PA Drug Crime Defense Attorneys
The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is a very densely populated state that attracts many out of state visitors, business persons, students and vacationers. There are many cultural and social activities to engage in near and around Pennsylvania. One such activity may be the use of drugs while at a bar, party or social event. Possessing, using and selling drugs is against the law in Pennsylvania. If you have been charged with a drug crime anywhere in Pennsylvania it is a wise choice to speak with our Pennsylvania drug crime lawyers immediately regarding protecting your freedom, reputation and your rights.
Please contact our Pittsburgh Pennsylvania drug crime lawyers regarding your pending Pennsylvania drug crime charges. By retaining a skilled Pennsylvania narcotics crime defense attorney you will feel better at night knowing that your rights will be protected. The PA drug charge defense attorneys on our team serve all of Pennsylvania including Abington, Allentown, Altoona, Bensalem Township, Bethlehem, Easton, Erie, Harrisburg, Haverford, Lancaster, Lower Merion Township, Media, Norristown, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Reading, Scranton, State College, Upper Darby, Upper Merion Township, Wilkes-Barre & York, Pennsylvania.
Misdemeanor Narcotics Crimes
All states, including the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, have very strict laws regarding any type of drug crime. A drug crime in Pennsylvania is going to be deemed either a misdemeanor or a felony charge. Even a misdemeanor drug charge can wreak havoc on many aspects of your life if convicted. This is true if you are a minor, or an adult. If you are facing misdemeanor drug charges anywhere in Pennsylvania do not wait to consult with a Pittsburgh PA misdemeanor drug crime defense attorney.
The following are very common misdemeanor drug crimes in Pennsylvania:
Marijuana possession (including synthetic marijuana/Spice)
Designer drug possession
Illegally obtained prescription meds
Performance enhancing drugs (anabolic steroids, growth hormone, thyroid hormones, etc.)
Drug paraphernalia possession (bongs, rolling papers, syringes, etc.)
The amount of drug, narcotic or medication as well as what you intend to do with it will determine if you are charged with a misdemeanor or felony. Your prior criminal history will also determine what penalties and consequences you face. No matter if you are facing misdemeanor or felony drug charges in PA our Erie, Pennsylvania drug crime lawyers can help you.
Juvenile Drug Crime Laws In Pennsylvania
Underaged drug possession, or juvenile drug possession, is defined in the state of Pennsylvania as when a person under the age of 18 willfully and knowingly possesses a controlled substance without a legal reason. Some drugs are allowed by the state, if the person has a prescription for the drug, but it is illegal for these drugs to be possessed by those who lack the necessary permission to have them. These prescription drugs may not be distributed, under any circumstances, by those who are prescribed.
Underaged drug charges in the state of Pennsylvania range widely from prescription drugs to illegal drugs such as marijuana or cocaine, and addiction is what will normally lead to juveniles across the state being faced with drug charges. The charges a juvenile will face after being found with illegal drugs will vary depending on the drug a person is in possession of and the amount of said drug. For Pennsylvania’s juveniles, prescription drugs and marijuana are the most common types of drugs that lead to underaged drug charges; however other drugs are regularly found as well.
If your child has been arrested on a drug charge you absolutely need the help of our State College Pennsylvania juvenile drug crime lawyers. As your child’s adult life has not really started you need to do everything they start their adult life on even footing. If underage drug crimes are serious enough, or there are multiple arrests and convictions, they may not be able to do things such as go to college, rent an apartment or house and join the military.
Felony Drug Charges In Pennsylvania
Under current Pennsylvania law some drug crimes are treated as felonies. These can include anabolic steroid possession, performance enhancing drug possession, drug possession charges over a certain amount, repeated drug crime offenses.
All drug crimes are serious. For some misdemeanor charges the aftermath of a conviction can result in worse long term consequences than the actual legal consequences. An example would be an arrest for simple possession that led to community service and fines. However, due to the arrest you were expelled from the college or university you attend.
Felony charges always bring with them very serious consequences such as possible jail time, heavy fines and court costs, possible probation, possible house arrest and possible loss of child custody. Do not fathom going through the Pennsylvania legal system alone. Let our team of Doylestown Pennsylvania drug crime lawyers protect you, your rights and your freedom.
Pennsylvania College Student Drug Crimes
Pennsylvania is home to well over 100 higher learning institutions in the form of technical and trade schools, community and junior colleges, colleges and universities. Some are smaller local schools like Gettysburg, Kutztown, Shippensburg, Widener University and York College. Still others are nationally recognized schools such as Temple, Villanova, Pitt, Drexel, Penn State and University of Pennsylvania. Regardless of the size of the school you attend if you are arrested for a drug crime in Pennsylvania you run the risk of getting kicked out of school. This is especially true if the arrest took place on campus.
