An arrest and conviction for a possession-based drug crime can change the course of an Illinois resident’s life. They may see their educational or career aspirations disappear before their eyes or they may be forced to endure stresses and strain on their family and personal relationships as they suffer the weight of their criminal legal dilemmas. However, in some cases, a criminal defendant facing possession-based drug crimes may be able to present certain defenses at trial that can force prosecutors to reduce or drop the charges.
One of the defense strategies that can work when facing possession charges is demonstrating the mistakes that were made during the seizure of the drugs from the defendant or during the analysis of those drugs after they were taken. Citizens of the United States are guaranteed certain protections under the Constitution. Under the Fourth Amendment they are protected from unreasonable searches and seizures of their property by law enforcement officials. Police officers who do not conform their actions to the scope of the Fourth Amendment may not be able to use illegally seized drugs during the prosecution of drug crimes.
Additionally, once alleged drugs are taken from a criminal defendant and subjected to testing prior to trial, it may become known that the substances taken were in fact not drugs and actually substances that the defendant was legally in the right to possess. A drug testing lab may also lose or misplace alleged drugs for a criminal trial and if a prosecutor is unable to provide the court with the actual drugs seized from the defendant they may have to drop the charges.
Entrapment, innocence and a host of other defenses may exist for drug possession charges. As all legal cases differ significantly in their circumstances and facts, our readers will need to get more information about their defense strategies and how they may be able to take on their pending drug charges.