Drug Trafficking 

Drug trafficking applies to any person who is delivering or selling controlled substances. Drug crimes in Ohio carry heavy penalties and the crime of drug trafficking is no exception. Joslyn Law Firm is here to help. We are an award-winning law firm and have handled hundreds of criminal cases in Ohio. We can help you too.

Ohio Revised Code § 2925.03 states any person selling, offering to sell, shipping, transporting, delivering, or distributing a controlled substance is committing a crime. Drug trafficking charges can happen to a small-time dealer or the head of an underground drug business.

If you or someone you know has been charged with trafficking drugs, contact a criminal defense attorney at our firm right away. With our experience and resources, our firm can protect your rights and build a case to get charges dropped or reduced. Our staff is award-winning and dedicated to your success.

Cincinnati Attorney for Drug Trafficking in Ohio

If convicted for drug trafficking, a person may face incarceration and large fines. Additionally, Ohio does not limit a "sale" to drugs exchanged for cash. If a person transfers, gifts, or barters for a controlled substance he or she can still be charged with drug trafficking.

Our attorneys are compassionate with clients and aggressive in the courtroom. We believe that everyone is entitled to a fair trial in the face of criminal charges. The attorneys at Joslyn Law Firm practice law with dedication and efficiency. Managing attorney Brian Joslyn exemplifies our legal excellence through his ranking as one of the 10 best criminal defense lawyers by the National Academy of Criminal Defense Attorneys.

The attorneys at Joslyn Law Firm represent those accused of drug trafficking throughout the greater Hamilton County area and surrounding cities including Cincinnati, Georgetown, Wilmington, Blue Ash, Cheviot, Fairfield, and Springdale.

Call us today or submit an online contact form to schedule a consultation today.

Ohio Drug Crimes Information Center 


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Ohio Drug Trafficking Charges Overview 

With Senate Bill 3 (SB3), a sentencing reform bill, Ohio legislators have set their sights on imposing harsher drug trafficking penalties. With this new legislation, the burden of proof for prosecutors involves merely proving that an individual is guilty of either possessing large quantities of drugs or of intending to distribute or sell any quantity of heroin. In addition, if courts convict a person of high-level trafficking, that person faces a mandatory prison sentence under the new legislation.

If you have been arrested or are being questioned or investigated for drug trafficking in Cincinnati, understand the focus that city, county, state, and federal drug enforcement officials are placing on eliminating the drug trafficking problems in Ohio. 

Now, more than ever, individuals accused of drug trafficking in Cincinnati must take the prospect of being charged and convicted very seriously. A Cincinnati drug trafficking lawyer can help guide you through the process that lies ahead, ensure your rights are protected, and work to achieve the best outcome for your case.

Call Joslyn Law Firm today at (614) 444-1900 to learn more. We will take your case as seriously as you do, because we know what you are going through. Our mission is to help people in your position. We have helped thousands of people. Let us help you too.

 


 

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Definition of Drug Trafficking Crimes

To understand the scope of drug trafficking as it is viewed by the Ohio criminal justice system, you should be aware of how the law defines various drug trafficking terms. These definitions appear in Chapter 3719.01 of the Ohio Revised code, but we will review the most relevant here.

