Have you or someone you know been arrested for the possession of drugs? If so, our drug crime lawyer in Fairfax VA from May Law, LLP may be able to help you. We have extensive experience representing defendants in drug related cases. We understand the incredible stress that this situation can cause someone and their family. We handle each and every case with compassion and understanding for our client. Our drug crime lawyer in Fairfax VA remains current on all applicable laws and pending legislation. At May Law, LLP, we are passionate about protecting a citizen’s rights under the Fourth Amendment. If a law enforcement officer violates our client’s right to due process of the law, including lawful search and seizure procedures that may lead to an arrest, we will vigorously defend them.
The Possible Repercussions of a Criminal Conviction for Drugs
In the wake of an arrest that involves drug possession, your relationships and job may be negatively impacted. The possibility of a conviction can feel overwhelming and you may have many more questions than answers. Our drug crime lawyer in Fairfax VA from May Law, LLP understands. Many of our clients had no criminal history, while others have had previous convictions on similar charges. Regardless of your circumstances, you can feel confident that you will receive quality legal representation from your lawyer at our firm. A conviction can carry hefty fines, jail time and drug treatment or rehab. In addition, the court process can be grueling. We are passionate and dedicated in our commitment to protect you at every turn.
There is a long-standing stigma and prejudice against those who have been arrested with drugs. In fact, the prison system is overrun with people who have been arrested on drug charges. Many are first offenders. Many had poor legal representation. You have one very important decision to make; who will you choose to represent you? In choosing an experienced drug crime lawyer in Fairfax VA from May Law, LLP, you may avoid a conviction. Every aspect of your case will be considered, and each factor will be considered as your lawyer develops your defense strategy. Factors might include:
- The type of drug that was illegally in your possession.
- The quantity of the drug.
- The manner in which the drugs were confiscated. For example, were your rights under the Fourth Amendment respected?
Additionally, the level of charges you face may have the following consequences if you are convicted:
- A misdemeanor charge which is punishable by one year in prison or less.
- A felony charge which is punishable by one year in prison or more.
Quality Legal Services You Can Depend Upon
When you contact our drug crime lawyer in Fairfax VA from May Law, LLP, you will take the first step to lifting that weight off your shoulders with the knowledge you are not alone. We can protect your rights throughout the criminal justice process. It may be possible to get your charge reduced or dismissed entirely.
Drug laws in Virginia are some of the harshest in the United States. Many drug cases in Virginia include potential felony charges. Even a drug case in Virginia involving marijuana is punishable with a misdemeanor charge, hefty fines, jail time, and even loss of driving privileges. If you find yourself facing a drug charge in Virginia, contacting a drug crime lawyer Fairfax VA is the best way to help mitigate damage and defend yourself. However, as a drug crime lawyer Fairfax VA knows, avoiding unnecessary drug charges altogether is the first and most efficient line of defense for any citizen.
One of the tactics law enforcement might use to get a drug charge in Virginia is the use of vague questions or statements to put you in a position of incriminating yourself. As a drug crime lawyer Fairfax VA, we have seen this with our own clients. Law enforcement may approach a citizen in or around a vehicle and use open-ended phrases, such as, “where is it?” or “I saw it,” or “I know you have it.” If you respond to such inquiries, you might unintentionally admit something that the officer can use against you for a drug charge in Virginia. Avoid self-incrimination by being respectful but unwavering. If you do incriminate yourself, or your vehicle is searched and a substance is found, call a drug crime lawyer Fairfax VA immediately. Depending upon the circumstances, a drug crime lawyer Fairfax VA may be able to challenge whether any substances found can be used as evidence against you in court.
