Facing Drug Possession Charges? Hire a Criminal Lawyer in Brampton to Defend You

Farid Zamani
Farid Zamani
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Drug possession is a serious crime with potentially far-reaching consequences, and the laws related to drug possession and trafficking are highly complex. If you’ve been charged with drug possession or you’ve been called in for questioning, you will want to be extremely well prepared. Getting a experienced Brampton criminal lawyer is the best way to get your charges dismissed or reduced.

What Qualifies as Drug Possession Under the Law?

In Canada, drug-related offences are covered in the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act (“CDSA”). A drug possession charge can apply to any of these:

  • Actual possession, meaning that the drug was found on the accused person.
  • Constructive possession, in which the accused has control over the drug but doesn’t have it on their person. For example, they might be storing the drugs at their home or in their car.
  • Joint possession, meaning that the accused shared control of the drug with another person.

Possession applies to the controlled substances listed in the CDSA and to marijuana and its derivatives if they are over the legal limit.

It can be challenging for a layperson to understand the details of these laws and how they are applied. Don’t face this situation without a qualified criminal lawyer in Brampton to defend you and guide you through the process.

Which Drugs and Substances are Illegal in Ontario?

 The CDSA breaks illegal drugs and substances into four categories called “schedules.”

  • Schedule I: opioids and related drugs
  • Schedule II: cannabis and its derivatives if over the legal limit
  • Schedule III: stimulants and hallucinogens (including psilocybin)
  • Schedule IV: barbiturates and benzodiazepines

Some substances, such as morphine, can be considered “controlled” rather than outright illegal, meaning that you need a prescription for that drug; if you don’t have a prescription, it’s illegal for you to possess it, even if it was given to you by someone who does have a prescription. Other drugs, such as heroin and cocaine, are strictly illegal, and still others are legal within a specified limit.

There are many other circumstances in which drug possession could be considered problematic. For example, if you continually refill a prescription for a controlled substance that you never use, you could be in legal trouble if you don’t dispose of the extra supply.

The laws related to substances are complex, nuanced and constantly being revised. Unless you are a criminal lawyer in Brampton yourself, you may have trouble keeping up to date with the laws and how they are interpreted in Brampton courts. Protect yourself by hiring a criminal lawyer with Brampton court experience.

What Should I Do If I Get Arrested?

Regardless of what you’re charged with, call a criminal lawyer in Brampton immediately. It is remarkably easy to make a mistake while you are trying to defend yourself. For example, you might say that the drugs were not yours but that a friend had asked you to store them for a while. This still qualifies as possession, and in telling the police about it, you’ve given them evidence they can use against you. Hire a criminal lawyer before you say anything to the police.

How Can a Criminal Lawyer in Brampton Help?

A criminal lawyer for Brampton drug possession cases could use one of a few strategies for your defence.

Protecting Your Rights

Your lawyer will ensure that your rights are protected throughout your interaction with the criminal justice system. Upon arrest, the police must inform you about your right to speak to an attorney. If you weren’t told about this right, or you weren’t given the option of calling a criminal lawyer after your Brampton arrest, you may be able to have the charges against you dismissed.

You also have the right to be free from illegal search and seizure. Your lawyer will scrutinize the details of how the drugs were located to make sure this right was respected. Violation of this basic right forms the core of the defence strategy in many drug possession cases.

Collecting Additional Evidence

Your lawyer may look for additional evidence that can be used in your defence. For example, they might examine the location where the drugs were found to see who could have had access to them, question witnesses who were present when the drugs were seized to identify any procedural errors or misconduct by the police and gather information about the drugs themselves.

Your lawyer might also assemble documentary evidence such as prescription records, arrange for expert witnesses, or hire a private investigator to look into the background and movements of other people who could be responsible. Having a criminal lawyer with Brampton experience is highly beneficial when this type of additional evidence is being collected.

Arguing That You Lacked Knowledge or Control

For a successful guilty verdict, the crown attorney must show that you knew about the controlled or illegal substance and that you had control over it. Control in this context means that the drugs were on your person, or you could easily access them in a location that you had authority over, such as your home or a locker assigned to you.

Note that the crown attorney must prove both knowledge and control beyond a reasonable doubt. Your criminal lawyer in Brampton will attempt to instill that doubt in the judge or the jury by calling the crown’s evidence and arguments into question.

Challenging Your Identification

If the drugs in question were found in an area that multiple people had access to, the criminal lawyer for your Brampton case might argue that the drugs belonged to someone else and that you were incorrectly identified as the owner.

Raising Procedural Issues or Police Misconduct Problems

Your attorney will rigorously scrutinize the details surrounding the discovery of the drugs, the chain of custody of the evidence, and the conduct of the police officers involved in the search and seizure and your arrest. Any chain of custody or police misconduct issues could be used in your defence.

Negotiating for a Reduced Charge or Reduced Punishment

Every criminal lawyer in Brampton does a great deal of work behind the scenes. Some of this work includes talking to the crown attorney about ways to mitigate the effect of a guilty plea or a guilty verdict on their client. This could mean negotiating for a lesser charge or a lighter sentence. Your lawyer’s advocacy efforts don’t end when you enter a plea or receive an unfavourable verdict!

These are the more common defences that a lawyer might use, but there are many other options which depend on the particulars of your case. Don’t hesitate to bring up anything that could be useful.

Zamani Law – A Criminal Lawyer in Brampton Can Help

When you are accused of a crime, it can be tempting to declare your innocence and attempt to defend yourself, but you should leave your defence in the capable hands of a good criminal lawyer with a Brampton practice.

The team at Zamani Law has the expertise, experience, and resources to defend you against any criminal offence, including drug possession. You can depend on us to fight tirelessly for your rights and to get the best outcome possible for you. Always remember the first rule of getting arrested: don’t talk to the police before you talk to a lawyer. Make that lawyer Zamani Law, the criminal lawyer in Brampton who will defend you to the end!

Contact us today for a free consultation.

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