S. Zalman Haouzi Avocat

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Montreal Drug Offences Lawyer

What Is Drug Possession?

It is illegal to possess any of the drugs listed in the annexes of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act. Possession entails both knowledge and control, meaning that you are aware that a substance is in your possession and consent to it being there. Of course, if you are in possession of a quantity of drugs that is too great for personal use, the charge would likely be possession for the purposes of trafficking.

What Is Drug Trafficking?

Drug trafficking entails selling, administering, giving, transfering, transporting, sending or delivering any substance that’s listed in the annexes of the Controlled Drug and Substance Act. Keep in mind that you can be charged with conspiracy to traffic no matter how small your role in an organization is (even if you’ve never personally touched any contraband) just by engaging in acts that further the interests of the organization.

What Other Drug Offences Are There?

There are all sorts of other drug offences that the Controlled Drug and Substance Act explicitly prohibits, like: possession (s. 4), importing and exporting (s. 6), and production (s. 7). Additionally, when simple possession of small amounts of marijuana were legalized, the government established The Cannabis Act, which prohibits several crimes, like: possession of more cannabis than legally permitted (s. 8), distribution without authorization (s. 9), selling without authorization (s. 10), and production without authorization (s. 12).

What Are The Consequences Of Being Convicted Of Drug Trafficking?

Depending on the nature and quantity of the drug being trafficked, as well as the role played in the crime, sentences can range from probation to years of incarceration. Since serious drug trafficking offences carry maximum sentences of life imprisonment, discharges and other more lenient sentences are statutorily barred. Additionally, drug trafficking can carry mandatory minimum sentences of imprisonment if done for a criminal organization or done near a school zone.

How To Contest A Drug Trafficking Charge

The most conventional way of fighting a drug trafficking charge is by getting the evidence excluded or the proceedings stayed by illustrating that the police, in the course of their investigation or during the arrest, violated a fundamental right or used a defective warrant.

I’ve Been Charged With Drug Trafficking - Now What?

If you’ve been charged with drug trafficking, you should consult counsel immediately. You should further invoke your right to remain silent and refuse to answer any questions. It’s also strongly encouraged to take note of your version of events from the moment that the police interacted with you; pay particular attention to the following:

  • If no warrant was used, how did the officers first come across you and at what point were you detained or arrested?
  • Did they provide you with your right to counsel and right to silence?
  • If a warrant was used, what time was it executed?
  • When did they inform you of your rights?
  • Were you stripsearched?

All of these details are crucial and may be the only way to get the evidence of your guilt excluded.

If you’re being investigated for a drug offence, have been criminal charged or just have questions about your rights and obligations under the law, contact S. Zalman Haouzi Avocat today for a consultation!

Are you facing criminal charges in Montreal or the surrounding areas? Contact us now, we’re here to help!

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