June 28, 2010

Alcohol and Drug Crimes

There are a Number of Alcohol and Drug Crimes

alcohol and drug crimes

Alcohol, when used in excess, can lead to criminal conduct.

In Utah there are a multitude of alcohol and drug crimes, including DUIs. Being charged with a DUI in Utah is a serious matter. You should take your decision to hire an experienced Utah Criminal Defense Attorney seriously. At Utah Defenders, our DUI Attorneys are committed to protecting your rights. Utah Defenders is a Criminal Defense Law Firm that understands the legal process inside and out and will assemble a criminal defense team committed to your case and best interests. There are many different types of DUI cases and we can handle any and all types.  

  • First DUI Offense – This is the most basic of DUI offenses.  Some things that must be considered even with a first DUI is the possibility of at least 2 days in jail, having to put an interlock device on your car, and being alcohol restricted for a couple of years.
  • Second DUI Offense – The majority of people who get one DUI typically do not reoffend but for those who do the penalties increase and the judges and prosecutors become even less lenient.  An individual convicted of a second DUI is subject to minimum 10 days in jail.
  • Felony DUI – A DUI is a felony if it is a third DUI within a 10 year period.  The minimum jail time is 62.5 days.
  • DUI Metabolite (Measurable Controlled Substance) – Metabolite basically means a trace of an illegal drug.  So, if there is a trace of an illegal drug found in your blood or urine, you can get charged with this type of crime, which carries many of the same penalties as a regular alcohol related DUI.
  • DUI Tests – There are chemical tests and there are field sobriety tests, all of which come into play when law enforcement is trying to determine if you were driving under the influence.  How those tests were administered and performed will become important in your defense.
  • Refusal to Submit to DUI Chemical Test – Maybe even worse than being convicted of a DUI is the penalties associated with refusing to submit to a blood, breath, or urine test at the request of a law enforcement officer.  You’ll lose your driver’s license for a minimum of 18 months just for refusing.
  • Drivers License Hearing – In addition to your criminal case that you’ll have to defend against, you also have to defend yourself against losing your driver’s license, which is a separate action conducted by the Utah Driver’s License Division.

If you have been charged with a DUI, don’t delay in seeking competent legal representation. Email or call us today at 801.618.1334.

Representation for Drug Crimes

There are many alcohol and drug crimes in Utah.

The use of illegal drugs can result in felony charges.

Utah drug crimes carry some of the most severe penalties under the law. If you have been charged with a drug crime in Utah, you may be facing an extremely tough jury and aggressive prosecutor. The attorneys at Utah Defenders are committed to protecting the rights of individuals in Utah accused of drug crimes such as:

  • Marijuana Possession – Most people are charged with possessing less than an ounce, which can still carry up to 6 months in jail if convicted.
  • Possession of Hard Drugs – Hard drugs include heroin, cocaine, and meth.  Just possessing these types of illegal substances is a felony so the stakes are much higher if you get caught with these types of drugs.
  • Paraphernalia Possession – Anything can be considered paraphernalia: apples, baggies, pipes, rolling papers, spoons, syringes, plastic containers, metal containers, basically anything because law enforcement can craft up some way that a defendant was possibly using an item to use, store, or hold drugs.
  • Possession with Intent to Distribute – This felony charge comes into play when the person being arrested is found to have a large amount of a certain drug, such as 10lbs of pot, or a pound of meth.  The law assumes that you could not use so much for personal use so you must be selling it.  The law is much harsher on dealers than it is on users.
  • Drug Distribution – These charges often times come about when the police use a confidential informant (CI) to do controlled buys, a set-up if you will.  The CI sets up buys under circumstances that allow law enforcement to witness the deal, making it easy to then arrest the dealer.
  • Drug Production – The law often calls this running a “clandestine drug laboratory” such as cooking meth or mixing spice.  Judges love to hand down prison sentences for people who run drug labs.
  • Traffic Stop Drug Bust – You’d be surprised how many cases we see that involves a person getting pulled over by the cops for a ridiculous little traffic infraction, which then results in a search of the vehicle and finding drugs.  Law enforcement must follow the law as well, and they often don’t when conducting a search on a vehicle.
  • Prescription Drugs – Perhaps you had surgery and developed a dependence on pain killers.  Happens all the time, but if you get caught you face the same penalties as someone caught with heroin.
  • Prescription Forgery – Dependence on prescription drugs often leads to other crimes such as forging a doctor’s prescription in order to get the drugs.  Forging a prescription is a felony crime, so in that situation you’re not only facing felony charges in one case for using illegal prescription drugs but now you’re facing felony charges for the way in which you went about getting those drugs.

Drug “crimes” are usually anything but, because there is typically no victim. The government is simply prohibiting the production, sale, and use of a product, which if the government knew anything about economics it would stop the prohibition immediately because it is the prohibition that creates the crime.  The whole philosophy behind drug crimes is one of the reasons why we fight so hard for our clients who are being charged with such crimes.

Call now to speak with a lawyer about any offense you may be battling at 801.618.1334. You can also email us anytime.

Alcohol Laws in Utah Relating to Minors

As many Utahns know, Utah has many unique and tough alcohol laws. Many individuals, including adults and minors, are charged with alcohol related crimes in Utah every year. Utah has a large college student and young tourist population. The lawyers at Utah Defenders represent individuals charged with juvenile and alcohol charges in Utah. 

  • Juvenile Crimes – Any crime that an adult can commit can be committed by a juvenile, but the difference is that juveniles are prosecuted in quasi-criminal action in juvenile court, not district court.  In such cases the juvenile can be ordered to go to detention, but not jail.  Additionally, juveniles do not get a jury, only a judge.
  • Unlawful Consumption of Alcohol – This is a favorite of high school partiers, but when they get caught they have to go to court.  We defend minors against these charges all the time.
  • Underage DUI – It is exactly what is says: if you’re under 21 and get caught driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, you’ll lose your license till you’re 21 and in some cases even longer.

We offer free consultations. Call now to discuss the charges for any alcohol and drug crimes with one of our experienced attorneys. 801.618.1334. Our attorneys are always available by email.