In addition to the criminal aspect of your arrest you may also face sanctions by the institution itself. Again, this only reiterates why you need the help of our skilled Easton, Pennsylvania drug crime lawyers serving Pennsylvania college students.
Pennsylvania Drugged Driving Laws
Facing drugged driving charges in Pennsylvania can result in serious consequences. Oftentimes, when a
person hears that a person was charged with a DUI he assumes the person was drunk. Though driving
under the influence charges are common, driving under the influence of drugs is just a prevalent.
Pennsylvania treats drugged driving very much like drunk driving. Drugged driving occurs when a person
operates a motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs. To be convicted of a drugged driving
charge, the prosecution must prove that there was any amount of a controlled substance in your blood
as determined under Pennsylvania’s system of categorizing drugs. Schedule I drugs include heroin,
crystal meth, and LSD. You may also be arrested for drugged driving if you are under the influence of a
prescription drug that prohibits driving after ingestion.
Pennsylvania has adopted a zero-tolerance approach to drugged driving. This means that any amount of
drugs detected in your system will result in a drugged driving arrest. For example, the smell of alcohol or
marijuana could potentially result in arrest.
Common penalties for a drugged driving conviction include the following:
Serving up to a maximum of six-months in jail and paying the court a fine of up to $5,000. The
driver may also have her driver’s license suspended.
A subsequent defender may face a mandatory jail sentence of ninety days in jail and potentially
pay a fine up to $10,000.
Contact our Lower Merion Township, Pennsylvania drug crime lawyers for a confidential consultation regarding your drugged driving charge. We can help have the charge asserted against you reduced or completely dismissed.
Schedules of Controlled Substances In Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania state drug crime laws, like all states drug crime laws, categorizes all controlled substances. All controlled substance, drug, narcotic or medication is classified according to a specific class or “schedule”. The class it falls into is based on the drugs severity, how addictive the substance is and whether there is a known medical use for the drug. Each schedule carries a different set of penalties and standards.
The five drug schedules under Pennsylvania law range from the most serious drugs (Schedule I) to the least serious (Schedule V).
- SCHEDULE I. These drugs are rated for the highest potential for abuse, generally have no known medical use in the U.S, and a lack of accepted safety for use under medical supervision. These drugs include opiates and opium derivatives (heroin), hallucinogens (LSD), marijuana.
- SCHEDULE II. These drugs have a high potential for abuse, but they differ from Schedule I drugs in that they have a very limited currently accepted medical use in the U.S. or a currently accepted medical use with severe restrictions. Schedule II drugs include morphine, PCP, cocaine, methadone and methamphetamine.
- SCHEDULE III. These drugs have less potential for abuse than the controlled substances previously listed and have a currently accepted medical use in treatment. Schedule III drugs include anabolic steroids, HGH, codeine and hydrocodone with aspirin.
- SCHEDULE IV. These drugs have a low potential for abuse relative to the drugs previously listed and include substances such as Valium and Xanax. Many prescription drugs are classified as Schedule IV.
- SCHEDULE V. These drugs are rated for the lowest potential for dependency and are accepted for medical uses in the U.S. Schedule V drugs include medications such as cough syrups with small amounts of codeine.
Why You Need Our York Pennsylvania Drug Crime Lawyers
A drug possession or drug crime conviction in Pennsylvania will alter your life on several levels such as personal, financial and professional. You will face fines, court costs, attorneys fees and possible jail time. By enlisting the aid of our highly experienced drug possession defense lawyers you will be assured that your rights are protected throughout the entire legal process. In addition, having our Norristown Pennsylvania drug crime lawyers on your side will ideally help your case by achieving the best possible outcome.
Contact Our Narcotics Charge Defense Attorneys
For effective drug crime representation contact our Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania drug crime lawyers. They possess a wealth of experience handling all types of drug charges and criminal cases throughout all of Pennsylvania including Media, Harrisburg, Bethlehem, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Norristown, Lock Haven, Altoona, Gettysburg, Kutztown and Shippensburg, Pennsylvania. As your legal counsel will do everything necessary to effectively protect your rights, your freedom and obtain the most favorable outcome possible.
