Allegations of drug crimes are very serious — whether it’s simple possession of marijuana or trafficking large amounts of hard drugs like heroin or cocaine. Georgia drug possession laws judge its violators harshly, punishing offenses as a felony with serious penalties attached.
If you or your loved one is currently facing a drug crime charge, do not take the risk of handling it incorrectly. It is important to enlist the aid of an experienced and professional Austell drug crime lawyer to help you defend against the consequences of being convicted. Protect your freedom and future — our legal team can provide you with the defense you need.
Contact Our Drug Crime Lawyers at the Law Offices of Matthew C. Hines in Austell
To ensure the best representation in your case, you will want a drug crime lawyer experienced in dealing with drug charges in Austell, Georgia, who knows the ins and outs of the court system and how to take it on.
The Law Offices of Matthew C. Hines provide legal representation for people seeking drug crime representation in Austell. Our team has the experience needed to take on a multitude of different cases. When serious legal issues arise, you need to know that your attorney will be committed to helping you and that he or she has the skills and experience required to help you secure the best possible outcome. Turn to the skilled and experienced attorneys of the Law Offices of Matthew C. Hines.
Knowing that the attorney who is handling your legal matter has the knowledge of the law and the commitment to creating effective solutions for you can dramatically reduce the stress and anxiety that such issues typically create. We know that our clients come to us in times of real need, and we work to achieve a solution that allows them to move forward with their lives.
Drug Crimes and Schedule System in Georgia
The main types of drug crimes include:
- Drug possession
- Possession with intent to distribute
- Drug trafficking
- Manufacturing drugs
The most common kind of possession is marijuana, and its treatment in Georgia is different from other drugs. The simple possession of less than one ounce is a misdemeanor, but beyond that it is a felony.
Aside from the type of crime, the type of drug in question also affects the seriousness of the charge. The Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) has formulated a “schedule” system with five categories of drugs according to their potential for abuse. Georgia, like most states, has adopted this system as it allows for more accurate drug regulation, as well as punishment of drug crimes. The schedules are as follows:
- Schedule 1: These are the most serious or dangerous drugs, with a high potential for abuse and no accepted medical use, such as heroin, LSD, psilocybin (mushrooms), MDMA (ecstasy), and marijuana.
- Schedule 2: These drugs are still considered to have a high potential for abuse but are accepted for medical use, such as amphetamine, opium, morphine, codeine, hydrocodone, oxycodone, ketamine, and fentanyl.
- Schedule 3: These drugs have less potential for abuse than Schedule 1 and 2 and are accepted for medical use. The category includes certain central nervous system (CNS) stimulants, CNS depressants, anabolic steroids, and some barbiturates.
- Schedule 4: These drugs have an even lower potential for abuse than Schedule 3, and are accepted for medical use, such as alprazolam (Xanax), clonazepam (Klonopin), diazepam (Valium), and zolpidem (Ambien).
- Schedule 5: These drugs have the lowest potential for abuse and have medical use. Examples are limited quantities of narcotic drugs and other ingredients with medicinal benefits.
Penalties for being convicted of a drug crime in Austell include imprisonment (a minimum of one year and a maximum of 40 years or a lifetime sentence) and fines (ranging from $1,000 to $1 million), depending on the severity. You could also lose your reputation, driver’s license, scholarships or financial aid, and any property used to carry out the crime. If you are facing a charge, contact our experienced drug crime lawyers in Austell to protect you and your future.
Violations of Your Rights in Austell Drug Cases
In a drug case, law enforcement officers commonly violate an individual’s Fourth Amendment rights — the right to be free from unreasonable search and seizure. Typically, they will not be charged for this violation in most cases. However, if you have been subject to a search, you can have a civil claim for a wrongful arrest later.
On the highways of Georgia, officers can pull over a person for reasons unrelated to a drug charge, and then attempt to search their vehicle. They can claim that they smelled something, offer a deal like “I will let you go if you let me search your car,” or even claim later that you consented to the search. It is important to remember that you are never required to consent to these searches, as they may be in violation of your constitutional rights.
We understand your rights against unreasonable searches and seizures, as well as the violations that law enforcement officers commit against those rights. Our team of drug crime attorneys take the time to investigate each case thoroughly to fight against any illegal searches made.
Immigrant Drug Cases
If you are an immigrant, a drug conviction will have additional consequences, such as deportation. A drug crime lawyer that is unaware of immigration laws can give their clients unsound advice, such as pleading guilty to lesser drug charges to avoid harsher penalties. Even if it is a lesser charge, it can still be a deportable offense. Protect yourself by hiring a legal team like us, equipped with the knowledge of criminal defense and immigration law to defend non-citizens from any drug crime allegations.
Get the Assistance of Experienced Austell, GA Drug Crime Lawyers
We can handle various types of drug crime cases, such as:
- Drug Possession
- Drug Trafficking
- Drug Sale
- Drug Manufacturing & Cultivation
- Marijuana Crimes
- Prescription Drug Crimes
- Possession of Drug Paraphernalia
At the Law Offices of Matthew C. Hines, we welcome your questions and want to understand your situation to help you move forward. We can help you combat any drug crime allegations properly and efficiently. Call us at 770-874-9767 or contact us online today for a free case evaluation.