A conviction of drug distribution charges in Virginia carries significant penalties that can forever impact a person’s life. Depending on the type of drug involved and other factors, a person convicted of drug distribution could go to prison for life. However, a conviction can result in life-long consequences even without a lifetime prison sentence, including difficulty finding a job or securing a loan to buy a home. If you have been accused of drug distribution in Virginia, it’s crucial to speak to an experienced attorney who can assemble a solid defense against the charges.
The knowledgeable drug defense attorneys at Whitestone Young, PC, have significant experience fighting for the rights of people facing drug distribution charges in Virginia. We are deeply familiar with state and local laws and can use our skills and resources to have your charges reduced or dropped. Here, we define drug distribution and explain some top defenses to these charges.
How Does Virginia Define Drug Distribution?
Knowing how the law defines a particular offense is crucial to crafting a solid defense strategy. Under the Code of Virginia, it is illegal for anyone in the state to sell, manufacture, distribute, or possess a controlled substance with the intent to manufacture, sell, or distribute it. Drug distribution is always a felony charge, though the type of felony and the potential penalties vary depending on the particular drug, how much of the drug the defendant allegedly possessed, and the defendant’s prior criminal history. Depending on specific factors, a drug distribution conviction can carry penalties of five years to life in prison and fines of up to $1 million.
5 Defense Strategies for Virginia Drug Distribution Charges
Because every drug distribution case is unique, an attorney will choose a defense strategy based on the specifics of the case. However, these are five defense strategies that are commonly used against Virginia drug distribution charges:
- The search or seizure was illegal – If law enforcement officers did not follow the correct procedures during your arrest, you could argue that your constitutional rights were violated and that any evidence obtained illegally should be excluded from your case.
- The drugs were not in your possession – You could argue that the drugs were not in your possession at the time of your arrest or that they belonged to another person.
- There was no intent to distribute – Under Virginia’s “accommodation” doctrine, a person can argue that they merely procured drugs for another individual, such as a friend, without the intent to profit or make the individual addicted.
- Law enforcement used entrapment – If law enforcement induced you to engage in a criminal act that you otherwise would not have committed, you could use entrapment as a defense.
- You are a first-time offender – You might qualify for Virginia’s first-offender program if you are facing drug charges for the first time and have not previously participated in the program.
Contact the Fairfax, VA, Drug Crime Attorneys at Whitestone Young, PC
If you are facing drug distribution charges in Virginia, you might feel unsure of what to do next. You don’t have to go through this challenging time alone. Remember that you have rights, and the prosecution must prove you are guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. An experienced defense attorney from Whitestone Young, PC, can review your case and develop a robust defense strategy to fight for you. With over 40 years of experience serving clients in the community, we have the skills and resources to take on even the most complex drug crime cases. Call us at (703) 591-0200 or visit our contact page for a consultation.