Drugs and controlled substances are illegal in Canada and therefore if you are apprehended for the production, possession or trafficking of drugs you will likely receive criminal charges in accordance with the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act.
Drugs tend to be classified as "hard drugs" or "soft drugs". Hard drugs are characterized by their highly addictive nature and the fact that an overdose of these drugs will often result in death of the user. Charges and penalties related to hard drugs tend to be more severe than comparable crimes involving soft drugs. Here are some common examples of hard and soft drugs:
Drug related charges include:
Drug charges depend on the many factors of the case, such as the type of drug, the quantity, and the alleged purpose of use. The penalty for possession of small quantities of soft drugs are generally not severe but nevertheless result in a criminal record. The maximum penalty for possession of marijuana is a $1,000 fine and 6-months in jail. Trafficking in marijuana can result in a 5-year prison sentence and the maximum sentence for cultivating marijuana is seven years in prison.
If you are faced with a charge of production, possession or trafficking drugs, don't limit your options. Even a simple marijuana possession charge can give you a criminal record that can effect your mobility for the rest of your life. A good lawyer can often utilize a valid defense, according to your particular case and your circumstances. For example, you have the right to be secure against unreasonable search and seizure, as per Section 8 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. Other effective defenses might include the validity of a search warrant, reliability of witnesses and just cause for wiretap authorizations. You don't have to make any statements to the police, as they may use anything you say against you. Always remember that anyone is presumed innocent until proven guilty. Do not give up and enter a guilty plea to drug-related charges. Instead, contact an experienced lawyer to help prevent a conviction.
With the right defence it may even be possible that charges against you will be dropped. At Kruse Law we emphasize the need for rehabilitation and convincing the Crown that rehabilitation is made even more difficult when individuals are burdened by the stigma of a criminal record. With our help, many drug traffickers have been given a new lease on life and were able to turn themselves around and become law abiding citizens. Without expert counsel, most drug traffickers are sent to jail, usually from nine months to about two years if they are first time offenders. The actual sentence depends on the circumstances, such as the amount and types of narcotics, how sophisticated the operation is and how long it has operated.
When consulting with a criminal lawyer, it is important to be prepared to answer a number of questions, such as the circumstances of the charges, the strength of the case and what the Crown will need to prove guilt, any statements that you may have released, any possible defenses, and also whether you are a Canadian citizen.