  • Administer: To apply a drug to a person or animal via injection, inhalation, ingestion, or some other technique.
  • Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA): S. Department of Justice agency in charge of administering federal laws as they pertain to drug trafficking and distribution.
  • Controlled substance: Any substance, drug, preparation, mixture, or compound that has been classified as a schedule I, II, III, IV, or V substance.
  • Controlled substance analog: Substances that, from a chemical standpoint, bear similarity to schedule I or II controlled substances and which impact the central nervous system at least as much as a schedule I or II controlled substance and which are designed to or are suggested as having the same effects.
  • Dangerous drug: Prescription drugs, or those that contain the following label: "Caution: Federal law prohibits dispensing without prescription" or "Caution: Federal law restricts this drug to use by or on the order of a licensed veterinarian." It can also refer to substances that contain a schedule V controlled substance ingredient, but which are exempt from Chapter 3719 of the Revised Code).
  • Dispense: To sell, pass on, deliver, give away, exchange, or get rid of. 
  • Distribute: To deliver, deal, ship, transfer, or transport (but not administer or dispense) a controlled substance.
  • Drug: Substances that the U.S pharmacopeia and national formulary define and which are meant to prevent, treat, diagnose, cure, or mitigate a disease. Substances that affect the way in which the body is structured or how it functions. 
  • Federal drug abuse control laws: The amended Comprehensive Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Act of 1970 (84 Stat. 1242, 21 U.S.C. 801).
  • Manufacturer: Someone who makes controlled substances 
  • Marihuana: Every part of a plant classified as part of the cannabis genus (does not include stalks, non-resin-containing parts, and hemp)
  • Narcotic drugs: Substances like opium, coca leaves, amidone, isoamidone, ketobemidone, isonipecaine, and others that are covered by federal drug abuse control laws (includes drugs similar in chemistry to these substances). 
  • Trafficking: Selling or offering to sell a controlled substance or the preparation of a controlled substance for distribution, delivery, shipping, or transport, fully knowing that the intention is to sell or resell the drug to another party
  • Sale: Exchange, barter, transfer, delivery, or proposing any of the same, along with the actual execution of the transaction.
  • "Schedule I," "Schedule II," "Schedule III," "Schedule IV," and "Schedule V": Controlled substances established under section 41 of the Ohio Revised Code, as amended in sections 3719.43or 3719.44 of the Revised Code, or as specified by emergency rule under section 3719.45 of the Revised Code. 

 


 

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Ohio Controlled Substance Schedules

Drug offense penalties are normally defined by the amount of controlled substance and the schedule it is categorized under. Drug schedules are classifications based on the drug's acceptable medical use, drug abuse, and dependency potential. Drug schedules are listed under the Controlled Substances Act under federal law.

The crime of drug trafficking determines the sentencing based on the drug schedule. Note that the lower the Schedule is (Schedule I or II) the higher the risk of abuse.

  • Schedule V
    • Lowest potential for abuse and has limited quantities of certain narcotics. Usually these drugs are used for antidiarrheal, antitussive, and analgesic purposes.
      • Examples are: Robitussin, Lomotin, Lyrica, Motofen, Parepectolin. 
  • Schedule IV
    • These drugs have a low potential for abuse and low risk of dependence.
      • Examples are: Darvon, Valium, Ativan, Ambien, Talwin, Xanax, Tramadol, Darvocet, Soma.
  • Schedule III
    • Drugs under Schedule III have a moderate to low potential for psychological and physical dependence.
      • Examples are: Tylenol with codeine, ketamine, anabolic steroids, testosterone.
  • Schedule II
    • These drugs have a high potential for abuse. Use can lead to severe psychological and physical dependence.
      • Examples are: Vicodin, cocaine, methadone, fentanyl, meperidine, hyrdomorphone, methamphetamine, oxycodone, Dexedrine, Ritalin, and Adderall. 
  • Schedule I
    • Drugs that are Schedule I have the highest potential for abuse and are not currently accepted for any medical use.
      • Examples are: Marijuana, heroin, lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), methylenedioxymethamphetamine (ecstasy), peyote, and methaqualone.

 


 

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Common Drug Trafficking Crimes in Ohio

 There are two types of drug trafficking under Ohio Revised Code § 2925.01. The standard drug trafficking, and aggravated drug trafficking. These two classifications are based on whatever Schedule the controlled substance falls under, or whether aggravating factors existed such as whether the offense happened within the proximity of a school, a juvenile, or a church. A person charged with aggravated drug trafficking will have harsher penalties.

The following Schedules that define standard drug trafficking includes:

  • Schedule III
  • Schedule IV
  • Schedule V

The following Schedules, except for marijuana, cocaine, LSD, heroin, hashish, and analogs that define aggravated drug trafficking includes:

  • Schedule II
  • Schedule I

If the alleged drug trafficking occurs across state lines, it becomes a federal offense.

