When it comes to drug crimes, the law varies across the different states. In Texas, crimes involving drugs are serious offenses that could potentially attract lengthy prison sentences and hefty fines.
There are different types of drug crimes in Texas for which you could find yourself on the wrong side of the law, as detailed below.
As the name implies, drug possession occurs when drugs are found on you or your property. It is one of the most common drug crimes, and for the charges to stick, the prosecution must show you exercised some form of control over the drugs in question.
This means you can be charged with possession even if you asked someone else to move the drugs on your behalf. Other drug charges can accompany a possession charge, like possession of drug paraphernalia, possession with an intent to distribute, or trafficking.
Manufacturing controlled substances, also known as possession with intent to manufacture, is a crime. Manufacture includes extraction, lab preparation, and cultivation. In addition, if you are found with the ingredients or chemicals used to make such drugs, you could be charged with intent to manufacture.
It is a crime to be involved in any step of the manufacturing process, including repackaging or relabelling controlled substances.
There is a thin line between drug possession and drug trafficking. Drug trafficking is a more serious crime and has several elements to it as compared to possession. They include:
- Large amounts of drugs
- A considerable amount of cash
- Weighing scales or materials used for packaging
Texas law prohibits possessing or delivering a controlled substance with the intention to distribute.
How Much Time Are You Facing?
The penalty you are facing depends on the amount of drugs in question and their schedule. Controlled substances are classified depending on their medical use and abuse potential. The higher the schedule, the more severe the penalties.
Texas law has stiff penalties for drug crimes. For instance, manufacturing or trafficking attracts a maximum sentence of 99 years and a $250,000 fine, while possession beyond a certain amount carries mandatory jail time. Other factors like violence or involving children in drug crimes can increase the potential punishment.
Possible Defense Strategies for Your Drug Crimes
Given the seriousness of drug crimes under Texas law, it is important to fight these charges to secure your future and freedom. There are several defense strategies your attorney could rely on to counter the drug charges you are facing. They include:
- Asking for proof that the alleged drugs found in your possession consist of actual controlled substances
- Asserting that the evidence was not obtained legally, for example, through an unlawful car search
- Denying ownership of the drugs
- Claiming you were under duress from a third party
- You can also claim entrapment whereby you were induced to commit the crime by the actions of law enforcement officials, among others.
Get Help From Experienced Attorneys
Drug crimes can get complicated. Some charges overlap, so you could be facing several drug-related charges from one incident. Bearing in mind how severe the penalties are under Texas law, it is crucial to reach out to an experienced law firm in Fort Worth with extensive knowledge of the legal landscape to help you navigate the case.
Drug crimes are criminal, and the prosecution has to prove beyond reasonable doubt you are guilty. However, a seasoned attorney may poke holes in the evidence presented and have your case dismissed in its entirety, or the charges lessened.