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Drug Trafficking Charges

In the “War on Drugs,” drug traffickers are the top target. The government sees shutting down drug traffickers as shutting down supply. Penalties for drug trafficking are therefore among the most harsh among drug offenses, with mandatory minimum sentences.

The state of Alabama takes trafficking very seriously, reserving some of the harshest punishments on the books for those convicted of trafficking. If you've been charged with drug trafficking, you'll want the strongest defense an experienced criminal defense attorney can muster.

Huntsville Drug Trafficking Lawyer

Law Offices Of Segal & Segal can fight your charges. We'll look for every hole in the prosecution's case and every misstep law enforcement made when gathering evidence and use them to seek to get your charges reduced or dismissed. We will diligently review every aspect of your case and will argue your case in front of a jury if you plead “not guilty.” Call us today at (256) 533-4529 or send an online message for a free consultation to discuss your Huntsville-area trafficking charge with one of our attorneys.

At Law Offices Of Segal & Segal, we have an understanding of the criminal process from all sides. We've served as prosecutors. Andrew Segal is a former prosecutor with the Alabama Attorney General's Office and the Madison County District Attorney's Office, and Sandra Segal is a former prosecutor for the Huntsville City Attorney's Office. We know how prosecutors operate, because we've been there, and we can put that knowledge to work for you. Furthermore, we practice with honor and integrity, earning the respect of judges, jurors and even prosecutors. That can make a big difference when we're arguing your case to the jury or negotiating with prosecutors to reduce your charges.

If you've been charged with drug trafficking anywhere in the Huntsville-Decatur area, including in Madison, Morgan, Marshall, Limestone or Jackson County, our drug trafficking attorneys can represent you. We can also represent you if you've been charged in federal court for drug trafficking.


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Alabama Drug Trafficking Information Center


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Defining Drug Trafficking in Alabama

Trafficking is commonly thought of as the act of transporting illegal substances. It is a charge meant to go after the people in charge of narcotics commerce. The kingpins of the industry. Those who are either cultivating or manufacturing drugs in mass quantities and moving it into the illegal market, or who are transporting it from other countries where it is grown or produced and onto the streets here. The targets who are presumably making the most money.

However, the way the law is written creates a much looser standard for what constitutes trafficking. Alabama Code Section 13A-12-231 defines trafficking as selling, manufacturing, delivering, bringing into the state or even merely possessing certain significant quantities of narcotics. For instance, merely possessing 2.2 pounds of marijuana could lead to a trafficking charge, even if a user merely had a very large stash.


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Penalties for Drug Trafficking

All trafficking charges are Class A felonies. That would usually mean a range of sentencing of 10 to 99 years or life, and a fine up to $60,000. However, for trafficking, Alabama sets mandatory minimum sentencing, so you're sure to have a significant penalty.

Penalties for trafficking depend on the type of substance and the amount alleged to have been in your possession.  If the amount in possession is less than the amount listed, the charge is downgraded to simple possession, distribution or manufacturing.

Marijuana

Amount (Pounds)

Minimum Prison Time (Years)

Minimum Fine

2.2 – 100

3

$25,000

100 – 500

5

$50,000

500 – 1,000

15

$200,000

1,000 or more

Life without parole

None

Cocaine, MDA/MDMA/Ecstasy, Amphetamines, Meth

Amount (Grams/Kilograms)

Minimum Prison Time (Years)

Minimum Fine

28 g – 500 g

3

$50,000

500 g – 1 kg

5

$100,000

1 kg – 10 kg

15

$250,000

10 kg or more

Life without parole

None

Morphine/Opium/Heroin, LSD

Amount (Grams)

Minimum Prison Time (Years)

Minimum Fine

4 – 14

3

$50,000

14 – 28

10

$100,000

28 – 56

25

$500,000

56 or more

Life without parole

None

Methaqualone (Quaaludes)

Amount (Capsules)

Minimum Prison Time (Years)

Minimum Fine

1,000 – 5,000

3

$50,000

5,000 – 25,000

10

$100,000

25,000 – 100,000

25

$500,000

100,000 or more

Life without parole

None

Hydromorphone

Amount (Pills)

Minimum Prison Time (Years)

Minimum Fine

500 – 1,000

3

$50,000

1,000 – 4,000

10

$100,000

4,000 – 10,000

25

$500,000

10,000 or more

Life without parole

None

PCP

Amount (Grams)

Minimum Prison Time (Years)

Minimum Fine

4 – 14

3

$50,000

14 – 28

5

$100,000

28 – 56

15

$500,000

56 or more

Life without parole

None

If charged with trafficking, you are ineligible for drug court programs.


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Defenses for Individuals Charged with Drug Trafficking

Trafficking is a major charge, and prosecutors are likely to take charges very seriously and pursue them particularly aggressively. They may even consider this type of case “taking out a drug kingpin.”

The prosecutors have to prove every element of their case “beyond a reasonable doubt,” a tough standard to meet. It basically means that the prosecution must prove that, other than some far-fetched or highly improbable scenario, that what they say happened actually happened. In the case of trafficking, the question may be whether you were legally in possession. Possession doesn't have to mean on your actual person. Prosecutors can argue “constructive possession,” meaning they were in a place under your control. Sometimes, prosecutors can take that too far.

They may argue, for example, that a large supply of drugs found in a building on property you own but don't regularly maintain constitutes constructive possession.

Another question may be the amount. If the prosecution can't prove you possessed 2.2 pounds of marijuana rather than 2.19 pounds, it could change the charges from trafficking to possession. Even possession with intent to distribute is a lesser charge carrying significantly reduced penalties. Your best defense depends the very specific circumstances of your case. An experienced attorney can look at those specific and help you build your defense.

Additionally, the police must follow strict procedure when gathering evidence, or risk violating your Fourth Amendment rights. If they fail to meet those standards, any evidence they found as a result of an illegal search may be thrown out.


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Providing Defense Options for Drug Trafficking Charges in Huntsville

If you've been charged, you face serious minimum penalties, and you need a serious defense. The dedicated team at Law Offices Of Segal & Segal will fight for your rights. We can represent clients charged with trafficking throughout the Huntsville area, including Decatur, Madison, Athens and Albertville. Call us today at (256) 533-4529 or send an online message for a free consultation to go over your charges.

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