5 Activities That Can Lead to Federal Drug Trafficking Charges
Criminal charges related to controlled substances can be very serious. Those accused of possessing, selling, or distributing these substances may be charged with drug crimes, and they may face harsh penalties if convicted. While many drug crimes are charged at the state level, there are some situations where people involved in these cases may face federal drug trafficking charges. By understanding the activities that could potentially lead to federal charges and working with an attorney who has experience defending clients in federal courts, alleged offenders can take steps to defend themselves.
Actions and Offenses Related to Drug Trafficking
The laws of the United States make it illegal to distribute, manufacture, or possess with the intent to distribute or manufacture controlled substances. There are a number of reasons people may be accused of violating these laws, including:
Manufacturing or producing illegal drugs - Federal charges may be related to the operation of labs or other facilities where controlled substances are produced, compounded, or packaged. These cases often involve substances such as methamphetamines or fentanyl, and possession of large amounts of chemicals that may be used to manufacture these or other controlled substances may lead to drug trafficking charges.
Distribution or sale of illegal drugs - Actions involving the transfer of controlled substances from one party to another will generally be considered distribution. Directly selling drugs to large numbers of users may result in federal charges. Giving drugs to others to be transported to a new location or distributing substances to those who will then go on to sell them to others may also be considered a federal offense, especially in cases involving large quantities of drugs.
Transporting drugs across state lines or international borders - Federal law prohibits the interstate or international transportation of controlled substances. This includes smuggling drugs into or out of the United States or delivering drugs to people in multiple states. Because multiple jurisdictions will be affected by these activities, the federal government may investigate and prosecute people who are allegedly involved in large-scale drug trafficking.
Money laundering - Drug trafficking may yield large sums of money that may indicate that a person has engaged in illegal activities. Money laundering is the process of making illegally obtained money appear legitimate. In some cases, a person may be accused of hiding the proceeds of drug trafficking in legitimate businesses or investments or using complex financial transactions to conceal the source of funds. Those who are accused of these offenses may also face drug trafficking charges based on their participation in schemes to manufacture or distribute controlled substances.
Drug conspiracy - Even if a person was not directly involved in the manufacturing or distribution of controlled substances, they could face federal charges based on their participation in these schemes. Conspiracies may involve plans between two or more people to engage in drug trafficking offenses, including transporting, distributing, manufacturing, or selling illegal drugs. Anyone who played a role in the chain of distribution, including those who financed drug trafficking schemes or handled money gained from drug trafficking, could be charged with federal crimes.
Contact Our Plano Federal Drug Crimes Defense Lawyers
Anyone who has been accused of being involved in drug trafficking will need to be aware that they could face federal charges, and if they are convicted, they may be sentenced to multiple years in prison and be required to pay tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines. At The Crowder Law Firm, P.C., our Fort Worth federal drug charges attorneys can provide legal representation in these situations, helping alleged offenders determine the best approach to take during a federal case. Contact our firm at 214-303-9600 to set up a free consultation today.