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Tag Archives: drug-related crimes

Illinois drug defense lawyersIn 2011, the State Attorney for LaSalle County created the State’s Attorney Felony Enforcement Unit (SAFE). In the roughly four years that it operated, the unit managed to confiscate over $1.7 million from Illinois drivers. They also filed more than 50 civil forfeiture cases and arrested 77 people on drug charges. The Illinois Supreme Court recently ruled that all acts – including those tied to criminal cases – were wrongful. The reason? The task force should never have existed. Learn more about what this could mean for your drug conviction case, and how an experienced criminal defense lawyer may be able to help.

Abuse of Power Rampant in SAFE Squad

Law enforcement is supposed to be a government entity, meaning it should operate and act within the law. Unfortunately, the SAFE Unit failed to do this. Not only did the Illinois Supreme Court rule that they had wrongfully searched the vehicles of Illinois drivers, but they also operated in a for-profit way. Funds from seizures were used to purchase everything from conferences in Las Vegas to office furniture, patrol cars, and even employee salaries.

What the Ruling Could Mean for Your Case

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drug possession, DuPage County drug possession defense attorneyHaving a charge on your criminal record for any crime can be life-altering. However, drug-related crimes have exceptionally stronger impacts than lesser crimes. Not only is there the legal punishment that comes from conviction, but there are also secondary consequences to consider. For instance, you may lose your government funding for higher education in addition to losing your employment and livelihood. Consider contacting an attorney to reduce or avoid penalties.

Drug Schedules

Although it may sound like what time of day to take your doctor-prescribed medications, drug schedules in the legal sense are a factor used in determining penalties issued for drug crimes. Schedules were created to categorize the potency of the drug, the proclivity for addiction and abuse, and whether or not the substance has any medical usages. The current schedule is set as follows, starting with the least severe:

  • Schedule V: Drugs in this category—Robitussin-AC, codeine, etc.—have a small likelihood of addiction, are used for medical purposes, and contain limited quantities of narcotics.
  • Schedule IV: These substances have a low potential for addiction and are prescribed for medical purposes. Examples include Xanax and Valium.
  • Schedule III: These drugs also have a low potential for abuse but alternately a moderate risk for physical or psychological dependence. These drugs include Vicodin and Tylenol with codeine.
  • Schedule II: This category has legitimate medical uses but is found to have a high level of abuse and is extremely likely to create a dependence. Prescriptions include OxyContin and Percocet.
  • Schedule I: This is the most severe and does not have any accepted medical usages. These are opiates or are derived from opiates and are highly likely to be abused. Heroin, LSD, and ecstasy all fall into this category.

Other Influential Factors

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