Drug trafficking in Oklahoma mostly likely means jail time for a person caught and convicted. Oklahoma is fierce about confronting drug dealers. And unlike mere possession, trafficking can mean enhanced prison sentences with no probation, suspension or deferral.
In Oklahoma, a conviction for drug trafficking can often depend more on how much of an illegal drug is seized, rather than proven intent to sell or share a substance. The intent to sell is inferred from the amount seized.
And in Oklahoma, it may not take a lot of a given substance to lead to a conviction as a drug trafficker. A surprisingly small amount of some illegal substances can land you in jail for drug trafficking even if you have no real intent to sell or distribute.
Illegal Drugs, Prescription Drugs, Controlled Dangerous Substances
Oklahoma uses a system of schedules to classify all drugs, including illegal and prescriptions drugs. These schedules ostensibly categorize drugs according to the level of risk of the substance balanced against medical use and necessity. Each classification carries its own penalties for possession, use, manufacture and distribution and trafficking. Ideally, the riskier the drug, the more carefully it is regulated and the harsher the penalty for illegal use and trafficking. Okla. Stat. tit. 63 §§ 2-204 et seq
What Constitutes Trafficking Under Oklahoma Law
Possession alone of enough of a Scheduled drug will be enough for a conviction under the law. Possession alone may be used to imply that you are a drug trafficker under the law. Other items such as possession of scales, packaging equipment, cash or business records can also be used to promote a jury’s inference that the defendant is guilty of trafficking illegal drugs.
How Much Is Enough?
So how much is enough? Not a lot in some cases. Here are some threshold amounts:
- Marijuana: 25 lbs
- LSD: 1 gram (a packet of sugar is approximately 1 gram)
- Cocaine: 28 grams
- Crack Cocaine: 5 grams
- Methamphetamine: 20 grams
- PCP (phencyclidine): 20 grams
- Ecstasy (MDMA): 10 grams/30 tablets
- Heroin: 10 grams
Illegal Search and Seizure
Oklahoma is a state that has gotten in trouble for the manner in which its officers stop and search vehicles traveling along its highways.
Here is a typical scenario. You are carrying some ecstasy for you and your friends for a big party you are all going to as you drive through Oklahoma. Your tail light is out and you get stopped on the freeway. The police ask to search your car and even though you decline, they separate you from your friends and start to ask questions of your friends, all the while looking and inspecting the interior of your car. Eventually, they spot a baggie tucked under the seat. Not only can you charged with possession, but the law will imply “trafficking” if the amount you are carrying meets the statutory requirement. However, if the search is deemed illegal at trial, the evidence against you may be inadmissible and the charges dismissed.
Many drug trafficking convictions happen as a result of an automobile stop and search. Wagoner defense lawyers say it over and over: if stopped, never give consent for a search. The lack of consent means that if the police search your car without probable cause to do so, any conviction for drugs found as a result may be overturned as a result of an illegal search. Illegal search and seizure form the basis for many of the defenses used in Oklahoma drug cases.
Instead of talking to the police, or giving consent to a search, contact an experienced Wagoner drug crimes attorney as soon as possible.
If you are convicted of drug trafficking, prison time is mandatory, even for a first offense. Beyond prison time, the fines are staggering. The penalties depend on the drug involved and the amount seized as evidence. It is possible to get a life sentence for possession of a sufficient quantity of any of these substances.
Here are some examples of fines that may be imposed:
- Marijuana: 25 lbs: up to $100,000;
- Methamphetamine: 20 grams: up to $200,000;
- Cocaine: 28 grams: up to $100,000;
- Heroin: 10 grams: up to $50,000;
- PCP: 20 grams: up to $100,000.
Aggravated Trafficking Penalties
Prison terms and fines escalate with repeated offenses and with increased amounts. For example, if you are caught with 1,000 lbs. of marijuana instead of 25 lbs. your fine may be as high as $500,000.
Finally, aggravated trafficking carries an increased minimum number of years in prison: at least 15 years. It is also subject to the 85% rule. A person must serve at least 85% of your prison term before being released.
Oklahoma’s drug laws and defenses are complicated. Contact an experienced Wagoner drug crimes attorney with any questions or concerns you may have, especially if you are being charged. Having experienced representation can mean the difference between freedom and years in prison.
Call For Your Free Consultation With An Experienced Felony Drug Crimes Defense Attorney
If convicted of drug trafficking in Oklahoma, you could spend the majority of the rest of your life in prison. It is critical that you hire an experienced Wagoner drug crimes defense attorney to protect your freedom.
Call us today for a free consultation with a Wagoner DUI defense attorney. Call the Wirth Law Office-Wagoner at (918) 485-0335 (or toll free at (888) Wirth-Law. Or as always, you may enter a legal question in the form at the top of this page and one of our attorneys will get right back to you.