California is known for a liberal policy on drugs and drug possession, but that is not always the case. Manydrug possession cases are charged as felonies. And when it comes to selling, growing, manufacturing or transporting drugs, the penalties are massive.
Fortunately, under Health & Safety Code 11350, drug diversion is an option for many cases that involve only drug possession.
In cases involving the alleged sale of drugs, much of the case will hinge on the question of whether the prosecution can show “intent to sell,” which is difficult to prove, absent a sting operation. When a suspect is arrested, California police look for evidence of intent to sell. Such evidence might include:
Relatively large quantity of drug(s)
Large amounts of cash
Plastic baggies or other separate containers
Multiple cellular phones
Fertilizer, pots, soil
This evidence can be aggressively challenged. After a thorough investigation, we often find that California police:
make mistakes, exaggerate or lie in their police reports
make arrests despite lacking solid evidence
violate suspects Constitution right to be protected from illegal searches and seizures
obtain warrants based on faulty or trumped up evidence
violate California law against entrapment
make use of “informants” of dubious reliability
The key in drug cases is to chop away at the evidence and assumptions one by one. There is much that can be done to get your case dismissed. For example, often it turns out that the police illegally searched you. When that’s the case, your attorney can make a suppression motion and ask the court to show out the illegally obtained evidence. If the judge agrees, your case will likely be thrown out thanks to the motion to suppress.
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