Drug convictions in Louisiana can lead to long prison sentences in the state or federal prison system. Additionally, fines can run into the thousands, and the government has broad power to seize and forfeit property. Ward Law can protect you from the harsh consequences of a drug crime conviction. Baton Rouge criminal defense attorney Samuel “Chuck” Ward is a former prosecutor and criminal defense lawyer with a long string of trials and successes. In charges ranging from possession of marijuana to operating a clandestine meth lab, he has been able to have evidence suppressed from an unconstitutional search and had clients released from custody after getting a ruling there was no probable cause to hold the individual. From a dismissal of charges to probation or a not guilty verdict, we’ll work to find a solution to the charges against you.
If you’ve been arrested on drug charges in Baton Rouge, Ward Law provides a strategic, aggressive defense to obtain a positive outcome on your behalf.
Drug Charges Can Be Defended
Louisiana criminal law prohibits the cultivation, manufacture, distribution, sale, purchase, use, possession, transportation or importation of any controlled drug or narcotic substance. Penalties for drug possession or trafficking depend primarily on the type and quantity of drugs involved, and punishments can range from 15 days in jail and $300 in fines to 40 years in prison at hard labor and fines up to a million dollars.
The harsh penalties for a drug crime conviction may be avoided with the help of a skilled and knowledgeable drug crime defense attorney fighting on your side. At Ward Law, we’ve had experience and success challenging the prosecution’s case while protecting your constitutional rights. Defenses to drug charges can include, for instance:
- A search, stop or arrest was unconstitutional, and any evidence seized cannot be used in court
- Law enforcement botched the chain of custody of the alleged drugs and cannot link them to the defendant
- Laboratory testing failed to identify the nature of the alleged controlled substance
- The government failed to produce the alleged drugs in court
- You were arrested for possession of drugs that were not actually in your possession, and you didn’t know the drugs were there, you didn’t know what they were, or they simply weren’t yours
- Undercover sting operations went too far and amounted to unfair and illegal entrapment
Drug Dogs – Ward Law Has Particular Expertise Fighting These Search Warrants on a Leash
Can the police use a drug dog to sniff out drugs on your person, in your car or in your home? Do they need a warrant before bringing a trained canine around your vehicle or to your front door? What is the difference between using a drug dog to detect drugs in your home or using an infrared camera or other surveillance device to peek inside your house? Do you have a right to privacy when it comes to a dog sniffing your clothes or the backpack you are carrying?
These are complicated questions without easy answers, and the court rulings on these issues can be varied and contradictory. Baton Rouge drug crime defense attorney Chuck Ward has a high level of expertise in this area. He understands the applicable law and available defenses, including how to successfully challenge the certification of the canine or its handler. Drug dog cases are a niche area in drug crime prosecutions and defense; call Ward Law for help if your case involves a drug-sniffing dog.
Drug Court and Diversion – Alternatives for People Who Need Treatment, not Punishment
Sometimes people arrested for drug crimes or other offenses suffer from addiction or a substance use disorder. Louisiana law and public policy recognize that people in this situation need treatment, not incarceration. Options are available to get your case diverted from the criminal system and heard in drug court instead. At Ward Law, we’ll discuss the pros and cons of this route and whether it would benefit you in your unique situation. We’ll work to achieve the most favorable outcome that meets your individual needs.