 


 

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Defenses to Drug Trafficking in Ohio

Cincinnati drug trafficking lawyers have at their disposal a number of defenses they can use to counter charges against you. The defense your lawyer uses depends on the circumstances of your case. If used strategically, these defenses can result in softer sentences, reduced charges, or complete dismissal of the charges.

Illegally Obtained Evidence

One defense your lawyer should look into is to argue that the evidence against you was illegally obtained by investigators. With the right evidence, your lawyer can file a motion to suppress the evidence.

If the suppressed evidence constitutes a vital aspect of your case, chances are, the judge will dismiss the case.

Lack of Knowledge

With this defense, your lawyer will argue that you were not aware of the presence or whereabouts of the controlled substances that police found and for which you were arrested.

The prosecutor has the burden of proof in this area. They must prove that you knew the drugs were wherever police found them. This defense often comes into play when drugs are discovered in hidden compartments or in a car, hotel room, or apartment that does not belong to the defendant.

Affirmative Defense of Entrapment

With an affirmative defense, your lawyer will not argue that you were trafficking drugs. Rather, your attorney will present to the court that police, the government, or other agents persuaded or coerced you and provided the opportunity for you to commit the offense of which you stand accused.

With this defense, your lawyer must prove that you were influenced by such parties to behave in a way contrary to your nature.

Mitigation

Sometimes, the best defense a drug trafficking lawyer can pursue is one of mitigating circumstances. Perhaps drug smugglers threatened your family with physical harm if you would not participate in the trafficking activity. If your lawyer can convince the judge or jury that your role in the drug trafficking was less than what police understood it to be, you might benefit from a sentence that is less than the minimum mandatory sentence for your offense.

A Cincinnati drug trafficking lawyer from Joslyn Law Firm will investigate every element of your case, including how police investigated and gathered evidence. We will work to protect your rights as you proceed through the criminal justice system. Call us today at (614) 444-1900.

You have rights that we will work to protect. Count on us to tell your story and strive for justice. We will study your case and the evidence available in order to communicate the facts.

 


 

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Ohio Penalties for Drug Trafficking Offenses 

Often drug trafficking charges will result in felony charges. A felony conviction is a high level of offense. Those who face felony charges may have to pay hefty fines and spend a period of time in prison. Additionally, he or she may have their driver's license suspended for up to five years.

Some of the most commonly trafficked drugs are cocaine, LSD, heroin, hashish, and marijuana. The following are the penalties for possession of certain controlled substances under Ohio law.

Heroin

 

Amount of Heroin

 

Level of Offense

 

Maximum Fine

 

Maximum Prison Time

1 to 5 Grams

4th Degree Felony

$5,500 Fine

Up to 18 Months in Prison

5 to 10 Grams

3rd Degree Felony

$10,000 Fine

Up to 5 Years in Prison

10 to 50 Grams

2nd Degree Felony

$15,000 Fine

Up to 8 Years in Prison

50 to 250 Grams

1st Degree Felony

$20,00 Fine

Up to 10 Years in Prison

Greater than 250 Grams

1st Degree Felony

$2,500 Fine

Up to 11 Years in Prison & Mandatory Prison Term


Cocaine

 

Amount of Cocaine

 

Level of Offense

 

Maximum Fine

 

Maximum Prison Time

5 to 10 Grams

4th Degree Felony

$5,500 Fine

Up to 18 Months in Prison

10 to 20 Grams

3rd Degree Felony

$10,000 Fine

Up to 5 Years in Prison

20 to 27 Grams

2nd Degree Felony

$15,000 Fine

Up to 8 Years in Prison

27 to 99 Grams

1st Degree Felony

$20,000 Fine

Up to 10 Years in Prison

100 Grams or More

1st Degree Felony

$20,00 Fine

Up to 11 Years in Prison & Mandatory Prison Term


Marijuana

 

Amount of Marijuana

 

Level of Offense

 

Maximum Fine

 

