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Houston Drug Crime Lawyer

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If you have been charged with a drug related offense in Houston, Texas, contact attorney Mark Thiessen at 713.864.9000 or request a free case evaluation. We serve Houston and the surrounding areas and are available 24/7 to fight for you.

Texas Drug Criminal Defense Lawyer

If you have been charged with a drug crime, then you need immediate representation. These crimes include drug possession; marijuana possession (POM); cocaine or other controlled substances possession (PCS); possession of chemicals for manufacturing drugs; manufacture or cultivation of controlled substances; dealing, delivery, importation or transportation of narcotics; or drug distribution, sales or trafficking.

Drug Offenses in Texas Criminal Courts

The State of Texas and the Federal Government investigate and prosecute the same types of drug cases. State courts handle small-amount drug delivery and possession cases that are classified as state jail or 3rd degree felonies. Depending on which agency works the case, most drug cases end up in federal district court, with some landing in state court.

The Harris County District Attorney’s office now has special drug prosecution divisions assigned to handle the larger cases. The Harris County DA will prosecute cases involving as much as twenty kilos of cocaine.

Working with Thiessen Law Firm

In some respects, the state court is a more attractive court for the accused. Unlike federal court, a state judge is not required to consult guidelines to determine the proper sentence. Also, in Texas, the accused may submit punishment decisions to the jury. As a result, Thiessen has been very successful in obtaining probation for cases in state court that would have concluded differently in federal court. Thiessen has also had drug cases dismissed.

Building Effective Defenses for Drug Cases

No matter the amount of drugs, defenses for drug cases generally fall into three categories:

  1. The seized goods were not illegal drugs
  2. The drugs were not “possessed” by the defendant
  3. The drugs were seized illegally. This defense is usually addressed through a pretrial motion to suppress; however, in Texas, a defendant can submit to the jury a factual dispute relating to a constitutional issue under Article 38.23.

Penalties for Drug-Related Offenses in Texas

Four drug penalty groups exist, with penalty group one being the most severe and carrying the most punishment. Depending on the amount, possession of a drug in penalty group four or three may be a misdemeanor. Keep in mind, though, that a conviction for a drug offense may carry with it collateral punishment, such as a driver’s license suspension.

Common State Drug/Narcotics Offense Punishment Ranges:

Class CPossession of Drug Paraphernalia0-$500 fine
Class BPossession of Marijuana (0-2 oz)0 – 180 days in jail
Class APossession of Marijuana (2-4 oz)0-1 year in jail
4th DegreePossession of Marijuana (4 oz – 5 lbs)
Possession of Penalty Group 1
Less than 1 gram (such as Cocaine, Heroin, etc.)
6-24 months in state jail
3rd DegreePossession of Marijuana (5 lbs – 50 lbs)
Possession of Penalty Group 1
1-4 grams
2-10 years in prison
2nd DegreePossession of Marijuana (50 lbs – 2000 lbs)
Possession of Penalty Group 1
4-200 grams
2-20 years in prison
1st DegreePossession of Penalty Group 1
200-400 grams
5 years – life in prison
1st Degree
Possession of Penalty Group 1
over 400 grams
10 years – life in prison

For more information on the classifications of drugs and criminal offenses associated with these, see the Texas Controlled Substances Act.

Illegal Search and Seizure

Mr. Thiessen will investigate all avenues of a drug arrest to determine whether the government violated the search and seizure laws. Because illegal search and seizure is a threat to the freedom and privacy of all Americans, it is called the poisonous fruit doctrine. The reason for this name is that if the drugs were obtained illegally, they are poison and should not come into evidence.

Representation in a Variety of Cases

Mr. Thiessen can help if you are facing drug charges involving marijuana, cocaine, crack, heroin, LSD, mescaline, amphetamines, methamphetamine (meth, ice), ecstasy, GHB (water), Rohypnol, steroids, testosterone, and prescription narcotics and drugs such as Xanex, Vicodin, Valium, Percocet, codeine, hydrocodone, morphine, SOMA and Oxycontin (oxycodone).

You can’t afford to take a chance with your reputation and freedom. Call Thiessen Law firm today at 713.864.9000 to discover how our Houston, TX lawyers can help you.

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