Massachusetts Legal Developments Blog

Facing Drug Trafficking Charges?

Police in Great Barrington recently arrested three individuals in connection to an ongoing narcotics investigation. The arrests arose in connection with two separate motor vehicle stops. In addition to the stops, police also executed a search warrant on a local hotel room and one of the individual’s vehicles. The amount of substance that is believed to qualify as fentanyl is considered to be “trafficking weight.”  

Law enforcement also seized a large amount of cash. One of the individuals who was arrested has since been charged with distribution of a class A drug as well as trafficking a controlled substance of more than 36 grams. The other two individuals who were arrested have been charged with possession of a class A substance. 

Massachusetts takes the offense of drug trafficking seriously. One of the best ways to navigate these charges is to understand some of the critical details about how these charges are made.

What Separates Simple Drug Possession From Drug Trafficking?

The prosecution in Massachusetts has the burden of establishing that a person was in possession of a certain drug and that the individual either sold or intended to sell the drug. The act of selling or intending to sell is what separates the offense of drug trafficking from simple possession. Some pieces of evidence that the prosecution commonly relies on to establish a person sold or intended to sell drugs are baggies, cash, ledges, and scales. 

Elements that Impact the Severity of Charges

Some of the elements that influence the severity of drug trafficking charges include:

  • Massachusetts law punishes some drugs more harshly than others. 

  • People are often charged with offenses in addition to drug trafficking charges. Some of the other offenses with which people are commonly charged include money laundering and drug manufacturing.

  • If a person has a previous criminal history, the consequences of drug trafficking charges increase in likely severity.

Defenses to Drug Trafficking Charges

Drug trafficking charges result in serious penalties, but fortunately, there are several ways to respond to these charges. Some of the most common legal defenses that people raise in response to these charges include:

  • Attacking the credibility of a witness who provided details about the drug activity is often a powerful defense.

  • Establishing that evidence was only obtained as a result of the violation of constitutional rights is a common defense technique.

  • To satisfy the elements of a drug trafficking charge, the prosecution must show that the drugs in question were actually for sale and not for personal use. Sometimes, a defense can be created around the argument that the prosecution has not proven this element.

  • Sometimes, a defense can be raised that scientific evidence has revealed that the drugs were not actually an illegal substance.

Contact a Compassionate Criminal Defense Attorney

Following a drug-related criminal charge, one of the best steps that you can take is to promptly obtain the assistance of an experienced criminal defense lawyer. Contact attorney Edward R Molari today and during a free case evaluation, he can discuss your available options to respond to these charges.