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Federal penalties for cocaine trafficking are severe

On Behalf of | Mar 18, 2020 | federal criminal charges | 0 comments

There are many people in Pennsylvania who use various drugs. Many people take these drugs for medical purposes and receive them through prescriptions from doctors. However, not all people who take drugs do so with a prescription. Also, there are many drugs that people take that doctors do not prescribe for any reason. These types of drugs include meth, heroin, cocaine and many others. When people take these drugs, it is illegal.

However, in order for people to use these drugs others must provide it to them through drug trafficking. The federal government takes drug trafficking very seriously and the penalties for those who are caught is very severe. The penalties depend on the amount people are caught with and the type of drug though.

For example, for cocaine, if people are caught with 500–4,999 grams and it is their first offense, the penalties include a minimum of five years in prison with a maximum sentence of 40 years. Individuals also face a maximum fine of $5 million. If more than one person is caught the maximum fine increases to $25 million. If it is people’s second offense, they could face a minimum of eight years in prison and a maximum of life in prison. They could also be fined a maximum of $8 million for individuals and $50 if it is a group of people.

These penalties are only imposed if people are convicted though. Many people in Pennsylvania may be charged with federal drug trafficking, but that does not mean they are guilty. Everyone is innocent until proven guilty and there could be defenses available to them. Many defenses begin with whether the police had a valid reason to stop and search the people involved. If they did not have a valid reason, the evidence of the drugs could be suppressed and convictions become very unlikely. Experienced attorneys understand the defenses and could help protect people’s rights after being charged with drug offenses.