Contact our team of drug crime defense lawyers immediately should you need any of the following:
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Philadelphia, Pennsylvania juvenile drug crime defense lawyers
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Reading PA drug possession defense lawyers
Allentown PA narcotics crime defense attorneys
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Pennsylvania marijuana possession lawyers
Pennsylvania cocaine possession defense attorneys
In Pennsylvania, section 780-113(a)(30) of the Controlled Substance, Drug, Device, and Cosmetic Act, prohibits a person from delivering, possessing with the intent to deliver, or manufacturing any controlled substance or counterfeit substance unless licensed by the state.
A violation of section 780-113(a)(30) is a felony offense and carries serious criminal penalties that could include jail time and hefty fines. A conviction can also result in the imposition of collateral consequences, such as license suspensions, criminal records, and a lifetime prohibition of the possession of firearms.
Mandatory Minimum Sentences for Drug Offenses
These felony drug charges also sometimes invoke severe mandatory minimum sentences. The mandatory sentences require total imprisonment, which means that the sentence must be served in a correctional facility and not in the in-home detention program. Examples of mandatory minimum sentences that apply in felony drug cases include:
- Drug-free school zone
- Drug trafficking
- Drug trafficking to a minor
The mandatory minimum sentences based upon violations of section 780-113(a)(30) only apply to the delivery, possession with intent to deliver, or manufacturing charges, and they do not apply to charges of attempt or conspiracy to commit those acts.
Mandatory Minimum Sentences Are Sentencing Enhancements
People mistakenly believe that a mandatory minimum sentence must be referenced in the charges that are filed by the police or drug detectives. In the past, the district attorney was only required to present evidence to support a mandatory minimum sentence to the judge at the time of sentencing.
The mandatory minimum sentences associated with felony drug offenses have been held to be unconstitutional by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, so prosecutors are currently unable to force a judge to impose mandatory prison sentences on non-violent drug offenders. However, the Pennsylvania legislature is considering amendments to those laws that would allow them to be used again by prosecutors.
Applicable Mandatory Minimum Sentences
It is important to retain an experienced York, Pennsylvania drug crime lawyers as they are aware of possible mandatory minimum sentences and factor those issues into developing an overall defense strategy. There are times when a person is convicted of or pleads guilty to a felony drug charge and learns of the mandatory minimum sentence afterwards.
Our State College, Pennsylvania drug crime lawyers have been representing people charged with misdemeanor drug possession charges and felony drug delivery, possession with intent to deliver, and manufacturing charges since 2004.
Pennsylvania Drug Crime Facts & Statistics
According to studies conducted by www.justice.gov Philadelphia, the largest city in Pennsylvania and the fifth largest city in the United States, is the center of drug-related activity in the commonwealth. More drugs are sold in Philadelphia than in any other city in Pennsylvania, and most midlevel and possibly some retail distributors throughout the state obtain their drug supply from traffickers in Philadelphia. The city is a major distribution center and transshipment point for both licit and illicit commodities destined for Pennsylvania and the Mid-Atlantic region, in large part because the city is centrally located among the Mid-Atlantic states and has a vast transportation infrastructure. Other cities of significant but lesser importance to the state’s drug situation are Pittsburgh, Reading, and Erie. Pittsburgh is the second most populated city in the commonwealth and the forty-fifth largest city in the country. Drug distribution and abuse are widespread in Pittsburgh, which is also a regional distribution center for drugs. The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Pittsburgh District Office and the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police believe that most drugs brought to the city are sold to local users, but that a portion reaches midlevel and retail distributors in southwestern Pennsylvania, eastern Ohio, and northwestern West Virginia. Reading, the sixth largest city in the state (population 81,207), serves as a transshipment point for wholesale quantities of marijuana and smaller amounts of cocaine and heroin sold in eastern Pennsylvania. Erie, the fourth largest city in Pennsylvania, is located on the southern shore of Lake Erie. Transportation groups that smuggle drugs across Lake Erie present a risk to the city and the western part of the state.
Both licit and illicit commodities are transported overland into and through Pennsylvania by commercial trucks, private vehicles, rental vehicles, and commercial buses. The combined interstate and state highway system in Pennsylvania is an efficient and heavily used transportation network. In 2000, approximately 139 million passenger vehicles and more than 21 million commercial vehicles traveled on the Pennsylvania Turnpike (also known as I-76 and I-276 east-west and I-476 north-south), according to the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission. Interstate 95, which runs from Florida to Maine, passes directly through Philadelphia and is recognized as the East Coast’s major drug transportation corridor. Interstates 70, 79, 80, and 81 provide access to many midsize cities and smaller towns in Pennsylvania. In 1997, nearly $61 billion worth of freight was transported into Pennsylvania. The freight was shipped by surface modes from California, Florida, New Jersey, New York, and Texas, the states where most drugs enter the country.