Maximum Prison Time

200 to 999 Grams

4th Degree Felony

$5,500 Fine

Up to 18 Months in Prison

1000 to 4999 Grams

3rd Degree Felony

$10,000 Fine

Up to 5 Years in Prison

5000 to 19,999 Grams

3rd Degree Felony

$10,000 Fine

Up to 5 Years in Prison

20,000 to 39,999 Grams

2nd Degree Felony

$15,000 Fine

Up to 8 Years in Prison

40,000 Grams or More

2nd Degree Felony

$20,00 Fine

Up to 11 Years in Prison & Mandatory Prison Term

 

LSD

Take note, LSD is measured in unit doses for LSD's solid form and grams for LSD's liquid form.

 

Amount of LSD

 

Level of Offense

 

Maximum Fine

 

Maximum Prison Time

10 to 49 Unit Doses

 

1 to 4 Grams

4th Degree Felony

$5,500 Fine

Up to 18 Months in Prison

50 to 249 Unit Doses

 

5 to 24 Grams

3rd Degree Felony

$10,000 Fine

Up to 5 Years in Prison

250 to 999 Unit Doses

 

25 to 99 Grams

2nd Degree Felony

$15,000 Fine

Up to 8 Years in Prison

1000 to 4999 Unit Doses

 

100 to 499 Grams

1st Degree Felony

$20,000 Fine

Up to 10 Years in Prison

5000 or More Unit Doses

 

500 Grams or More

1st Degree Felony

$20,00 Fine

Up to 11 Years in Prison & Mandatory Prison Term

 

Understand that there are certain circumstances that can enhance these penalties. If the offense happened in the vicinity of a school or juvenile, the penalties will be enhanced up a degree. Additionally, if the alleged offender has prior felony drug convictions his or her penalties may be enhanced.

Major Drug Offenders (MDO) as Defined by Ohio Laws

Throughout Ohio, individuals convicted as major drug offenders (MDO) are charged with felonies of the first degree—with a mandatory, 11-year prison sentence. Under Ohio Revised Code § 2929.01(W), you will qualify as an MDO if police find you in possession of the following:

Hashish

1000 g

Cocaine

100 g

Heroin

1000 unit doses or 100 g

LSD

5000 unit doses or 500 g

Controlled substance analog

50 g

Fentanyl-related compound

1000 unit doses or 100 g

Other schedule I or II controlled substances other than marihuana

At least 100 times amount necessary to constitute third-degree felony

 

 


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Collateral Consequences of Drug Trafficking Conviction in Ohio


There is much more to a drug trafficking conviction than the penalties passed down by a judge. If convicted of such an offense in Ohio, you face a litany of collateral consequences, legal disabilities, and civil penalties that accompany such a conviction. These consequences can touch every aspect of your life. Many endure a lifetime.

Some collateral consequences stem from court rules or Ohio statutes. Others come down from a variety of administrative regulations. You can review a report by the Center for Criminal Justice Research, Collateral Consequences of Criminal Conviction in Ohio, to review the full range of collateral consequences that accompany convictions in the state. The researchers also reveal how these consequences affected convicted criminals through the course of their lives, even after they had served their sentences.

According to the report, a search for collateral consequences in the Ohio Revised Code generates more than 3,300 matches. These consequences restrict a person’s:

  • Employment
  • Driver’s license
  • Custody rights
  • Immigration
  • Education
  • Business licenses
  • Housing
  • Government benefits
  • Employment
  • Professional licenses
  • Political and civic participation
  • Recreational licenses
  • Voting rights
  • Passport
  • Firearm licenses

This is not a comprehensive list of collateral consequences.  

A Cincinnati drug trafficking lawyer might be able to relieve their client of certain collateral consequences. Call Joslyn Law Firm today to begin planning your defense at (614) 444-1900.

Do not lose hope because you were charged with a crime. You have options that we can—and will—explore. We have handled over 15,000 cases and are ready to take on yours.

