If you have been charged with a federal drug crime or are currently the subject of an ongoing criminal investigation, the first thing you should do is discuss your situation with qualified legal counsel. At Raiser & Kenniff, we consult with individuals who wish to learn what options might be available to them as they attempt to defend themselves against allegations of possession or trafficking of controlled substances. We’ll help you understand what your rights are under the law and how we would address the allegations leveled against you in federal court. Whether we feel that you need a criminal attorney at your side to help you mount a vigorous defense or wise counsel to assist you in negotiating a plea agreement, you can rest assured that we’ll be working hard every step of the way in order to secure the best terms possible for you.
Why is this a federal offense?
Any drug investigation in the United States has the potential to become a federal case, without regard to whether the investigation started at the state or local levels of law enforcement. Even if a case starts out being a purely local affair, federal prosecutors and investigators often bargain with local and state officials to trade defendants who they believe might be beneficial to their own cases, especially if they feel that a particular defendant might be leveraged as a potential witness or source of information in another case. Thanks to minimum sentencing guidelines, even individuals found in possession of small amounts of drugs can face significant federal prison time. Most estimates indicate that between 20- and 25-percent of all individuals incarcerated for drug crimes are jailed for federal offenses.
An attorney should be present
Before a defendant says anything to a local, state or federal investigator regarding a drug case, it’s a good idea to request the presence of a lawyer. Investigators have immense leeway under the law to use a number of techniques in order to gain information from suspects and witnesses, including the right to lie to them. The presence of an attorney may discourage an investigator from trying to approach a case from this angle.
Even in instances where an individual may wish to cooperate with law enforcement, it’s a wise choice to seek the advice of a lawyer before going forward with the process. An attorney can explain what is expected of a person who enters into an agreement with the government and see that their rights are being protected.
What options are available?
At Raiser & Kenniff, we help our clients review the details of the cases brought against them in order to provide what we think are the best available options given the circumstances. An attorney may be able to review your case and identify procedural problems that should be brought to the attention of the court. We’ll check that the officers involved in the investigation handled all evidence properly and highlight where they might have done something wrong. If we believe that pursuing an agreement with the prosecution is the right choice for you, we’ll explain how the system works and help you try to obtain the most favorable terms possible, including asking the court for a reduced sentence or diversion toward alternative programs for first-time or non-violent offenders.
The attorneys of the Raiser & Kenniff help clients present their cases clearly before the court, and our goal is always to see that you receive the fair treatment that you deserve. If there are questions about the investigation, we’ll work hard to see that the judge is made aware of those concerns. We’ll review the search and seizure process that was applied in the case in order to verify that everything was handled properly by law enforcement officials at every stage of the process. If we believe that the prosecution is being overzealous in applying the law against a client, we’ll remind the court of the defendant’s rights before the law.
The Raiser & Kenniff has been helping people like you defend themselves in court since 1976. Contact us today and request a time to discuss your situation with a lawyer who’ll work hard to present your case and protect your rights.