Los Angeles Heroin Crimes Lawyer
Highly addictive and possessing no legitimate medical purposes, heroin and its use, possession, and distribution are strictly prohibited in California. Known for its euphoric effects, heroin comes in many forms and can be intravenously injected, smoked, swallowed, or snorted. Most addicts don't necessarily know what the actual strength of the drug they acquire is, and consequently, overdose and death are common results of habitual heroin use.
Penalties for Conviction of Heroin Crimes in California
Conviction of heroin crimes are dictated by California's personal possession of heroin law, Health and Safety Code 11350 HS. This law prohibits not only the possession of heroin, but the possession of several other drugs including cocaine, GHB, peyote, codeine, Vicodin, certain prescription hallucinogens and other prescription drugs.
If convicted of possession of heroin in the state of California, you expose yourself to a felony conviction, punishable by 16 months to 3 years in California state prison and a fine of up to $20,000. In addition, a simple personal possession of heroin conviction may entitle a defendant to participation in a California drug diversion program instead of a prison sentence. Drug programs that heroin possession convictions may entitle you to include Proposition 36 as well as programs designated under Penal Code 1000 or other California drug court provisions.
If convicted of California's "possession or purchase of heroin for sale law (Health and Safety Code 11351 HS), you'll face more serious penalties than for possession. A violation of HC 11351 could result in a felony conviction, punishable with between 2 and 4 years of jail time and fines upward of $20,000. Additional penalties for possession or purchase that exceeds one kilogram in weight can add three to twenty-five years to your sentence and fines of up to $8,000,000; consequently, admittance into an alternative drug diversion program becomes more difficult to procure.
HC 11352 governs the transport or selling of heroin, which could result in up to nine years of prison time if you transport the substance across more than two county lines, with the possibility of the addition of prison time and a fine of $50,000 if the amount of heroin you transport exceeds 14.25 grams.
A heroin misdemeanor, being under the influence of heroin, subjects you to from 90 days to 1 year in county jail, fines, or participation in a drug diversion program. However, if you are arrested for DWI for heroin, the same penalties apply except you won't be eligible for the alternative drug diversion programs.
Legal Defenses for Heroin Crimes in California
The exact legal defenses available to you upon charge of a heroin crime vary dependent on the exact nature of the charge against you. However, there are a few common challenges that are often used by defense attorneys in heroin cases that might include:
- Law enforcement's violation of California's search and seizure laws.
- The absence of intent to sell of the heroin possessed; it was for personal use.
- The heroin belonged to someone else.
- Police misconduct (planted evidence, fabricated evidence).
- A forced confession.
- Use of excessive force by law enforcement to seize the heroin.
R.J. Manuelian is an Experienced Heroin Defense Lawyer in California with a Solid Track Record for Positive Resolutions to Heroin Cases
The highly addictive nature of heroin makes crimes involving the substance particularly appealing to try for California prosecutors. Consequently, if you are arrested or charged with a heroin crime (possession, intent to sell, distribution, or transportation), you need to make sure that you engage legal representation with a heroin crime defense defense attorney who has a solid track record of positive resolutions for heroin crime cases. R.J. Manuelian has the experience and track record you want when faced with the defense of a heroin crime. Contact him today for a free consultation concerning your criminal defense case.