drug-crimes1

Columbus Drug Crime Defense Lawyers

Strong advocacy for anyone charged with drug crimes in Central Ohio

A conviction of even a minor drug offense such as possession of marijuana may result in jail time. Conviction of serious misdemeanor and felony drug crimes may result in prison sentences of years or even decades. The police may search your home, your car, or any of your possessions. If you’re convicted of possession, cultivation, manufacturing, or trafficking in drug crimes – you may lose numerous rights even after your sentence is complete. Drug offenses may include federal charges, state charges, or both.

At Soroka & Associates, LLC, we understand just how frightening any drug charge is. Our Columbus drug crime defense attorneys work aggressively from the moment you contact us until your case is resolved. We represent defendants at each stage including the arrest, bail hearing, preliminary hearings, suppression motions, plea bargain negotiations, and jury trials. We are skilled at cross-examining the police and drug enforcement officials. We’ll argue every defense that can help you obtain a dismissal, acquittal, or plea bargain.

What types of drug offenses do you handle in Columbus?

Our firm handles a broad array of drug charges, including:

  • Possession of marijuana and other drugs and possession of drug paraphernalia
  • Cultivation of marijuana
  • Conspiracy
  • Trafficking
  • Distribution and manufacturing
  • Prescription drug fraud and/or distribution

When are drug charges filed in federal court?

In most cases, federal authorities leave less serious charges to state law enforcement agencies and prosecutors — even when they could choose to exercise jurisdiction under the law. The DEA and federal prosecutors focus on cases involving the trafficking or manufacture of substantial amounts of controlled substances.

All allegations of drug-related crimes are serious, but federal charges have the most potential to affect your life. Federal penalties for drug crimes like trafficking can range from five to 40 years in federal prison and fines of up to $5 million for individuals and $25 million for enterprises.

Federal authorities may also bring related charges, including conspiracy or racketeering, against alleged drug traffickers and people who have aided them. It is essential to work with a lawyer who has extensive experience in a variety of federal criminal matters. Our attorneys can help you understand the allegations and take steps to minimize the consequences of federal drug charges.

What are Controlled Substances?

The federal Controlled Substances Act regulates drugs based on the following factors:

  • Its actual or relative potential for abuse
  • Scientific evidence of its pharmacological effect, if known
  • The state of current scientific knowledge regarding the drug or other substance
  • Its history and current pattern of abuse
  • The scope, duration, and significance of abuse
  • What, if any, risk there is to the public health
  • Its psychic or physiological dependence liability
  • Whether the substance is an immediate precursor of a substance already controlled under this subchapter

Drugs are generally categorized as Schedule I, II, III, IV or V. While all drugs are considered dangerous, Schedule I drugs are considered the most dangerous and Schedule V the least dangerous.

Ohio has its own Controlled Substances Act.

Does Ohio have laws that permit the use of medical or recreational marijuana?

Medical marijuana use in Ohio is legal (with conditions). Recreational use is not currently legal.

Under the law, “Only registered patients can legally consume and possess marijuana in Ohio. Possession is limited to a 45-day supply from a licensed dispensary, though possession of less than 3.5 ounces is considered a minor misdemeanor for all.” The list of conditions approved for medical use includes cancer, glaucoma, and other specific medical disorders. Medical marijuana patients are given certain rights such as certain custody protections.

Ohio does have a November 2022 legalization of marijuana ballot initiative.

What defenses do you assert in drug cases?

You have constitutional rights that protect you from illegal searches and seizures by law enforcement. Many drug-related charges stem from traffic stops where a police officer found drugs either on a person or in the vehicle.

Other defenses include attacking the validity of the police stop, challenging the chain of custody of the drugs, asserting your Miranda rights, lack of intent, statute of limitation arguments, and other defenses.

At Soroka & Associates, our Columbus criminal defense attorneys will investigate the facts of your case to determine whether the police had probable cause to stop your vehicle in the first place. If they did not have probable cause to conduct a search, we may be able to get evidence suppressed or the charges against you dismissed. We have successfully accomplished this in many cases.

Are there alternatives to criminal prosecution for drug charges in Columbus?

Ohio does authorize drug courts for adults, juveniles, and families:

Drug courts are specialized dockets that handle cases involving substance-abusing offenders through supervision, drug and alcohol testing, treatment services, and immediate sanctions and incentives. The majority of people participating in Ohio’s drug courts are heroin/opioid dependent.

Criminal drug courts serve adult offenders under the supervision of common pleas or municipal courts. The goals of criminal drug courts include: ending the cycle of addiction and recidivism, reducing the number of high-risk/high-need addicted offenders in the state prison system, and managing these offenders in their communities where they can continue parenting their children and become tax-paying workers.

Do you have a drug defense lawyer near me?

Soroka & Associates is located at 503 South Front Street, Suite 205 in Columbus. We make in-custody visits, and can schedule phone consultations when necessary.

Experienced Columbus drug defense attorneys on your side

If you suspect that you are being investigated in relation to a federal crime, you very likely are. Waiting to seek legal representation until you have been formally charged may compromise your defense. The best way to protect your rights is to contact an experienced lawyer as soon as possible. Soroka & Associates in and around Columbus and Central Ohio, including in Licking County, Delaware County, Fairfield County, and beyond. Please call 614-358-6525 or fill out our contact form to get started. Our initial consultations are always free.