A Baltimore man, 26 years old, received a 12-year prison sentence on charges of conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance. He will also have 4 years of supervision after his release from prison.
Announcing the sentence was the District of Maryland US Attorney, the Drug Enforcement Administration Assistant Special Agent in Charge, the Baltimore Police Commissioner and the State's Attorney for Baltimore City. In addition to a lengthy incarceration, the US District Judge also ordered the man to forfeit more than $58,000 that was seized as a result of a warranted search that took place in December 2012.
The man charged had entered a plea agreement describing his alleged illegal activity from July 2012 to December 2012. Those activities reportedly included giving instructions to co-conspirators regarding the storage practices and preparation of heroin as well as offering suggestions on how to collect money received through the distribution of the drug. Reports also say that the man was engaged in distributing heroin.
Drug crimes can carry very heavy penalties. Several agencies may be involved in gathering information and putting together a case to take to court, and they may be given the ability to search a person's vehicle and property if they are able to gather enough cause to be granted a warrant from a judge. However, the laws are specific and complex where the invasion of a person's privacy is concerned.
In order to defend a client from charges similar to those against the man convicted in the case above, a criminal defense lawyer may question the procedures followed by the authorities to obtain the warrant and during their search. If legally proper procedures have not been followed throughout the process, an attorney can ask for a reduction of sentence or dismissal of the charges.
Source: Baltimore News Journal, "Baltimore heroin trafficker sentenced to 12 years in prison", December 05, 2013