If you have been charged with a drug offense, New Jersey courts may be inflicting harsh penalties on you. Such convictions can leave detrimental consequences on your life. Read on to learn what potential defenses you can take against your drug possession charges and how a seasoned Middlesex County drug crime attorney at the Law Offices of Michael A. Policastro can assist you with your case.
What defenses can I take against my drug possession conviction?
It is important to understand your rights when being accused of drug possession. Below are some useful defenses:
Search and seizure:
For one, only under certain circumstances is it legal for authorities to search you or your property for illicit drugs. Such circumstances include if they have a valid search warrant or if the drugs are found in plain view. So, if authorities find evidence through illegal means, you can use a search and seizure challenge. If proven true, the court will exclude this evidence from the trial.
Drugs belong to someone else:
Additionally, you can argue that the drugs did not belong to you or you otherwise had no idea that drugs were in your possession. However, this may be a difficult argument to make, as prosecutors usually only need to prove that you had control of or access to the drugs.
Crime lab analysis:
To prove that the seized substance was indeed an illicit drug, prosecutors must send the evidence to a crime lab for analysis. If you believe there were errors or discrepancies in the crime lab analysis report, you can raise this issue in the trial and require the crime lab analyst to testify.
Chain of custody:
The authorities who seize your illicit drugs are required to secure them in an evidence room or locker. If the drugs are missing, you can argue their existence. And even if they are presented in trial, you can argue that they are not the same ones taken from you or that the authorities mishandled them throughout the course of the investigation.
If you believe that the authorities harassed or threaten you into committing a drug crime that you otherwise would not have committed, you can take up the possible defense of entrapment.
In the state of New Jersey, medical marijuana has been legalized. You may require a doctor’s signed recommendation, but with this, you will be able to show clear evidence of medical necessity.
If you require any assistance with navigating these defenses, do not hesitate in reaching out to one of the knowledgeable Middlesex County criminal defense attorneys today.
Contact our experienced New Jersey firm
No matter your circumstances, if you are facing criminal charges, contact the Law Offices of Michael A. Policastro today for the experienced legal counsel you deserve and need.