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Drug trafficking is one of the most serious, non-violent felonies someone can face charges for. However, many people are unaware of what warrants these charges and the subsequent penalties they can face if convicted. Unfortunately, many assume trafficking and possession charges are similar, which is far from the truth. The following blog explores what you must know about this crime and how a Georgia federal crime lawyer can represent you if you’ve been charged with this offense.

What Is Drug Trafficking?

Drug trafficking occurs when someone has a large quantity of drugs with the intent to sell, import, or distribute them. It’s important to understand that in a trafficking case, the amount or weight of a controlled substance someone possesses will determine the charge. This is because Georgia has different classifications or “schedules” for drugs. The schedules vary based on what kind of drug is in each category, such as whether or not it has acceptable medical uses.

In Georgia, the drug schedules are as follows:

  • Schedule 1 drugs, like heroin, LSD, or  ecstasy
  • Schedule 2 drugs, like Dilaudid, codeine, or Percocets
  • Schedule 3 drugs, like ketamine
  • Schedule 4 drugs, like Vallum or Xanax
  • Schedule 5 drugs, like Lyrica or Parapectolin

Unfortunately, due to the different dosages and mixtures of these drugs, the weight to warrant a trafficking charge will depend on the substance rather than the schedule. For example, 28 grams of cocaine continues a trafficking charge, while someone with only four grams of heroin will also face this charge.

What Are the Penalties for This Offense?

In Georgia, a drug trafficking charge will always be charged as a felony offense. However, the sentence will depend on the type of drug and the weight of the drug.

For example, 28 grams of cocaine is a minimum of 10 years in prison with a $200,000 fine, whereas 400 grams is a minimum of 25 years and a $1,000,000 fine.

However, you will generally face anywhere between 5 years to life in prison or drug trafficking in Georgia.

What Should I Do if I’m Facing Drug Trafficking Charges?

If you are facing drug trafficking charges in Georgia, the most important thing you can do is connect with a dedicated attorney to discuss the circumstances of your case. Though it may not seem like it, there are potential defenses your attorney can use based on your situation to help you evade charges.

Additionally, if you are placed under arrest, it’s in your best interest to remain silent. You should not speak to the police until you have consulted with your attorney.

At the Miller Law Practice, we understand the severity of these charges. That’s why our team is dedicated to doing everything possible to help you navigate these tough criminal offenses. Contact us today to discuss the details of your case with a member of our legal team.