Distribution of Drugs
In Massachusetts, distribution of drugs can be charged as a felony, depending on which type of controlled substance is at issue. There are five different classes of drugs: A, B, C, D, and E. If you are charged with distributing (or possessing with intent to distribute) a controlled substance that falls into class A, B, or C, you can be charged with a felony. While charges related to class D or E substances are misdemeanors, the penalties may still seem harsh. You should retain an experienced Boston drug distribution lawyer if you are charged with any of these offenses, no matter the substance involved. Drug crime attorney Patrick Murphy provides a strong defense to clients charged with narcotics offenses.Charges Based on Distribution of Drugs
Class A drugs are considered the most dangerous drugs, and they include controlled substances like heroin. Class D and class E drugs are considered the least serious drugs, with marijuana counting as a class D drug. You should not assume that being charged with distribution of any of these controlled substances means that you will certainly be convicted. An experienced attorney can look at the facts of your particular case and determine whether any defenses are available. These may include lack of intent, lack of knowledge of the drugs, police entrapment, and constitutional rights violations involving illegal searches and seizures.
In order to arrest you for distribution of drugs, the police need to have probable cause to believe that you actually were involved in a transaction in which you provided someone else with a controlled substance. Generally, possession with intent to distribute drugs involves circumstantial evidence, such as the presence of large quantities of cash or scales. How the police find the evidence to arrest you can make a big difference to your case. For example, if the police find evidence after stopping your car on a hunch, rather than with a reasonable suspicion, it may be possible for a drug distribution attorney in Boston to help you suppress evidence obtained from a search of the car.
To be charged with marijuana distribution, the prosecution will need to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the substance at issue is a class D substance, that you distributed some amount of it to someone else, and that you did so knowingly or intentionally. Under Massachusetts M.G.L. c. 94 s. 32C, anyone who knowingly or intentionally distributes marijuana faces the potential for 2.5 years in jail or a house of correction, a fine of $500 to $5,000, or both. There is no mandatory minimum sentence. The penalties are harsher if you are charged with marijuana distribution a second, third, or fourth time.
Cocaine distribution is considered more serious. Cocaine is a class B controlled substance. Under M.G.L c. 94C s. 32A, you can be convicted if you knowingly or intentionally distribute, dispense, or possess cocaine with intent to distribute. If convicted, you face the possibility of up to 10 years in a state prison, up to 2.5 years in jail or a house of correction, a fine of $1,000 to $10,000, and the suspension of your driver's license. There is a three-year mandatory minimum sentence of imprisonment in state prison for a repeat offense, as well as a fine of $2,500 to $25,000.
Any drug distribution charge will be punished more harshly when the violation occurs in a school or park zone. If you are convicted of drug distribution, the jury is supposed to determine whether the violation occurred within 1,000 feet of a school, preschool, or head start facility or within 100 feet of a public park or playground. It does not matter whether school was in session or whether children were actually in the park at the time of the incident, or whether you knew about how close the school, park, or playground was.Contact an Experienced Drug Distribution Lawyer in Boston
Both state and federal laws prohibit the distribution of controlled substances, and the potential consequences if you are convicted of distribution can be devastating. If you are charged with drug distribution, it is important to retain a resourceful and knowledgeable Boston drug distribution attorney. We can consider the facts of your case and develop a strategy to protect your rights. Call the Law Office of Patrick J. Murphy at (617) 367-0450 or contact us via our online form for a free appointment with a criminal defense lawyer. Patrick Murphy also represents people in Cambridge, Framingham, Lynn, Martha's Vineyard, Medford, Newton, Somerville, Taunton, and other areas of Middlesex, Suffolk, Essex, Barnstable, Hampden, Hampshire, Bristol, and Dukes Counties.