 


 

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Columbus Drug Trafficking Investigations

Ohio has directed a good deal of financial and labor resources to the investigation of drug trafficking. Police and prosecutors can draw from a virtual arsenal of sophisticated investigation techniques and technology to gather the evidence they will use against a suspected offender in court. With even one bit of compelling evidence, a judge might issue a search warrant that can generate even more evidence.

Electronic Monitoring

With a court order, police can install wiretaps to monitor your phones, emails, internet activity, and faxes. Cloud data can be subpoenaed, too. Using tracking devices, police can see where a cell phone is located and identify anyone in the vicinity.

Surveillance

Whether in the form of a physical stakeout or the use of sophisticated electronic systems, a surveillance unit can secretly monitor people, vehicles, and places.  Sometimes, surveillance involves a manned van parked away from the area, vehicle, or person to be monitored.

Other times it consists of a camera and recording equipment. Other surveillance efforts put undercover agents to work gathering information that can help an investigation.

Controlled Telephone Calls

Sometimes, a seemingly benign call from a friend can actually be a controlled telephone call. Police give the caller a script to read in the hopes of getting you to divulge information or evidence police can use to develop their case. The results of these conversations can be used against you at trial.

Confidential Informants (CIs)

Confidential informants serve as valuable extensions of any drug trafficking investigation, and you should know that the U.S. Supreme Court sanctions the use of CIs for penetrating drug trafficking operations, cartels, and gangs.

Any information that a CI shares with law enforcement can be used to obtain a search warrant of your home, business, car, and so on. A lawyer will call into question a CI’s motives and whether the resulting search and seizure violated your constitutional right to privacy.

Controlled Buys

Law enforcement can use controlled buys to investigate someone they suspect of selling drugs. A police officer approaches the suspect as a potential buyer. Prior to approaching the suspect, the “buyer” is checked to ensure they have no drugs on them.

Once they pass as clean, they approach the suspect with pre-recorded money to use in the transaction. A surveillance team keeps watch. After the sale, the “buyer” is again checked for controlled substances. Whatever drugs police find are deemed a product of the purchase. They conduct a field test to confirm the substance is illegal.

Entrapment defenses do not apply to controlled buys because police have already identified the target as predisposed to committing the crime.

 


 

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Evidence in Drug Trafficking Cases

With SB3, all prosecutors need to elevate a possession offense to a trafficking offense is evidence that the amount of the seized drugs qualifies as trafficking. With the tremendous focus on shutting down trafficking operations, law enforcement pulls out all the stops when gathering evidence against you.

Some of the sources of evidence they will use in their case to show knowing possession include:

  • Emails
  • Photos
  • Internet data
  • Wiretaps
  • Crime lab results
  • Police body cameras
  • Computer data
  • Text messages
  • Police testimony
  • Witness testimony
  • Audio recordings

Your Cincinnati drug trafficking lawyer knows that you can only be found guilty of trafficking if you were in possession of a controlled substance, you were aware of the drugs, and you knew what they were.

Prosecutors must be able to prove these elements to be true. Meanwhile, your lawyer can work on other defenses, such as suppressing evidence. We have seen many circumstances and know about many ways to maneuver through the legal system. You could receive reduced penalties, depending on the circumstances. Your lawyer will do all they can for you.

 


 

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Suppression of Evidence in Ohio Drug Cases

One of the strongest strategies a lawyer can use in a drug trafficking case is to get evidence thrown out. Your lawyer would execute this strategy by filing a motion to suppress the evidence.

There are many reasons that would justify suppression of evidence, and if the judge agrees with the reason your lawyer presents, it could change the course of your case, possibly resulting in the judge dismissing the case and the charges against you.

The evidence would need to constitute a significant part of the prosecution’s case to lead to dismissal of charges, but even a small bit of evidence can yield the same result. If your lawyer succeeds in suppressing one piece of evidence, any evidence that was discovered in connection with that suppressed bit of evidence is considered “fruit of the poisonous tree” and will also be thrown out. This can quickly unravel the prosecutor’s case.

The most common argument for suppressing evidence involves a violation of your constitutional rights.

Fourth Amendment Rights

As U.S. Courts confirm, the Fourth Amendment of The U.S. Constitution protects you from unreasonable search and seizure by the government.

