Violations of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act (CDSA) are extremely serious. Even a simple possession charge can mean years in prison, especially if you are suspected of belonging to a criminal organization.
Our team helps with all drug charges, from a small, simple possession charge to major drug trafficking charges at the federal level.
There are several types of charges that we see. Keep in mind that the Crown has the option to stack charges on top of one another. For example, the crown might charge you both with drug production and with drug trafficking.
Possession charges cover the possession of drugs for your own use.
The Crown must prove you had both knowledge of the controlled substance, and knowledge of it.
You can be charged with possession even if the drugs weren’t on your person at the time of your arrest. You can be charged with possession even if you keep the drugs at a friend’s house.
The vast majority of the individuals who receive a possession charge receive the charge after traffic stops. This is helpful because it allows us to challenge the way that the police handled the stop and whether they actually had the right to search your person or your vehicle.
Penalties for possession include a maximum of 6 months in jail and fines of up to $1000 for a first offense, and up to one year in jails and fines of up to $2000 for subsequent offenses. However, for some clients Alternative Measures programs to address and treat drug addiction may be an option, and, if successful, will allow you to avoid criminal charges.
Drug Production Charges
If you’ve been charged with drug production you’re being accused of manufacturing or cultivating controlled substances, regardless of how you intended to use the drugs after they were manufactured or grown.
Penalties vary wildly depending on the type and quantity of drug you are accused of producing. The most serious sentences are reserved for Schedule I substances, which carries a mandatory minimum sentence of two years, but can be punished with life in prison.
Fortunately, there are a variety of ways that we can defend your case, and a variety of strategies we can use to attempt to get the charges dropped, dismissed, or reduced.
Possession for the Purposes of Trafficking
If you’re being charged with this crime you’re being accused of possessing drugs with the intention of selling them. The Crown must prove that you had knowledge of the drugs, control over the drugs, and that you intended to sell the drugs.
How can the Crown prove intent? Often the quantity of the drug will make all the difference, but the presence of certain paraphernalia can support their case. Paraphernalia can include baggies, scales, or large sums of money found in concert with the drugs.
PPT charges come with a mandatory minimum sentence of one year, and a maximum sentence of ten years.
These charges can be aggravated if the Crown finds that you were trafficking the drugs on behalf of a criminal organization. If you supported your trafficking activities with weapons, threats, or violence you can be charged with additional crimes. Sentences will be more serious if you trafficked the drug near a school, or used the services of a minor to help you commit the offense.
Our team will do everything we can do to reduce the severity of these charges, and will work hard to undermine the Crown’s case.
A trafficking charge is the most serious drug charge. If you are charged with trafficking you are being accused of moving drugs in a controlled, coordinated way, regardless of whether or not you made money on the transaction and regardless of whether the drugs crossed a national border. If the drugs crossed a national border, you can be charged with Importation as well.
You can be charged with trafficking for selling drugs, sharing drugs, offering to sell drugs, or serving as a middle man. Essentially, this is the charge you will face if you were caught selling drugs, as opposed to the PPT charge that you would face if the prosecution only has evidence that you intended to sell drugs.
The charges depend largely on the substances you’re being accused of selling, with Schedule I substances being the most serious, and Schedule IV substances being the least serious.
How are Drugs Classified in Canada?
The CDSA schedules are as follows:
- Schedule I – Heroin, cocaine, opium, oxycodone, morphine, fentanyl, meth, and amphetamines.
- Schedule II – All varieties of cannabis.
- Schedule III – LSD and psilocybins.
- Schedule IV – Barbiturates, diazepam, benzodiazepine, and steroids.
The schedule of the drug is not the only factor that matters in drug cases. The amount also matters. The more drugs in your possession, the more severe your charges are likely to be.
Why Choose Us for Your Regina, SK Drug Case?
Drug cases are complex, especially if you are being charged with anything other than simple possession.
Trafficking and drug production cases usually involve months of evidence-gathering prior to an arrest being made.
As your defence lawyers, we will dig deep into the evidence so that we can figure out how best to undermine the Crown’s case.
Our lawyers have a long track record of defending our clients against drug charges. We’ve been successful in helping some of our clients get their cases dropped or dismissed, or have secured deferred prosecution agreements that allow our clients to escape prison time and a criminal record. At times we can get charges reduced. If the case needs to go to trial, we go in deeply prepared so that we can give you your best chance at approval.
We’re responsive and communicative, and we ensure that you always know what’s going on with your case and what your options are. We’ll give you the advice that will help you make the difficult decisions you’ll face in the days ahead.
If you or a loved one need help, contact us today. Call (306) 848-7777 to schedule a case review.