When people hear the phrase “drug trafficking,” they tend to think of drug lords, wads of cash, and SUVs with trunks full of bags of white powder. Drug dealers get arrested when an undercover police officer infiltrates the gang, and the police descend on the scene of a deal, where there's always a firefight. This is understandable, because that's how drug trafficking is often shown in movies, or in TV shows that people think are fairly accurate, like Law and Order. However, the reality of drug trafficking is much, much more low key.
It's important to note, first, that drug trafficking can be either a state or a federal crime, or both. In this post, we're only dealing with drug trafficking in the state of Maine. We'll touch on federal drug crimes in a later article.
The state of Maine makes it illegal for people to knowingly “traffick” drugs. The word “traffick,” however, means a lot of different things, and encompasses much more than many people are aware of. It means to make or create, grow or cultivate, sell or exchange, and also to possess drugs in order to sell or exchange them. “Traffick” also includes just having certain amounts of specific drugs, like more than two grams of heroin. Because of this wide range of activities that falls within the word “traffick,” it can be surprisingly easy to get caught in the nasty web of drug charges in the state of Maine.
However, these aren't the only ways to find yourself on the wrong end of a drug trafficking charge in Maine. There are also what are called “presumptive trafficking scenarios” that can get you in trouble, as well. Simply having, and knowing that you have, over a specified amount of certain drugs can result in drug trafficking charges, regardless of what you were going to do with them. Therefore, it can be inferred that you were trafficking in drugs if prosecutors can prove that you had either:
- More than one pound of marijuana,
- Fourteen or more grams of cocaine,
- Four or more grams of cocaine base,
- Fourteen or more grams of methamphetamine,
- 90 or more pills of any narcotic, other than heroin,
- 800 or more milligrams of Oxycodone,
- 100 or more milligrams of hydromorphone, or
- 30 or more pills of either MDMA, or drugs similar to MDMA
If you're arrested and found to have enough of any of these drugs in your possession, it won't matter what you were planning on doing with them, as the prosecutor can use the drug amounts to attempt to prove that you intended to sell or exchange them. If the prosecutor is successful, you'll be convicted for drug trafficking, simply because of the amount that you had at the time of your arrest is presumptive for drug trafficking.
Drug trafficking charges are serious, and can lead to life-altering criminal convictions if you don't have a top-notch criminal defense attorney fighting for you in court. Call the law office of William T. Bly at (207) 571-8146.