Home » Controlled Substance Prosecutions Need Full Defense

Controlled Substance Prosecutions Need Full Defense

Controlled substance prosecutions need full defense- Image of cocaine

Controlled substance prosecutions demand an aggressive defense, says Virginia drug lawyer

Controlled substance prosecutions can be full of cans of worms. As a Virginia drug defense lawyer, I know that such prosecutions call for a full-court press against such criminal charges. Once you have a Virginia drug defense lawyer, your attorney will want to fight for your pretrial release if you are being detained, and will want to avoid any drug dealing prosecution to be transferred to federal court, which is a bigger headache than defending in a commonwealth courthouse. How do you know that your potential Virginia drug lawyer has the right stuff for pursuing your best possible results and for caring about you and your plight? You can start by observing how much close attention the attorney pays to you during your initial consultation and beyond, and how well and hard your hired lawyer fights for pretrial release, in the event you remain defended when you obtain an attorney.

Is my case among the controlled substance prosecutions that will get transferred to federal court?

Criminal defendants caught in controlled substance prosecutions do not want their cases transferred to federal court, where a presumption exists against the bond if charged with trafficking in a schedule I or II drug (for instance, cocaine, heroin, and LSD) and where the advisory / voluntary sentencing guidelines are harsher? If your Virginia drug case does get transferred from state court to federal court, be ready to obtain a lawyer with helpful facility with such defense, not only because you need that, but because the federal court in the Eastern District of Virginia (which would handle cases arising in my county where I work as a Fairfax criminal lawyer) schedules these and all other criminal trial to finish within a matter of months after the criminal proceedings have begun.

What defines drug possession in Virginia criminal law?

As with any controlled substance prosecutions,  possession of a controlled substance under Virginia law means to have knowledge, dominion and control over such substances. If you are charged with possession with intent to distribute controlled substances, then the Virginia criminal law permits the factfinder at trial (whether judge or jury) to make inferences based on the totality of the circumstances (for instance quantity, type of packaging, and presence of large amounts of cash or not) about whether the seized drugs were preserved.

Do drug prosecutions necessitate having the criminal defendant work as a snitch?

The word is on the street that if you get busted for alleged drug trafficking (for instance under Virginia Code § 18.2-248, to seriously consider snitching in the form of disclosing to police and prosecutors what you already know, and helping to nab people in the act of buying or selling drugs, and testifying about all of the above in other criminal defendants' trials. Entering into such arrangements without your already having a lawyer can be risky business. Your lawyer can advise you about the risks and possible benefits of snitching, and can talk with you about the potential benefits and downsides of snitching, and can pursue a written snitching agreement that I intentionally avoid snitch work, so do not have the guidance available that you may be seeking for defending against controlled substance prosecutions.

How does the Virginia drug lab backup help or hurt me?

Generally, but not always, backed up for testing in controlled substance prosecutions is the Virginia drug lab where police send the alleged drugs in your case to be tested. How can that backup help your Virginia drug case? For one thing, the police often arrange for a person to be prosecuted for drug offenses without any certificate of analysis proving the presence of drugs. Of course, long delays in testing the alleged drug(s) in your case can cause inertia. When inertia comes to your case in the firm of not having a chemist report yet, that might lead to a nolle prosequi / non-prejudicial dismissal, where possibly your case will slip through the cracks, and never be recharged with a drug crime.

I am scared about my Virginia drug prosecution. What can I do?

Fear is normal for defendants facing controlled substance prosecutions. You need a qualified lawyer. Talk with your lawyer about the strengths and weakness of your defense, and how to strengthen your defense. If you have any guilt in this case, that is all the more reason to change your behavior patterns that in the past found you associating with (if at all) other people engaged in drug crimes. To commit a crime while awaiting criminal prosecution can be a challenge that you do not want to get caught in.

Fairfax drug lawyer Jonathan Katz pursues your best defense against prosecutions alleging drug sales, possession, and any other alleged drug offenses. Call 703-383-1100 for your free in-person initial consultation with Jon Katz about your court-pending prosecution.