Criminal offenses involving drugs are among the most common seen in Missouri courts. They’re also among the most harshly penalized criminal offenses in the state. Missouri treats drug crimes seriously, and penalties can include lengthy prison sentences and costly fines. A conviction for a Missouri drug offense can result in many negative consequences, including, but not limited to:
- A jail or prison Sentence
- Substantial Fines
- Ineligibility for federal student loans to pay for college or trade school
- Losing your job or trouble finding work due to a criminal conviction.
- Ineligibility to work as a lawyer, doctor, teacher, nurse, or other profession which requires a state license.
- Loss of, or restrictions on, child custody.
- Loss of an immigration visa of green card, or deportation if you are not a citizen
However, Missouri law also provides for alternatives to the serious consequences that accompany a drug conviction. In many cases, there are opportunities to avoid a conviction by completing probation, drug court, or other drug treatment programs.
If you are facing drug charges in Missouri, having the help of an experienced St. Louis defense lawyer can mean the difference between serving a prison term or getting probation and treatment. An experienced Missouri attorney can evaluate all of your individual circumstances, review the strength of the prosecution's case, and formulate a plan to avoid the more serious consequences you may be facing.
To a non-lawyer, drug cases may seem pretty cut and dry: If the police found drugs on your or in your house or vehicle, you must be guilty. However, drug cases can be some of the most complex cases that we handle. In every drug case, there is either a "search" and/or a "seizure", which implicates the Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution. If the search or seizure is unlawful, then the evidence is not admissible at trial--which usually means the case must be dismissed.
It is therefore imperative that you hire an experienced attorney who is knowledgeable about search and seizure issues. We have handled hundreds of drugs cases and have experience challenging unlawful searches and seizures in court. If you or a loved one is facing a drug charge, please do not hesitate to contact attorney Brian J. Cooke today.