First offense felony drug charges in Texas can lead to serious consequences and a permanent mark on your criminal record. If you have been charged with a drug offense, you are likely worried about incarceration, fines, and more. However, there are other options. You may be able to avoid the harshest consequences and obtain the best outcome possible. Call Hoeller & McLaughlin PLLC at (877) 208-3382 for help with your case.
Federal Drug Charges in Texas
Many first offense felony drug charges are federal offenses in Texas. Those are crimes that could fall under the jurisdiction of the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA). The DEA is a federal law enforcement agency that focuses on felony drug crimes. Common federal drug charges include:
- Drug conspiracy
- Possession of a controlled substance
- Drug trafficking
- Drug manufacturing
Drug crimes that may be charged as federal offenses may occur on federal property or across state lines. Federal crimes may also involve an undercover federal agent who investigated the situation. If drugs were sold to someone under the age of 21 or in a school zone, the crime may also be federal.
Federal Drug Crime Penalties
The difference between state and federal drug charges may be the severity of the penalties. Many federal crimes have mandatory minimum sentences that allow the judge little discretion when assigning a punishment. While this policy was instated to crack down on drug crimes nationwide, it often results in unnecessary sentences for first time offenders.
Federal drug crime sentences will take into account mitigating and/or aggravating factors. If someone was harmed, a weapon was involved, or the offender has an extensive criminal record, the sentence may be more severe.
Federal Drug Conspiracy
Prosecutors often alleged that the accused was involved in federal drug conspiracy. It is often an initial charge or added on with other charges. Federal drug conspiracy means an agreement between two or more people to commit a drug-related crime. This allegation may be made even if the crime itself was never committed.
For a federal drug conspiracy case, the prosecutor must show:
- There was an agreement to violate or break the law
- Each person charged knew about the agreement
- At least one action was taken to further the conspiracy
First Time Federal Drug Trafficking Penalties
Drug trafficking may involve many different types of drugs, including heroin, LSD, fentanyl, cocaine, PCP, or methamphetamine. The penalties depend on the amount and schedule of the drug involved in your alleged crime.
You may face the following first-time offense penalties:
- Up to 40 years in prison
- If death or serious bodily injury occurred to someone, then up to life in prison
- A fine of up to several million dollars
The higher the quantity of the drug, the more severe the penalties involved. If a drug is a Schedule I, which means there is no accepted medicinal use and it is highly addictive, the penalty will be more severe than a Schedule V drug. For more information about your specific situation, you should consult a felony drug lawyer to answer your legal questions.
First Offense Felony Drug Charges in Texas Can Lead to Severe Penalties
If this is your first encounter with the criminal justice system, you may be confused and unsure of what to do next. Your best action is to call an attorney before speaking with the police. The cops will try to make you think they are your friends. Do not listen to their lies. Instead, call Hoeller & McLaughlin PLLC at (877) 208-3382. We have helped countless people manage their criminal charges successfully.