Pennsylvania Drug Court Programs
In the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania those facing drug charges may be eligible for one of the various ‘in lieu of jail’ programs offered throughout the state. PA drug courts combine intensive judicial supervision, mandatory drug testing, treatment and incentives to help offenders with substance abuse problems break the cycle of addiction and crime.
Drug court teams are typically led by a judge and include a prosecutor, defense counsel, treatment provider, probation officers, law enforcement and court coordinator who work together to support and monitor a participant’s recovery. They maintain a critical balance of authority, supervision, support and encouragement.
Court programs require intensive supervision based on frequent drug testing and court appearances, and implement tightly structured treatment processes and recovery services. This high level of supervision allows supervisors to react swiftly to impose appropriate sanctions or reinstate criminal proceedings when participants do not comply with the program.
Pennsylvania’s first drug court lead to the creation of the Pennsylvania Association of Drug Court Professionals (PADCP), an advocate for the establishment of drug courts throughout the Commonwealth.
Adult Drug/DUI Court Accreditation Program
The objective of the accreditation process is to assess a problem solving court’s adherence to the 10 Key Components of Drug Courts, which are the nationally recognized framework for program operation. Close adherence to these components has a direct correlation with program outcomes.
Who Our Media Pennsylvania Drug Crime Lawyers Represent
Our Pennsylvania drug crime lawyers serve those facing criminal and drug charges throughout Pennsylvania including all PA counties: Adams County, Allegheny County, ArmstrongCounty, BeaverCounty, Bedford County, Berks County, Blair County, Bradford County, Bucks County, Butler County, Cambria County, Cameron County, Carbon County, Centre County, Chester County, Clarion County, Clearfield County, Clinton County, Columbia County, Crawford County, Cumberland County, Dauphin County, Delaware County, Elk County, Erie County, Fayette County, Forest County, Franklin County, Fulton County, Greene County, Huntingdon County, Indiana County, Jefferson County, Juniata County, Lackawanna County, Lancaster County, Lawrence County, Lebanon County, Lehigh County, Luzerne County, Lycoming County, McKean County, Mercer County, Mifflin County, Monroe County, Montgomery County, Montour County, Northampton County, Northumberland County, Perry County, Philadelphia County, Pike County, Potter County, Schuylkill County, Snyder County, Somerset County, Sullivan County, Susquehanna County, Tioga County, Union County, Venango County, Warren County, Washington County, Wayne County, Westmoreland County, Wyoming County & York County, Pennsylvania.
Why Hire Our Pennsylvania Drug Crime Lawyers
Many people fail to understand the value in hiring an experienced Pennsylvania criminal defense
attorney. Most people assume that a minor criminal offense will result in probation or serving
community service. This simply is not true. Pennsylvania has mandatory jail time for many offenses.
Hiring our Pennsylvania drug crime lawyers may result in the charge asserted against you being
reduced or completely dismissed. Numerous programs are available to help first-time offenders avoid
jail time. Unfortunately, without an experienced criminal defense attorney on your side, you may not
potentially qualify for any of them.
The key reasons you should hire an experienced Pennsylvania criminal defense attorney include the
Proficient expertise in defending the accused. Experienced criminal attorneys have studied and
invested countless resources into understanding every aspect of criminal law and procedure. An
experienced attorney can build a strong case on your behalf.
Protect your best interests. Hire an attorney that will protect your best interests. An attorney
focused on your best interest will keep you updated on how your case is proceeding and often
sound legal advice on the plea deals you should accept or reject.
They provide moral support. Being prosecuted for a crime can be stressful. Your defense
attorney, while handling your case in a professional manner, will helping you cope with your
feelings and emotions. Your attorney may refer you to other professionals to ensure you get the
help you need.
Contact Our Pennsylvania Drug Crime Lawyers
Drug charges are very serious and can alter the course of your life. Please contact our Bensalem Pennsylvania drug crime lawyers for a confidential consultation. We can protect your legal rights and preserve your reputation.
Our Pennsylvania drug crime lawyers serve the entire Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. This includes Allentown, Altoona, Erie, York, Chester, West Chester, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Lancaster, Harrisburg, Kennett Square, Media, Easton, Bethlehem, Wilkes-Barre, Scranton, Reading, Abington, Norristown, Washington, Wayne, Paoli, Coatesville, Lebanon, Carlisle, State College, Lock Haven, Bensalem, Lower Merion, Upper Merion, Upper Darby, Plymouth Meeting, Chambersburg, Greensburg, New Castle, Hazelton, Lehigh & The Poconos.