Do I Need a Lawyer for Drug Charges in Chicago?

Updated on January 5, 2022
Updated: June 20, 2022

Whether you're facing a federal drug trafficking charge or a misdemeanor possession charge, you need a skilled drug crime defense lawyer who is committed to protecting you and your constitutional rights. You need a legal advocate — someone who will stand between the prosecution and you to make sure that you receive a strong defense.

You can find the experienced criminal defense attorney you need at Tommalieh Law. With decades of experience, our knowledgeable Cook County criminal defense attorneys can offer a strong defense to any drug charges, including:

  • Cocaine and Heroin Possession charges
  • Drug Manufacturing and Cultivation criminal Charges
  • Drug Trafficking charges
  • Drug Possession charges
  • Drug Possession with Intent to Deliver
  • Marijuana Possession
  • Prescription Drug Charges
  • Federal Drug crimes
  • Other controlled substance offenses

What are Drug Criminal Offenses in Illinois?

Drug crimes include any use, possession, manufacture, or distribution of any sort of illegal substance. This includes all criminal offenses involving cocaine, ecstasy, heroin, marijuana, methamphetamine, prescription drugs, and many other illegal substances. Drug convictions can happen to anyone, no matter their social class or profession.

A criminal conviction for any drug crime could cause you to face severe penalties including probation, hefty fines, and even a prison sentence depending on the types of drugs and the amount in question. A Police officer and other law enforcement officials in Chicago can sometimes “overcharge” your case.

The prosecution in Cook County is notorious for treating drug possession criminal charges like crimes of the century! If you have been arrested for a Chicago criminal drug charge or other drug-related criminal offenses, our Cook County drug crime lawyers can schedule free initial consultation today at 708-232-0017.

Why Should I Hire a Chicago Drug Lawyer After Drug Charges?

If you are a first-time drug offender, some public defenders may encourage you to plead guilty. However, the drug crime lawyers at Tommalieh Law aren't afraid to take your case to trial and avoid a criminal conviction to keep your public record clean. Although the criminal court will always choose lighter sentences for first-time drug offenders, this is also the reason it's essential to not be convicted in the first place.

Multiple drug convictions will incur severe penalties and prison time, all drug crimes should be defended at trial to avoid any sort of criminal conviction that can negatively affect your public criminal record. The Illinois Controlled Substance Act criminalizes knowing possession of illegal drugs. The Act also criminalizes the manufacture and distribution of these drugs. In Illinois, possession of illicit drugs is categorized as:

  • Possession of an illegal substance
  • Possession of a controlled substance or analog with the intent to manufacture or deliver 
Do You Need a Lawyer for Drug Charges in Chicago?

To get a criminal conviction, the prosecutor must prove the following without a reasonable doubt:

  • Type of controlled substance
  • The person knowingly possessed the illicit substance
  • The offender had the illegal substance in their exclusive control or immediate surroundings.

Don't forget that possessing illegal substances is grounds for a criminal conviction, but possessing a large amount of the illegal substance will attract harsher penalties. Thus, if you're charged with possession of an illicit substance, you should immediately contact a drug defense lawyer to represent you.

Learn More: Benefits of a Lawyer vs a Public Defender

What is the Difference Between Possession vs Possession with Intent to Deliver?

It's a scary experience if you're charged with drug possession in Illinois. However, there's a significant difference between possession with the intent to deliver and possession for personal consumption. If you're caught with a bag of Marijuana for personal use, you'll most probably get only a fine with the new federal drug laws in effect.

However, it's crucial to get a consultation from an attorney with experience in drug crime because the criminal penalty will vary depending on the type of substance you're caught with. To get a criminal conviction, you must knowingly have the unlawful drug in your exclusive control and immediate surroundings. This means if the illegal substance is found in your pocket, vehicle, or home, it's presumed yours and you can face criminal charges as a result. 

What Should You Do After Illegal Search and Seizure?

Sadly, many times police officers gather drug evidence through unlawful means because of an illegal search or illegal seizure. Our Cook County criminal law firm will thoroughly investigate all the details of your case to establish if the law enforcement officers illegally seized you, by performing an illegal stop of your car or yourself, or illegally searched your home or vehicle.

Did the police have a warrant? Was the search warrant valid? If the evidence against you was obtained illegally, our legal team will file motions to suppress that evidence to bar it from being used against you which typically results in the evidence being ruled inadmissible by the judge.

Inadmissible evidence can't be used by the prosecution or government, and thus filing a motion to suppress successfully will result in the prosecution being forced to dismiss its case against you. The Tinley Park criminal defense lawyers at Tommalieh have been successful in having many drug crime cases dismissed based on law enforcement officials violating the client’s fourth amendment rights to be free from unreasonable seizures or searches. 

You can rely on our skilled drug crime defense attorneys to build an aggressive defense strategy on your behalf. If the prosecution's case against you is weak, our aggressive drug crime defense lawyers will fight for dismissal. If the case against you is strong, we'll do everything we can to mitigate the consequences. 

The importance of hiring the right drug defense attorney can't be stressed enough. The defense strategy for drug charges must be developed from the very beginning. Unlike other types of criminal charges in Illinois, drug cases require a criminal defense strategy that focuses on the actual substance, instead of the actions of the defendant. Our drug defense attorney can offer you a free initial consultation concerning your drug-related arrest. To schedule, a no-cost initial consultation, contact our Tinley Park law office today at 708-232-0017

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