Qualified Criminal Defence Lawyers
Facing Drug Charges
Possession, Trafficking & Production
Defending Drug Charges
Are you currently being charged with a criminal drug offence in Canada? The criminal drug laws in Canada cover possession, trafficking, possession with the intent to traffic, importation, production and being involved in any of the above. These types of offences are prosecuted under the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act.
When you have been charged with a drug crime, you need a lawyer who understands the various drug offences, available defences, and will fight on your behalf. Our team of criminal defence lawyers at Ross Lutz Barristers have a combined 98 years experience defending clients across Canada.
It’s essential to have a defence lawyer who understands the law surrounding drug offences to best protect you. Our team at Ross Lutz Barristers will defend you vigorously against any drug charge, including drug possession, trafficking and importation.
Professional Legal Advice
All offences under the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act are serious and, if convicted, may result in jail time and a criminal record. This is why it is so critical to retain an experienced criminal defence lawyer as soon as possible.
An experienced lawyer will be able to guide you to the best defence possible for your case. The sooner you can retain professional legal advice, the sooner we can prepare for your court date.
Experienced Criminal Defence Lawyers
Every meeting with a member of our legal team begins with a consultation. We will learn the facts of your arrest and charges and determine the best strategy for you. The free consultation will also allow us to gain insight into your case and provide you with our experienced opinion.
When you decide to retain one of our criminal defence lawyers, what you see is what you get. Your case is never passed down to a different associate. The criminal lawyer you hire and build a relationship with is the lawyer who will represent you in court.
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Defending Drug-related crimes
Creating the best defence strategy
two common issues in drug cases
Two issues typically arise in drug cases. The first is whether or not legal possession can be proven beyond a reasonable doubt. The second is how the police obtained the alleged drugs.
Other potential defences may apply, such as the proof of the substance’s nature, whether or not the drug was possessed for the purpose alleged, such as drug trafficking, or whether or not a specific activity took place.
Drug law is complicated, and having a lawyer who has experience with the prosecutor and who knows and has advanced the available defences is invaluable.
What Classifies as a controlled substance
In Canada, there is no such thing as a minor drug offence. Even with the recent legalization of marijuana, drugs remain illegal and are viewed as a severe offence.
Categories For Drugs
Drugs are classified based on how seriously the government considers them, with Schedule 1 drug charges involving cocaine and its derivative drugs, opium-based drugs, or heroin being the most serious. A schedule 2 drug offence includes marijuana and its derivatives, such as oils, and are classified by weight.
Schedule 3 drug offence charges cover “designer drugs” such as hallucinogens, LSD, Magic Mushrooms, amphetamine-derivatives and other sedatives and stimulants.
Substances defined as “hard drugs,” like fentanyl, carfentanil, heroin and cocaine, carry more severe sentences than so-called “soft drugs” like marijuana. Marijuana charges are now prosecuted under the Cannabis Act.
Trafficking and possession for the purpose of trafficking in these substances now attract the highest range of sentence exceeding even heroin based on recent case law sentencing decisions.
Charged with drug possession?
Possession of drugs doesn’t necessarily mean physical possession, with the drugs being on your person. Possession requires the accused party to know about having a legitimate prohibited substance. Whether in their home, car, on their person, or with a friend, you can be charged with drug possession.
Typically, the most common drug possession cases in Canada are related to Schedule 1 and 2 drugs.
Many people believe being charged with possession requires personally holding or possessing a drug. However, one may be charged for simply being in the presence of someone with a drug. A group of people may be found guilty of joint possession.
This occurs if any member of a party is holding drugs with the knowledge, consent, and assisted control of others. Charges may also apply if an individual has stored drugs anywhere under his or her control.
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Drug Possession With Intent To Traffic
Transporting & Selling Drugs
“Trafficking” is defined broadly and includes anything from transporting and selling drugs to merely giving someone a drug. For example, sharing an illegal drug may be considered trafficking. When you are found with drugs in your possession, the question becomes whether these drugs were for personal use or purchased with the intent to traffic.
The possession of drugs for resale and distribution to make a profit will make your charge much more serious. Being involved in a large illegal commercial enterprise is viewed negatively by the court, and it’s essential to have a defence team that understands this investigation process.
Drug Importing & Exporting
Importing drugs into Canada is one of the most severe drug-related offences. Exportation is similar but focuses on illegal drugs and the transportation of those drugs out of Canada. These two drug offences are incredibly complex because they involve an analysis surrounding the transportation of illegal drugs and the border.
After all, a citizen’s rights are reduced when it comes to crossing the Canadian border. Importation charges are difficult because the offence originates outside of Canada. Tracking down this information and potentially countering it is not an easy task.
A charge related to importing drugs can carry a lengthy sentence, one that parallels homicide sentences. Importing drugs include bringing controlled substances into the country through means such as swallowing drug-filled plastic bags and mailing or moving drug parcels across the border.
When being charged with drug importing, it’s crucial to hire a criminal defence lawyer who has experience dealing with these cases.
Drug importing cases often include the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA), and they operate under slightly different laws than regular enforcement.
Experienced Defence Lawyers
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Creating Controlled Substances
production of controlled substances
The production of controlled substances is viewed as a severe offence by the Crown. Drug production refers to the creation of all controlled substances, including methamphetamines in meth labs, or the growing of marijuana in grow-ops. Even assistants in the growth and production process can be incriminated.
A property owner who knowingly allows others to use their premises for drug production may also face charges. Charges regarding drug production often come with minimum jail time.
Criminal Drug Offence Lawyers
Our lawyers have successfully represented individuals charged with all of these drug offences. Depending on the nature of the offence, the illegal drug alleged, the consequences of a conviction can be severe.
This is why it is critical that you retain a lawyer as quickly as possible who is experienced with how these offences are prosecuted and who has successfully advanced the available defences. Our lawyers are unique due to our experience and our creative collaboration. Contact us today so that we can get started on your defence.