Drug Distribution and Trafficking
You’ve been branded a drug trafficker. A common criminal.
The government, without warning, has put you on notice. You’re told that they have evidence linking you to crimes punishable by incarceration and a dishonorable discharge.
You can pretend none of this is real. That they have nothing against you. That you can somehow ignore the situation and make it out a free man. But you’d be taking a very dangerous road. Consider some of the risks:
- Ignoring the situation allows the prosecution to build their case against you. If you think other service members won’t turn on you to save their own skins, you could be in for a terrible wake-up call.
- Hiring a defense attorney late—or worse, relying on an inexperienced free attorney from the JAG Corps—limits your options. You may be forced to take the plea deal or risk years and years behind bars.
- You’re left in complete limbo. How do you plan for your future when you aren’t sure you’ll be in the army in a year, let alone a free man or woman?
What to Expect From Drug Charges Involving Trafficking or Intent to Distribute
Expect the military to come at you hard and fast. Expect prosecutors to spare no expense in plotting their case against you. Expect to be hit with the harshest sentencing possible. Expect, in other words, to have the fight of your life on your hands. What begins as a military drug charge will not stop there. Your civilian future could be tainted by criminal drug charges:
- Future job prospects will dry up
- Promotions will go to others
- You will be left at the bottom, with no military benefits to keep your head above water
This future is entirely unacceptable for someone that has fought for their country and served with distinction and honor. Which is why your only response should be to fight back in kind against the very military that you swore to protect.
Bilecki & Tipon aggressively defend military service members caught up in criminal drug charges involving distribution or trafficking. We are often the last line of defense that these service members have left. If you fear for your future or are at all uncertain about what the government could have against you, contact Bilecki & Tipon TODAY.
I Was Caught By A Sting Operation. Now What?
Sting operations are rampant in today’s military. The NCIS and other law enforcement agencies will often perform these operations for weeks and months, collecting names and gathering evidence.
Even after the investigation closes, law enforcement will work out deals with service members to provide testimony against the bigger fish higher up in the distribution chain. If you’re caught up in such a sting operation, don’t be surprised if dozens of service members and former friends rat you out to save their own skins. As a general rule, we don’t represent snitches in drug distribution cases.
The sheer amount of witness testimony and evidence should be enough to bury most service members and convict them outright. That’s what the prosecution is counting on.
But it’s these cases in particular that Bilecki & Tipon has a reputation of winning:
- The sting operation itself may be illegal. If so, the evidence against you could be thrown out before ever setting foot in a trial.
- Our own investigations can root out inconsistencies in the stories of witnesses. A witness with no credibility is worthless to the prosecution.
- Drug evidence obtained may have been tampered with or picked up in an illegal search by law enforcement.
Winning Your Case Should Be Your Only Priority. For That, There’s Bilecki & Tipon
The prosecution wants you to believe your case is hopeless. That couldn’t be further from the truth. Bilecki & Tipon fights and wins distribution and trafficking charges all the time. If you think your case is unwinnable, chances are we’ve fought—and won—cases that were even tougher!
I Was Buying Drugs on the Deep Web, I Thought They Couldn’t Track Me
While using a TOR browser to navigate the deep web gives you levels of anonymity which just aren’t available on the world wide web, it doesn’t totally isolate you from law enforcement.
Many service members utilize the deep web to purchase narcotics using bitcoin accounts and have those drugs shipped to them. It’s often during shipment where the narcotics are picked up by customs and a controlled delivery is made. In these situations, law enforcement will be waiting when you pick up the package to arrest you.
In more large-scale operations, if law enforcement is able to get ahold of your digital devices, they can use forensic tools to exploit the data and often recover incriminating information – even if the dark web was used.
We have seen a large uptick in service members being charged with drug offenses related to the purchase of narcotics on the deep web. If you are in this situation, call us. We understand the nuances of the deep web and have an in-house certified digital forensic examiner who can assist the defense team.
This will only lead to harsher sentencing and more aggressive tactics by prosecutors. Which is why it’s more important than ever that you have a defense attorney with a proven record for winning drug cases in the military.
I May Have Sold a Small Amount. Why Are They Coming At Me Like I’m Some Drug Lord?
The military is often far more interested in making an example out of you than they are at giving you a fair trial and proper sentencing. In the civilian world, drug offenses are quite common. Marijuana use is legal in many states.
Not so in the military. NCIS, CID, commands, and prosecutors take drug distribution very seriously and often do not have a good frame of reference regarding what is truly a minor amount and what is not. To the military, almost any amount of product which is sold is considered substantial.
Depending on your circumstances, if convicted, it’s very possible that they could request sentencing that is unduly harsh for the sale of a minor amount of drugs. It’s imperative that you act as soon as possible to combat these charges against you. Just enlisting the services of trained court-martial lawyers and attorneys can be enough to put a stop to the military’s heavy-handed attempts at conviction.
What Is an Article 112a?
Article 112a of the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) defines the wrongful use, possession, and distribution of controlled substances. According to Article 112a:
Any person subject to this chapter who wrongfully uses, possesses, manufactures, distributes, imports into the customs territory of the United States, exports from the United States, or introduces into an installation, vessel, vehicle, or aircraft used by or under the control of the armed forces a substance described in subsection (b) shall be punished as a court-martial may direct.