A key term that might come into play in a drug crime case is “probable cause.” A drug crime lawyer Fairfax VA knows this concept concerns whether law enforcement has justification to search your home or vehicle. In Virginia, marijuana odor CAN establish probable cause. In the court case Bunch v. Commonwealth, 51 Va. App. 491 (2008), the “plain smell doctrine” became the operating policy for law enforcement. This means that the “detection of distinctive odors” can be used as probable cause in Virginia Id. at 496 (quoting United States v. Haynie, 637 F.2d 227, 234 (4th Cir. 1980). If a law enforcement officer smells marijuana, and they’re able to trace the source to an individual, the officer has probable cause in Virginia to assume that individual is breaking the law by possessing marijuana.
It is important to keep in mind that this article is not the be-all-end-all of drug laws in Virginia, but just one small example of a few different situations in which you may find yourself. There are many nuances to drug laws, including (but not limited to) the different classifications for different drugs in Virginia, possession vs dealing in Virginia, and the location of the drug offense in Virginia. There is also the fact that laws are constantly evolving and changing. It can be difficult to keep up with so many different laws and policies, which is why it is important to hire a drug crime lawyer Fairfax VA if you find yourself facing drug charges in Virginia. As a top drug crime lawyer Fairfax VA, our single, greatest piece of advice to avoid drug charges in Virginia is easy to remember: know the law, and follow the law! And when in doubt, call a lawyer at May Law, LLP today.
Marijuana Criminal Charges
Did you know that even if medical or marijuana for recreational use is legal in your state, it is still a federal crime to possess, buy, or even sell the substance? Even though the laws in many states have changed to legalize the use of marijuana, federal laws still consider marijuana a controlled substance, as is heroin or cocaine.
It is possible to be charged with a federal crime even though you are using marijuana in a state where it is legal to do so? Federal agencies are not likely to charge you, however, you do need to be aware of the federal marijuana laws and how they may impact decisions you make every day in your life.
What are Federal Marijuana Laws?
The Controlled Substance Act or CSA is the agency that regulates and classifies illegal substances and rates the drugs according to the likelihood the drug is to be abused and if it has any medicinal worth.
According to the CSA, marijuana is listed as a Schedule I controlled substance. A Schedule I means that the drug has the potential for being abused, does not contain any medical value, and doctors cannot prescribe marijuana for medical use. That means if you grow, market, or distribute marijuana you could be in violation of several federal laws. These laws are less likely to be enforced if you live in a state where marijuana is legal.
You can get into trouble even if you are indirectly involved with the marijuana business. If your business provides a service for a business that involves the legal use of marijuana in that state, you could still be in violation of federal laws and you may be prosecuted. For example, if you are a contractor doing work on a building where marijuana is sold legally in the state, according to Federal law you may be accused of making money at the expense of illegal drug trafficking.
Federal prosecutors have lifted a lot of the restrictions in states where marijuana is legal as long as state laws are followed and there is no selling across state lines.
How Federal Marijuana Laws Can Cause Problems Even in States Where it is Legal
Even as new evidence appears that medical marijuana does have health benefits, doctors are not able to legally prescribe marijuana to their patients because federally it is considered a Schedule I drug according to the CSA. A physician could lose their license and could be prosecuted further federally. Drug crime lawyer in Fairfax, VA have to refrain from offering advice to clients concerning the marijuana business because they will be telling their clients how to go against federal law.
Other areas where your life can be affected by the use or possession of marijuana in a legal state is:
- Housing — you can be evicted for using marijuana in your home if your lease prohibits the use of illegal drugs. A landlord has the right to prohibit the drug because of the federal laws
- Right to Bear Arms — You may be banned from owning a firearm if you have a medical marijuana card.
A federal drug charge is a big deal. Contact a Fairfax, VA drug crime lawyer experienced in drug crimes if you are facing charges concerning marijuana use or possession. Your drug crime lawyer in Fairfax, VA can help you understand your rights and explain the laws in your state.
“Erick is a wonderful layer, and was able to answer all the questions I had. He was also able to tell me what to except on my court date. Erick made sure I understood all the options that were available to me. He helped get the best possible outcome for my case. I would strongly recommend Erick. “