Former New Jersey Prosecutors Provide Strong Drug Crime Defense
Camden County firm represents individuals accused of controlled dangerous substance crimes
Changes in New Jersey’s drug laws may create the misimpression that the state no longer imposes severe penalties on individuals convicted of drug crimes. However, it is essential to recognize that this is not the case. At Lackey & Miller, LLC, located in Cherry Hill, our attorneys are former prosecutors who fully comprehend the gravity of drug crime convictions and the serious consequences they entail. Our attorneys are well-versed in the most effective approaches to attack the way evidence was obtained and counter any unwarranted allegations. Whether you are facing charges related to the illegal possession, sale or manufacture of drugs, the attorneys at our firm will examine all the relevant facts and circumstances surrounding your situation and work tirelessly to secure the best possible outcome for your case.
Firm handles drug possession, distribution and manufacturing cases
Specific criminal charges associated with illegal drugs include:
- Unlawful Possession of a Controlled Dangerous Substance (N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10) — Being caught in possession of most illegal drugs or prescription medications without proper authorization is a third-degree crime in New Jersey, which carries a potential penalty of three to five years of imprisonment upon conviction. The key to mitigating such drastic consequences begins with promptly seeking the guidance of a qualified criminal defense attorney. Not all drug cases need to result in incarceration. In certain cases, there can be pre-trial intervention, probation, or programs such as Recovery Court (Drug Court) that can offer an alternative approach focused on treatment rather than incarceration.
- Possession with Intent to Distribute (N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5) — When law enforcement discovers a quantity of drugs that exceeds what is typically associated with personal use or uncovers evidence suggesting that a person intended to sell the controlled dangerous substances, the potential consequences become significantly more serious. A conviction for possession with intent to distribute can result in a lengthy prison term and carry a substantial fine that may reach figures ranging from five to six digits. Depending on the amount and type of controlled dangerous substance, a person could be charged with a third-degree, second-degree or even first-degree distribution offense.
- Maintaining a CDS Production Facility (N.J.S.A. 2C:35-4) — Maintaining a production facility is a first-degree crime, which carries a potential sentence of ten to twenty years of imprisonment upon conviction. However, there are some defenses to this very significant charge. In some instances, items used as evidence against you to support a prosecution for maintaining a production facility, such as a kitchen scale or plastic bags, may have legitimate noncriminal uses, or the search of a residence by law enforcement could also have been unlawful. With such serious consequences, anyone charged with a first-degree crime needs experienced criminal defense attorneys who will push back against the evidence and work tirelessly to protect your rights.
- Distributing CDS on or Near Certain Public Property (N.J.S.A. 2C:35-7.1) — New Jersey is a densely populated state with many public parks, housing facilities, and public buildings such as libraries or museums. Distributing CDS within 500 feet of these public areas is a second-degree crime, which carries a potential penalty of five to ten years imprisonment upon conviction.
- Distributing CDS on or Near School Property (N.J.S.A. 2C:35-7) — Being charged with selling or distributing a controlled dangerous substance on or near 1,000 feet of school property is a very serious offense and the potential for a jail sentence is real. This is a third-degree crime, which carries a potential penalty of three to five years of mandatory imprisonment upon conviction unless there is a negotiated plea agreement with the prosecutor and the mandatory jail sentence is waived. Without a knowledgeable criminal defense attorney who understands the laws, you could end up serving a prison sentence of three to five years upon conviction.
- Strict Liability for Drug Induced Deaths (N.J.S.A. 2C:35-9) —This first-degree crime carries the potential for a substantial prison sentence, ranging from ten to twenty years, and falls under the provision of the No Early Release Act, meaning that a significant portion of the sentence must be served before parole eligibility. Unlike most other crimes, where there the State must prove intent, this crime does not require the State to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the dealer intended to cause the death of the ultimate user. The law holds the dealer strictly liable for the death resulting from the drugs distributed. These cases are extremely complex and challenging, and often require the expertise of various professionals to present evidence and testimony. As a former prosecutor, Mr. Lackey brings a wealth of experience in prosecuting numerous drug-induced death cases. This unique background has equipped him with a deep understanding of the intricacies involved in such cases. As a defense attorney, Mr. Lackey utilizes this extensive knowledge to mount a strong defense against drug-induced death charges and challenge the prosecution’s case.
Criminal defense attorneys with experience handling drug crimes
At our firm, we recognize the vital role that drugs seized from a defendant’s person, car, or home play in the prosecution’s case. Unfortunately, law enforcement can sometimes act overzealously when they suspect someone is in possession of a controlled dangerous substance and will ask for consent to search or just conduct a search before receiving a search warrant from a judge or having a valid exception to search. As case law evolves with new Supreme Court and Appellate Division decisions published almost monthly, it is crucial to stay updated on the latest developments that may impact your case. Our seasoned criminal defense attorneys are well-versed in these ever-changing legal landscapes. We conduct meticulous review of the events leading to your arrest and assess whether there is a possibility to exclude the seized evidence due to illegal search and seizure practices by the arresting or searching officers.
Contact a South Jersey drug crime defense lawyer for a consultation
Lackey & Miller, LLC, located in Cherry Hill advocates for Camden County, Burlington County, Gloucester County and South Jersey area residents charged with all types of drug-related offenses. Please call 856-399-0089 or contact us online to discuss your matter with a qualified attorney.