Milton Drug Offence Lawyer
In Canada, drug offences are set out in the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act (“CDSA”). The CDSA is a federal statute and is therefore applicable throughout Canada. Unlike most criminal code offences, drug offences are prosecuted by the Public Prosecution Service of Canada (PPSC).
The CDSA has 4 ‘schedules’ that categorize drugs and substances. The categories assist not only in the classification of drugs and substances but also assist in determining sentencing ranges. Schedule I substances are considered to be the most illicit; Schedule II substances less so; and so on. The way to establish/prove that the drug or substance is a Scheduled substance is by a ‘Certificate of Analysis’.
Drug offences are serious offences that have significant repercussions, not only to one’s personal life but to one’s family life as well. Being found guilty of, for example, ‘possession for the purpose of trafficking’, or ‘possession of a controlled substance’, can impact career prospects and infringe upon one’s liberty as CDSA charges carry mandatory minimum imprisonment sentences. Sentences are often determined by the quantity of the substance found in the possession of the accused. Hiring a trafficking/possession lawyer can have a significant impact on the way in which your case proceeds through the courts.
Possession of a Substance – S. 4 CDSA
This is one of the most common CDSA charges as it pertains to possession of drugs or substances for personal use. This section prohibits possession of Schedule I, II, or III substances unless one is authorized to possess such substances. Possession is defined in S. 4 (3) of the Criminal Code of Canada. It states that a person has anything in their possession when he has it in his personal possession, or, knowingly has it in the possession or custody of another person. Possession requires control over the substance and knowledge of the nature of the substance in question. Constructive and joint possession are other forms of legal possession that qualify as possession in the context of this offence.
Trafficking in a Substance – S. 5 CDSA
This section, possession for the purpose of trafficking, prohibits the trafficking of any substance included in Schedule I, II, III, IV, or V. Section 2 of the CDSA sets out the definition of ‘traffic’ as: to sell; administer; give; transfer; transport; send; or, deliver the substance, to sell an authorization to obtain the substance, or to offer to do any of these things. Intent to traffic is usually inferred from the quantity/quality of the drug the accused has. Quantity is usually not enough to establish guilt, but other facts of the case can be used in conjunction to demonstrate intent to traffic, such as, large amounts of money, or drug paraphernalia.
Importing and Exporting a Substance – S. 6 CDSA
This section prohibits the importing or exporting of any Schedule I, II, III, IV, V or VI substance into Canada unless authorized under the regulations to do so.
Why Retain Passi & Patel Criminal Lawyers?
If you, a friend or a loved one, are charged with any drug-related offence, our Milton criminal lawyers are here to assist you. This is a complex area of law and often involves search warrants, expert analysis and testimony and informants/undercover officers. Being found guilty has serious repercussions such as, travel restrictions; a criminal record; and, impacts to one’s career and personal and family life. CDSA offences are subject to mandatory minimum sentences. Another collateral consequence for a drug offence is forfeiture of the proceeds of crime. The police can seize property upon arrest that they believe is associated with the offence for which a person is being charged. This causes significant hardship for many as personal items can be seized, or accounts frozen, making it extremely difficult to pay for day-to-day expenses or hire a lawyer.
The consequences of being found guilty of a drug offence are long-lasting, if not permanent. Our Milton criminal lawyers have extensive experience in drug-related offences, including possession and possession for the purpose of trafficking. We will take all the necessary steps to obtain the best possible result.
Contact Passi & Patel Criminal Lawyers today to get the process started with a no-obligation consultation.