Smuggling is the secret transportation of goods past a checkpoint. Secured facilities, or borders, are examples of smuggling. For example, a New York drug smuggling case would be an example where someone smuggled an illegal substance, or a drug, that an individual shouldn’t be moving across the border. New York is very strict about smuggling laws. Virtually everything is smuggled into the country, ranging from humans to cigarettes. The penalty for smuggling can be severe. The federal government uses specific guidelines for sentencing. Most of these sentencing guidelines require mandatory jail times. Smuggling is viewed by the government as an act of terror – which implies additional penalties.
In New York, a first offense of drug smuggling results in a mandatory 5 year jail sentence. As the offense you’ve done increases, the penalties become severe. Federal courts use a 3 strike rule, which results in a mandatory sentence. Many people who are accused of drug smuggling often get hit with significant financial fines. The amount of the time varies, depending on factors. It can be as high as 5, 10, 15 million – depending on the conviction in place and the severity of your crime. If you are working as a group, the degree of the fine can be worse.
Drug smuggling is a federal crime, and in NY can result in a prison sentence as high as 10-20 years. Drug smuggling is a felony. It’s a serious offense, and the penalties are higher than other forms smuggling. Things like lack of criminal history, the type of goods smuggled, and your character – can have an impact on the sentence. Sentencing in New York is based on a point system – which depends on the nature of the drug, and other variables.
Here are possible defenses
You can argue the drugs didn’t belong to you. If the prosecution can’t prove the drugs were yours, or if you weren’t aware you were carrying them – you can’t be convicted.
If you were not subjected to a lawful search and seizure procedure when arrested – this can be a factor to lower your final sentence.
If the prosecutor on your case cannot produce the drugs involved in the drug smuggling case, then we can try to have the case dismissed. The lack of evidence, is grounds for the case being dismissed.
If law enforcement officials conduct a sting operation, entrapment might occur where a suspect is forced into drug smuggling – which they may not have done ordinarily.
Drugs being planted is another defense. It’s something law enforcement officials avoid doing. In some cases, a lawyer might be able to prove that the drugs were planted on the defendant. If this is possible, then the case against you can be dismissed.
New York has a statute of limitations of 5 years. Once the period has passed, a person cannot be prosecuted as a drug smuggler, or charged with it – unless there conspiracy charges. In the case there are conspiracy charges, the statute resets from the last conspiracy crime.
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