Skilled Defense Of Those Facing Drug Charges In Michigan
In the government’s “war on drugs,” overzealous law enforcement officials and prosecutors sometimes make mistakes or take liberties with constitutional rights. Our prisons are filled with people who have committed no other offense than drug use, and many of those are overcharged or unfairly incarcerated.
I am criminal defense lawyer Bernard Jocuns. Much of my career has involved battling the government on behalf of people arrested for drug crimes. In fact, I’m proud to say I played a role in the decriminalizing of marijuana in Michigan. But the authorities have simply doubled down on other controlled substances, so work for me and my team at Jocuns Law Firm is never done.
Experience With The Full Array of Drug Crimes
Call my law office in Lapeer at 810-498-2772 if you or a family member are charged with any drug offense, including:
- Possession of cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine or ecstasy
- Possession of prescription narcotics (pills) and prescription fraud
- Possession with intent to distribute
- Drug trafficking (sale, transport, distribution)
- Drug manufacturing
- Possession of marijuana or cannabis plants (misdemeanor amount)
- Unauthorized sale or distribution of marijuana (felony amount)
Most drug crimes are felony crimes, carrying several years up to life in prison. In addition to the prison term, steep fines and a permanent criminal record, drug convictions can also trigger civil asset forfeiture of property used in drug trafficking or obtained from drug proceeds (money, vehicles, homes).
I’m Not Here To Make You Plead Guilty
My job is to provide a defense. That means holding law enforcement accountable for violating constitutional rights such as the Fourth Amendment protection against unlawful search and seizure. It means aggressively challenging the prosecution’s evidence and version of events. How did the police find the drugs? How are they connecting the drugs to you?
Drug offenses are frequently overcharged, based on the amount of drugs or circumstantial evidence such as baggies and cash. The government will often cast a wide net, charging all people in a household or all occupants of a vehicle when drugs are discovered, or inflating charges against those who played a minor role in a trafficking operation. My goal is to get unfounded charges dismissed or convince the prosecutor to reduce the charges to match the facts of the case. I examine all the evidence to gauge the strength of the prosecution’s case and the prospects for going to trial. Many drug cases are eventually resolved through a plea agreement, but that is not my starting point.
What Are The Penalties For Drug Offenses In Michigan?
The potential term of incarceration and other punishments depend on several factors, including:
- The type of drug – Schedule I and II drugs (such as heroin and meth) are considered the most dangerous and carry the harshest penalties.
- The amount – There are tiers of penalties based on the quantity of each specific controlled substance.
- Drug priors – The penalties are enhanced if a person has previous drug convictions.
- Weapons – The use of a weapon (or simply possessing a gun in the commission of a drug offense) can add years to the presumptive prison sentence for the drug charge.
I can gauge the likely penalties or a range of penalties for your circumstances, based on my knowledge of the drug statutes, the sentencing guidelines and the cases I have litigated. From there, you and I can determine the best strategy to avoid or minimize those consequences, either at trial or in negotiations.
Don’t Say Anything Until You Talk To A Lawyer
An arrest can be a confusing and upsetting experience, whether it is your first brush with the law or you have a criminal history. The charges may seem undeserved, and you might feel that explaining your situation to law enforcement officials will get you out of this challenging situation. It won’t. In fact, it could hurt your case. Before you say anything to the police, call my firm and ask to speak with Bernard Jocuns.
You work with me, as I personally handle every criminal matter, including motions and court appearances. I practice regularly in the criminal courts of Lapeer, Genessee, Tuscola, Sanilac and surrounding counties, and I have tried drug cases throughout Michigan. Call my office in Lapeer at 810-498-2772 to arrange a free initial consultation, or contact me online.