Generally, before law enforcement can search your property, they must obtain and present a valid search warrant. Otherwise, if they do not have this warrant, the search remains valid only if you consent to it. Still, even if you consent to a search, your lawyer might argue that you did not understand what this meant.

Police can lawfully search you without a warrant if you have been arrested. However, their search must be restricted to areas where they believe evidence exists and whether they’re searching for something in plain view. If a prosecutor tries to include evidence found in a locked glove box or zipped-up suitcase, your lawyer can bring up the plain view argument and file a motion to suppress.

When it comes to your vehicle, you are protected by the same Fourth Amendment rights. Evidence from an illegal traffic stop is not admissible in court. Furthermore, although police can legally search an impounded vehicle, resulting evidence might be thrown out if you were not given the opportunity to have someone pick up your car or if the car did not need to be impounded because it was safely parked.

Fifth Amendment Rights

When police arrest a suspect, they must honor the individual’s Fifth Amendment right to protect yourself against self-incrimination. Police must read you your Miranda rights in a specific statement, as follows:

  1. You have the right to remain silent
  2. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law
  3. You have the right to an attorney
  4. If you cannot afford an attorney, one will be appointed for you


If the police fail to read you your rights, your lawyer can fight to suppress any evidence they obtained after your arrest. Similarly, if you request a lawyer and police continue interrogating you—or if they pressure you to violate your right to remain silent—any information you offer during this time can and should be thrown out.

A Cincinnati drug trafficking lawyer from Joslyn Law Firm will fight to protect your rights and suppress evidence that law enforcement unlawfully obtained in your case. Call us today at (614) 444-1900.

 


 

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Ohio Court Process in Drug Trafficking Cases

The court process you now face might intimidate you. You might find your situation a little less overwhelming if you understand the process before it unfolds.

Arraignment/Intake

At your arraignment, you will receive formal notification of the charges brought against you. The court will ask you to enter a plea of guilty or not guilty. You will receive the date of your next hearing and possibly the date of your trial. Finally, the judge will issue instructions for posting bail, if relevant.

Pretrial Hearings

Your defense lawyer and the prosecuting attorney will work on your case. After some time, the judge will call both sides to a hearing to check their progress. Legal and administrative issues can be resolved in this hearing. If appropriate, your lawyer might use this hearing to negotiate with the prosecutor.


Motion Hearings 

During motion hearings, either side can file their pretrial motions, including requests for change of venue and motions to suppress evidence, among others. Lists of trial witnesses are also presented at this time.

If your lawyer plans to file a motion for dismissal, they can do so at this hearing. If either side wants the judge to decide the case based on the presented evidence, rather than at trial, a motion for summary judgment can be filed at this hearing.


Readiness Hearing

If either side is not ready for trial, they can file a motion for continuance at the readiness hearing. This hearing also presents another opportunity to resolve the case before proceeding to trial.


Trial

If your case goes to trial (which could be a jury trial or a bench trial, based on what you choose), the prosecutor will present their evidence that you are guilty of drug trafficking. They must convince a jury that you are guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. If the jurors do not reach a unanimous decision, the judge will declare a mistrial.

Sentencing

In the event that the jury (or judge) finds you guilty of drug trafficking, the judge will decide your sentence and other penalties. Your lawyer might recommend a sentence to the judge unless a deal for sentencing was struck with the prosecutor. Your friends and family can also speak on your behalf to try to sway a lighter sentence.

 


 

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Special Investigators and Prosecutors for Cincinnati Drug Trafficking Charges 

Cincinnati spares no expense when it comes to investigating and prosecuting suspected drug traffickers.

Special Investigators

Cincinnati police receive investigative assistance from a broad range of resources. The Ohio Attorney General’s (AG) Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI) helps investigate crime scenes from offices throughout the state. Special agents concentrate on drug crimes via the BCI’s Narcotics Unit, Heroin Unit, Clandestine Lab, Marijuana Education Unit, and a Technical Operations Unit. Technical Operations agents investigate with GPS tracking devices, recording devices, and wiretaps, just to name a few.

