in cash were found as part of a large-scale drug bust that occurred in metro Atlanta.
The United States Drug Enforcement Administration has already commented that the investigation started in south Fulton County, which led to a search in Gwinnett County. During the search of one of the vehicles targeted in the investigation, law enforcement discovered 250 pounds of crystal methamphetamine hidden under packaging in the truck. As a result, the truck’s driver was arrested and charged with trafficking methamphetamine.
During the search of a second vehicle, law enforcement discovered 25 kilograms of cocaine, which led to several involved parties being charged with trafficking cocaine. A search was then conducted of a home where a hidden compartment was discovered containing eight kilograms of heroin, firearms, drug packaging material, and the $850,000 in cash. These are part of an ongoing investigation involving the DEA and Gwinnett County District Attorney’s Office.
The Most Common Defenses to Drug Trafficking Charges
Even though drug trafficking charges frequently result in particularly severe penalties, there are numerous defenses that can be raised in response to these charges. Some of the defenses that are most commonly raised in response to charges of drug trafficking include the following:
- Duress: If a person is forced or threatened to do something at the risk of harm or death occurring to the person or their loved ones, a defense of death can be raised. In some situations, drug traffickers force individuals to engage in illegal trafficking activity by threatening harm.
- Lack of knowledge: While a person charged with drug trafficking will often be unable to avoid the charges by arguing that they did not know the law, a defense based on lack of knowledge is likely to result in less severe penalties. As a result, some people convicted of drug trafficking who do not have any other options sometimes choose to use this defense.
- Mistake of fact: If you were under the mistaken belief that what you were transporting was legal to carry, but the substance was actually illegal drugs, then you can likely raise a strong defense in response to trafficking charges.
- Other uses: Some drugs and drug paraphernalia have secondary uses that are not illegal. If you are charged with drug trafficking because you were carrying items that had another purpose, you likely have the basis on which to create a strong argument.
- Ownership: To convict a person of drug charges, the prosecution must establish that you owned or had the control of the drugs in question. If are able to establish that drugs did not actually belong to you, you can likely raise a strong defense.
Contact an Experienced Drug Crimes Lawyer
If you are convicted of a drug crime, you can end up facing numerous life-changing consequences including lengthy prisons sentences and large fines. For this reason, you should not hesitate to contact an experienced defense attorney if you are charged with a drug crime. At Yeargan & Kert LLC, our attorneys have significant experience creating strong legal strategies to respond to drug charges. Contact our law office today to schedule an initial free consultation.