Being charged with any drug-related offense in Louisiana can have significant consequences. You’ll have to pay substantial fines, serve a long sentence, and have a permanent criminal record that can impact your future opportunities. If you were accused of drug conspiracy charges in Louisiana, you may wonder whether it’s possible to beat these charges.
It can be very overwhelming to fight drug conspiracy charges by yourself. Therefore, the best way to beat a Louisiana drug conspiracy charge is to have a good defense. The skilled drug defense attorneys from John D. & Eric G. Johnson Law Firm are here to explain how to beat drug conspiracy charges in Louisiana and help you mitigate any charges that may be against you.
What Is a Drug Conspiracy Charge in Louisiana?
A drug conspiracy charge in Louisiana is an agreement between two or more people to commit a drug crime. These charges are broad and could encompass various drug crimes such as drug manufacturing, trafficking, possession, and distribution. To be convicted of a drug conspiracy charge, the prosecutor will be required to prove that:
- There was an agreement between two or more people to violate a federal drug law
- Each alleged conspirator knew of the unlawful agreement and joined in it
The primary element of a drug conspiracy charge is the agreement. The prosecutor doesn’t have to prove that you knew all the details of the conspiracy, and you’ll also be prosecuted irrespective of whether or not the conspired drug crime was ever carried out.
Consequently, it’s not uncommon for innocent people to be punished for a crime they didn’t commit or didn’t realize they had committed. They may be charged with conspiracy simply because they were close to those engaged in illegal activity. Partnering with a drug conspiracy lawyer can protect your rights throughout the entire legal process.
What Are the Penalties for a Louisiana Drug Conspiracy Charge?
Drug conspiracy charges are considered felonies under federal law and carry very harsh penalties. When you’re facing these charges, you’ll get punished in the same ways as if you had fully committed the crime. The penalty will depend on the type and quantity of drug in question.
If you are facing charges involving large quantities of drugs, you may have to pay a fine of up to $10 million or spend 10 years to life in prison. If the substance killed or injured someone, you may receive a sentence of 20 years in addition to the fine.
If your case involves small quantities of drugs, you may face five to 40 years in prison or a fine of up to $5 million. Unfortunately, drug conspiracy charges don’t carry their own set of penalties. Instead, you’ll face the same harsh penalties as those who commit the offense if convicted.
Louisiana Drug Conspiracy Defenses
The best ways to beat drug conspiracy charges are when you have enough evidence that proves you were either not in an agreement with the other alleged guilty party or if there are other circumstances surrounding your case. Since this is a complex process, a skilled Louisiana federal criminal defense lawyer can guide you on the way forward. Some of the tactics utilized to beat drug conspiracy charges in Louisiana include:
The Legality of the Search or Interrogation
A dedicated drug conspiracy defense attorney can investigate and look for any illegalities in the obtained evidence used against you. If the agents or officers obtained the evidence through an illegal search and seizure or through entrapment, then you can use this as a defense. Illegal evidence cannot be used in court against you, increasing the chances of beating the charges.
Withdrawal From Conspiracy
To use this as a defense, you’ll be required to show that you proactively withdrew from the conspiracy and took affirmative action to stop participating. You must have withdrawn and taken various steps before the others committed the crime. This could also include taking measures to prevent the conspiracy from happening.
There Was No Agreement
If the conspirators don’t share any common goals or are not working together, the defense can show that there is no conspiracy. This defense is effective when the prosecutor doesn’t have enough evidence to prove that the conspiracy existed.
Lack of Intent or Knowledge of the Conspiracy
To be charged with drug conspiracy, a person must have intentionally joined the scheme. This includes taking steps to help in the plan. Therefore, you may show that you were not knowingly involved in the Louisiana drug conspiracy. You could show that you didn’t enter into the scheme, even if you were there when the conspiracy took place.
You Were Coerced
Agents or police officers may force or trick you into giving a statement or confession that would incriminate you. If that’s the case, you may use it to invalidate your confession.
Consult an Experienced Louisiana Drug Crime Defense Lawyer
While drug conspiracy charges may not seem as severe as the actual crime, you may still face harsh penalties. Given the intense nature of these penalties, you’ll need a skilled lawyer to have a fighting chance. An experienced lawyer at John D. & Eric G. Johnson Law Firm can implement the defense tactics described above to help you beat your drug conspiracy charges.
We will evaluate the charges against you, gather evidence, and aggressively fight to defend your freedom. Call us today at (318) 377-1555 or contact us online to get the help you need to beat or mitigate your drug conspiracy charges and reduce your sentence.