If you are under investigation or have been charged with a drug crime in the state of Tennessee, then you are entitled to the best possible criminal defense. Each case is unique and several potential defenses can be used to reduce or eliminate the charges entirely. It’s up to you to seek out a professional Lebanon drug crimes defense lawyer who can help manage your case as best as possible.
Our criminal defense attorneys at Nash Law have been helping clients like yourself for more than a decade. We are heavily involved in the Lebanon community and want to ensure that all of its citizens receive the legal defense that they deserve. Our goals include helping limit jail time as well as the overall damage to your record. Pick up the phone and call our office today at 615-627-4529 for a completely free case evaluation.
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Types of Drug Crimes
Some of the types of drug charges in Tennessee include:
Simple possession is a misdemeanor in the state of Tennessee with charges that can range from a minor fine to a full year in jail. It requires an individual to have a small amount of an illegal substance either on their person or somewhere on their property. It also requires that the individual was aware of the illegal substance’s existence. For marijuana, the amount must be less than ½ of an ounce.
Possession with Intent to Distribute
If you are found with a large quantity of an illegal substance, then it is very likely you will be charged with possession with intent to distribute. The courts believe that any large amount of a particular drug will be used for more than just recreational purposes. You are also more likely to be charged with this crime if the drugs are packaged or found alongside items like cash, scales, or bags.
Many prescription medications that are prescribed by doctors are classified as controlled substances. There are numerous laws that target the illegal use or acquisition of these drugs. For example, attempting to acquire a prescription drug by misrepresenting yourself, fraudulent activity, or by forging documents are all classified as forms of prescription fraud.
Cultivation / Manufacturing
Several laws exist to prohibit the cultivation of marijuana or the manufacturing of controlled substances. Growing marijuana for recreational purposes is now legal in many states, but it remains a serious crime in Tennessee. The cultivation of marijuana is still considered a felony and can result in large fines and several years in prison. The severity of the charges is linked to the quantity of the plants or the controlled substance being manufactured.
The transportation of drugs is considered a more serious offense than simple possession, though both crimes are very similar. Transportation can involve moving any controlled substance from one location to another regardless of the distance. If the drugs are transported across state borders, then it may be charged as a federal crime with a more severe penalty.
Anyone who is involved with the manufacturing, transportation, or selling of a controlled substance may be charged with drug trafficking. It is a broad charge with the potential for very harsh punishments. Trafficking may also be brought as a federal charge if the drugs were sold across state borders.
Drugs & DUI
If you are found operating a vehicle while under the influence of a controlled substance, then you may be facing a stiff DUI charge. The severity of the charges can increase drastically if damage to property, pedestrians, or other motorists occurs. If you are found guilty of a DUI, you may lose your license and face time in prison. It’s crucial that you seek out the best possible Lebanon drug crimes defense lawyer during this time.
Penalties for Drug Crimes in Tennessee
The penalties can vary according to the illegal substance involved, its quantity, and the number of different charges involved. If it is your first offense, then the penalties are likely to be less severe. A Lebanon drug crimes defense lawyer will fight for reduced penalties. Common examples of penalties for drug crimes in Tennessee include:
- Loss of license
- Loss of property
Misdemeanor vs Felony Drug Charges in Tennessee
Several drug crimes may be classified as a misdemeanor if it is your first offense. For example, a simple possession charge is always a misdemeanor if it is your first offense. This charge can involve up to one year in jail and a fine as high as $2,500. However, possession with the intent to sell is classified as a felony. Drug trafficking is also considered a felony charge in Tennessee.
Can I Have a Drug Conviction Expunged in Tennessee?
It is possible to have some felony drug charges expunged in the state of Tennessee. This depends entirely on the particular crime and its severity. The manufacturing, delivery, sale, or possession of marijuana between ½ ounce and 10 pounds can be expunged. The same applies for the sale or possession of Schedule V and Schedule VII drugs as long as the fine remains below $5,000 and $1,000 respectively.
Possible Defenses in Drug Crime Cases
Our experienced attorneys will know the best defense strategy for your particular case. Some common defenses against drug charges include:
Illegal Search & Seizure
The Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution prevents law enforcement agencies from searching your property without probable cause. This is a common problem in Tennessee with zealous officers who are eager to make an arrest. If the police did not have probable cause, a warrant, or your permission, then they do not have a right to search your home or vehicle.
Determining Ownership of Drugs
Police may find illegal drugs on your property that do not belong to you. Tennessee law clearly states that you must own or be aware of the drug’s existence. If the police find drugs that belong to a third party and you were not aware of their presence, then you have a strong legal defense.
How Much Will Hiring a Lebanon Drug Crimes Defense Lawyer Cost?
Drug crime attorneys generally offer free case evaluations and then charge an hourly rate for the time spent working on the case. The average hourly rate ranges from $100 to $300. You may also be able to negotiate a flat rate payment in certain cases.
Contact Nash Law Today for a Free Consultation
A drug charge can have lasting consequences that will affect you for the rest of your life. You can fight back against these charges and protect your future with the help of a professional drug crime attorney. You may even be able to have the charges dismissed entirely if the authorities did not have the legal right to search your property. Contact Nash Law today at 615-627-4529 to discuss your options.