Pasadena Criminal Defense Specialists
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Cocaine Crimes
Drug Conspiracy
Drug Cultivation
Drug Manufacturing
Drug Possession
Drug Possession with Intent to Sell
Drug Trafficking
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DUI & Drugs
Ecstasy
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Heroin
Medical Marijuana
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Possession of Drug Paraphernalia
Prescription Drug Crimes
Rehabilitation/Alternative Sentencing
Search and Seizure
Under the Influence

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Kestenbaum, Eisner & Gorin

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS: DRUG CRIMES

  1. Is jail mandatory in all drug crime cases? For some individuals, the abuse of drugs leads to participating in drug sales, or committing violent criminal acts, in order to support the drug habit. Beating the habit, through a court-approved treatment program, will not only end the client's addiction but may also lead to getting a complete dismissal of drug crime charges in the courtroom. Our law firm has worked with numerous treatment providers and can direct you to one near your residence, even in cases involving initial allegation of drug sales. In sum, for most drug offense clients, incarceration is really the last option.

  2. What should I do after an arrest? Immediately ask to call an attorney. Do not say anything to the police that could incriminate you. Even if you are innocent and were in no way involved in the crime for which you have been arrested, ask for an attorney and do not speak to the police without a criminal defense attorney present

  3. What is the difference between a felony and a misdemeanor? The definition of a felony in California is a crime that is punishable by imprisonment for 16 months or more. A misdemeanor is a crime that is punishable by imprisonment in the county jail of one year or less. Felony convictions are more serious crimes than misdemeanors, as they frequently require formal felony probation, supervision by a probation officer, the loss of certain civil liberties (voting, serving on jury, possessing a firearm) and the possibility of state prison.

  4. How does bail work? Bail is financial assurance that a defendant will return to court after being released from custody. There are two ways to post bail. First, "cash" bail may be posted with the custodial agency to cover the entire amount of the bail. At the end of the case, if bail is exonerated, the defendant will receive a check for the entire amount posted (takes about 8-10 weeks). Second, a "bond" through a bail company may be posted. A defendant pays about 10% of the entire amount to a bail company, which puts up the entire bail amount through a bond. The premium payment is not returned to the defendant after the case ends.

  5. What is an arraignment? Arraignment is the initial court proceeding where a defendant is advised of his charges, and usually enters a "Not Guilty" plea. This proceeding is not a trial, and witnesses do not come forward to testify. It provides defense counsel an opportunity to obtain the police reports, and time to begin a case investigation.

  6. If I was arrested for a felony, does that mean I will face felony charges in court? A prosecutor makes an independent decision on what charges to file. After some arrests, prosecutors choose to file misdemeanor offenses, rather than felonies, causing the bail to be reduced.

  7. What if my rights were violated? A criminal defense attorney will seek to exclude evidence obtained as a result of police misconduct. At times, police misconduct occurs in searches that take place during ordinary traffic stops or in a suspect's home. Additionally, if law enforcement is too aggressive in trying to obtain an incriminating statement from a suspect, it may violate the suspect's Miranda rights. Litigation in the criminal court allows a defense lawyer to protect his client's rights by submitting motions to the judge seeking to exclude the recovered evidence or received statements. Often a successful motion to suppress leads to dismissal of all criminal charges.

  8. If the defendant is not a U.S. citizen, how will the immigration status be affected by an arrest? Criminal convictions may cause direct and grave consequences to someone's immigration status, often leading to deportation proceedings. The INS guidelines are often very complex and our criminal defense attorneys frequently confer with immigration law specialists to properly advise clients. Before going to court, our criminal lawyers assess with clients their deportation risks. Frequently our Los Angeles attorneys request charges that are not considered by the INS as moral turpitude offenses (which are subject to deportation), and to convert any possible custody time to community service work. In Los Angeles, the L.A. County Sheriff's Department is responsible for running the jails and verifying immigration status upon receiving an inmate, frequently causing INS holds to be placed on the inmate.

  9. State v. Federal Court, what is the difference in criminal defense issues? Federal court cases are typically investigated by federal agencies, including the FBI, DEA, Customs, Treasury, and other federal agencies. Sometimes state and local agencies also file charges in federal court if the offenses involve major quantity of drugs, weapons or other contraband. The federal government has more resources to prosecute cases, including special units to prosecute drugs, fraud, and violent crimes. While the state and local government also has special units, they have fewer prosecutors with larger case loads. For the most part, it is definitely in a criminal defendant's interest to be prosecuted in state, rather than federal court. The state of California's sentencing system has more flexibility in terms of alternative sentencing options and typically does not carry the "heavy hand" of the United States Sentencing Guidelines in large drug seizure cases.

  10. Why should I hire Eisner Gorin LLP? Our legal team is comprised of aggressive defense attorneys that are Former Los Angeles Prosecutors. Our criminal defense attorneys have over 50 years of collective courtroom experience and we are fully prepared to undertake our clients' cases. When we work with our clients, we do everything possible to make sure that they receive the attention, resources, and dedicated legal counsel that they deserve. We seek to keep our clients out of jail through Alternative Sentencing programs and to expunge their criminal records so that the weight of a criminal conviction, if not avoided, can be lifted. These are some of the reasons why we have been recognized as a Top 5% U.S. Law Firm year after year. CALL US IMMEDIATELY FOR A FREE CONSULTATION 877-781-1570.

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