The law on controlled substance such as heroin and opiates is quite severe in Texas. Possession of an amount less than one gram of any of the controlled drugs is punishable. Possession of the substances with intention to sell is even more serious, and may attract a greater penalty. Punishment is based on the amount of illegal substance found in your possession. If you’re charged with the offense of possession or delivery of heroin or opiates, you will need an experienced criminal defense lawyer like Paul Morgan to represent you, and ensure that your rights are protected at all times.
A Look at Heroin Laws in Texas
Heroin is classified as a dangerous drug in the state of Texas, and therefore, possession and distribution of the drug is prohibited by the law.
Avoiding Jail After an Arrest for Heroin
Possession of amounts less than 1 gram is described as a jail felony and is punishable by a jail term. However, the legislation created a drug court program in 2001. The program is aimed at helping first time offenders convicted with the state jail felony. Through the program, nonviolent offenders are offered probation instead of jail time.
During the probation period, the offenders are taken through a treatment program to help eliminate drug dependence. The court will assess the offenders after the period, and may drop the charges if the candidates show positive changes. Possession and distribution of more than one gram of heroin is a third degree felony for 1 to 4 grams, second degree felony for 4 to 200 grams and for over 400 grams, it is a first degree felony. Possession with intention to sell over 400 grams may lead to life imprisonment.
Defenses for Heroin Possession & Distribution Cases
Criminal cases require the prosecution to prove criminal responsibility on the accused person beyond reasonable doubt. Any doubt on the criminal culpability of the defendant is a window of opportunity for the accused. Since the burden of proof lies with the prosecution, a good criminal lawyer will help build a strong defense for you.
Opiates and Texas Law
An opiate is a drug derived or related to opium. Morphine and codeine are some of the most common examples of opiates. Opiates are used as prescription drugs to help patients with acute pain. Only a doctor or a clinician is allowed by law to prescribe the drugs to a patient. The law however, prohibits prescription of opiates to patients who are on active treatment of cancer or receiving hospice care from a licensed hospice or palliative care. Any other form of use apart from the said prescription is prohibited and punishable by law. If you’re charged with illegal possession or distribution of opiates, you will need a criminal defense lawyer to represent you. The lawyer will look at the available defenses and help you build a strong defense.
Crimes of drug possession and distribution are very serious in Texas. Without a good criminal lawyer, you may not escape a conviction. If you’ve been arrested and/or facing any drug-related charges, it is best to contact a good criminal defense lawyer with the necessary experience to advise you accordingly, and to represent you in court.