The Ohio Law Enforcement Gateway (OHLEG) is a drug crime information network that investigators have access to.

A multi-jurisdictional drug task force staffed by narcotics agents, police departments from surrounding counties, and Cincinnati’s police department helps the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office with its drug trafficking investigations. Called the Regional Narcotics Unit (RENU), this task force also offers investigative services such as crime intelligence, undercover operatives, and drug interdiction.

Special Prosecutors

A Special Prosecutions office presented by the Ohio AG brings together a group of formidable prosecutors who have prosecuted drug cases for decades. This team also makes its expertise available to Cincinnati prosecutors who are trying to get you convicted.

 


 

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Drug Trafficking Resources

Drug Schedules – The DEA divides drugs into different schedules based on their high risk of abuse and dependency. Visit the official website for the DEA and read more on the specifics of each schedule and the drugs that fall under it.

Ohio Drug Trafficking Statute – Ohio's laws and rules regarding drug crimes and drug trafficking are on their website. Here, you can see the statutory language surrounding controlled substances and the specifics on the penalties surrounding certain drugs.

Drugs of Abuse – Here, you can view the DEA Resource Guide made by the U.S. Department of Justice. See more information about federal trafficking penalties and details on certain types of drugs.

 


 

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Notable Ohio Drug Trafficking Cases

These drug trafficking case summaries will help you understand some of the more prominent court decisions that carved out how Ohio’s drug trafficking cases are handled today.

The State of Ohio v. Gonzales

An appeals court overturned a first-degree felony sentence in a case where cocaine had been mixed with mock cocaine. It was argued that the entire weight of the seized bricks could not be considered when charging the offense because it was not pure cocaine. 

The Ohio Supreme Court agreed that the drug’s purity should factor in determining sentencing for the defendant. However, Chief Justice Maureen O’Connor reversed the decision, ruling that the mock cocaine made up a portion of the usable drug and should count when determining the sentence.

Terry v. Ohio

The U.S. Supreme Court Justice Earl Warren ruled in this case where a Cleveland police patted down three people he believed were preparing to rob a store. Concealed weapons were seized, and the men were convicted of carrying concealed weapons. 

They appealed the conviction, arguing that the pat-downs constituted illegal search. Chief Justice Warren ruled that the pat-down was lawful because the three defendants were acting in a suspicious manner. He added that stop-and-frisk searches do not automatically constitute Fourth Amendment violations. 

Ohio v. Robinette 

Robert Robinette was stopped by an officer for speeding and consented to a search of his vehicle after stating that he was not in possession of any drugs or weapons. The officer found marijuana and ecstasy in the vehicle. The Ohio Supreme Court ruled that even though Robinette was not told that he was free to go prior to the search, the search was still legal. His arrest for possession of the drugs was also legal. 

Mapp v. Ohio

Dollree Mapp was believed to be harboring a criminal suspect. Police seeking this individual forced their way into Mapp’s home without a warrant. They searched her home and found obscene images in her basement and arrested her for possessing them. It was ruled that because the evidence was obtained in a way that violated Ms. Mapp’s Fourth Amendment rights, the evidence was inadmissible in court.

 


 

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Cincinnati Drug Treatment Centers

Ohio’s judicial system sometimes turns to court-ordered rehab for drug crime offenders. Whether this applies to your situation or not, you might consider looking into one of Cincinnati’s drug treatment centers to get help with drug abuse or addiction problems you might be enduring. Some of these include:

 


 

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Related Drug Trafficking News and Articles 

“Drug Trafficking Laws Invoke Serious Consequences” – Ohio State Bar Association shares information regarding drug trafficking penalties in Ohio. 

Senate votes to overhaul Ohio’s drug possession laws” – In July 2020, the Senate voted to pass legislation (Senate Bill 3) to reclassify several low-level, felony drug possession charges as misdemeanors, create a possession with intent to distribute offense, and take a harder position on drug trafficking.

“40 pounds of cocaine from Texas worth $1.7 million seized in Cincinnati – On October 25, 2020, FOX19Now reported that the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office RENU arrested five men and seized 40 pounds of cocaine. The cocaine was transported via a semi-tractor trailer from Texas to Cincinnati. RENU agents worked with Homeland Security agents, the Cincinnati Police Department, Green Township police, and Cheviot police to execute search warrants that led to the arrest of the five men.

Five indicted in Cincinnati as part of DOJ worldwide darknet investigation” – This WKRC report from September 22, 2020 tells of the nine-month investigation into drug trafficking on the darknet. A federal grand jury indicted five people in Cincinnati on several charges of money laundering and drug trafficking. Agents seized $9 million worth of marijuana, pressed Xanax, crystal meth, cocaine, black tar heroin, suboxone, and fentanyl.

“An Offer You Can’t Refuse…How U.S. Federal Prosecutors Force Drug Defendants to Plead Guilty” – This December 5, 2013 article offers a personal look into the cases of several people convicted of federal drug crimes. They rejected prosecutors’ plea offers and—as punishment—prosecutors pursued sentences that were double the amount of time the offender would have served had they accepted the plea deals.

 


 

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Drug Trafficking Q&A 

Q. What is a major drug offender (MDO)?

  1. According to Ohio Revised Code § 2929.01(W), an MDO is someone who is found in possession of a significant amount of a controlled substance. The amounts that qualify as “significant” vary, depending on the drug:
  • Hashish: 1000 grams
  • Cocaine 100 grams
  • Heroin: 1000 unit doses or 100 grams
  • LSD: 5000 unit doses or 500 grams
  • Controlled substance analogs: 50 grams
  • Fentanyl-related compounds: 1000 unit doses or 100 grams
  • Other schedule I or II controlled substances other than marihuana: A minimum of 100 times the amount necessary to constitute a felony of the third degree

Q. What are the penalties for a major drug offender in Ohio?

  1. In Ohio, a convicted major drug offender will serve a mandatory minimum 11-year sentence in prison.

Q. What quantity of drugs will lead to a drug trafficking charge?

  1. The quantity of the drug that turns a possession offense into a trafficking offense depends on the type of drug in question. You can find precise definitions of these thresholds in the Ohio Revised Code.

Q. Is drug trafficking a felony or misdemeanor?

  1. Drug trafficking is charged as a felony and carries all the penalties, fines, and sentences that correspond to a felony charge.

Q. Will I go to prison if I was arrested for drug trafficking?

  1. If you are convicted of drug trafficking in Ohio, you will serve the sentence that accompanies a felony charge. This may include a prison or jail sentence of between six months and 10 years. You will also face a significant number of collateral consequences that can affect your employment, custody issues, education, and housing, among other aspects of your daily life.

Q. How much is bail for drug trafficking?

  1. You will learn the bail for your case at your arraignment. At this time, the judge will notify you of the charges against you, and you will enter your plea of guilty or not guilty.

 


 

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Lawyer for Trafficking of Drugs in Cincinnati, Ohio 

Are you currently charged with drug trafficking in the Southern and Central area of Ohio? An experienced criminal defense attorney can protect your rights and fight to get your charges dismissed or reduced. You can remain silent until your lawyer arrives.

The criminal defense attorneys at Joslyn Law Firm have over 20 years of experience in handling all sorts of drug crimes in Ohio's legal system. We are passionate about criminal defense and advocating for our clients. Joslyn Law Firm is respected among the legal community. Firm founder, attorney Brian Joslyn, was voted as a top criminal defense lawyer in Columbus CEO Magazine. Obtain the experienced and compassionate attorney you need. Call Joslyn Law Firm at (513) 399-6289 and speak to an attorney about your case.

Our attorneys practice law throughout the Southern District of Ohio and surrounding counties including Batavia in Clermont County, Georgetown in Brown County, Cincinnati in Hamilton County, and Wilmington in Clinton County.

Do not hesitate. Send in an online contact form to schedule your free consultation today.