QUESTION

Can I be charged with drug trafficking based on text messages?

Asked on Jul 27th, 2012 on Criminal Law - Michoacán
More details to this question:
I was pulled over leaving my house about a week ago by an undercover detective. Apparently they received a tip that I was selling marijuana. The police searched my car without my permission and claimed the drug dog smelled something, yet they found no drugs in my car. Somehow they obtained a search warrant for my house and found a small bag of marijuana, which was my roommate's, and a scale in the kitchen. They also took my gun and my cash I had in my safe as well as my cell phone. They told me they could charge me with trafficking over 8 ounces based on the text messages on my phone. They did not find but maybe a couple grams of actual marijuana. They haven't filed any charges yet but I have a feeling they will try to. Can I be charged with trafficking over 8 ounces based on the text messages?
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Answered on May 28th, 2013 at 11:55 PM
Yes.

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Leonard A. Kaanta
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Answered on May 28th, 2013 at 11:53 PM
Yes.

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Answered on May 28th, 2013 at 11:48 PM
Yes.

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Answered on May 28th, 2013 at 11:45 PM
Yes.

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Answered on Aug 20th, 2012 at 1:08 PM
They will need evidence of the marijuana to prove the amount. They are trying to scare you and get you to admit to something. Do not me fooled. Hire a lawyer and DO NOT speak with the police unless your lawyer specifically advises you to do so with him/her present.

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Answered on Aug 15th, 2012 at 4:47 PM
Depends upon what the text messages say, but yes, those text messages could be used against you to support the crime charged.

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Answered on Aug 15th, 2012 at 4:46 PM
Yes, if the messages and other evidence from search prove involvement in criminal activity. When threatened or charged with any crime, the proper questions are, can any evidence obtained in a test, search or confession be used against you, can you be convicted, and what can you do? A little free advice: exercise the 5th Amendment right to SHUT UP and do NOT talk to police or anyone about the case except with and through an attorney, if it is not already too late for the warning. Raise all appropriate defenses with whatever witnesses, evidence and sympathies are available for legal arguments, for evidence suppression or other motions, or for trial. If you don't know how to represent yourself effectively against an experienced prosecutor intending to convict, then hire an attorney who does, who will try to get a dismissal, charge reduction, diversion, program, or other decent outcome through plea bargain, or take it to trial if appropriate.

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Answered on Aug 15th, 2012 at 4:46 PM
Not likely but it sounds like you will need a good attorney if only to get your property back.

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Michael J. Breczinski
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Answered on Aug 15th, 2012 at 4:46 PM
Just because a messaage says that you were trafficking over a certain amount does not make it true. Also the search warrant may be able to be attacked depending on the facts they used to get it. You need a good attorney. Get one.

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Answered on Aug 15th, 2012 at 4:45 PM
Yes, the question would be do they have proof of possession for sale. If you offered drugs to another person that can be used as proof of why you possessed the drugs.

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Answered on Aug 15th, 2012 at 4:45 PM
Good luck proving you actually had, sold, transported or trafficked anything based just only on text messages. There is no proof that you ever actually possessed marijuana, let alone sold it. But this is worth sitting down with a local criminal defense attorney to discuss this in much greater detail though. Based on the messages, scale and actual weed found, they could try to trump this up to possession for sales with a gun enhancement.

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James M. Osak
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Answered on Aug 15th, 2012 at 4:44 PM
The cops'll go to ANY lenghts to prosecute citizens!

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Jeff Fengcheng Yeh
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Answered on Aug 15th, 2012 at 4:43 PM
Possibly but not likely. What will usually seal your fate is your mouth. You should exercise your right to remain silent. Only speak to an attorney and nobody else. Anyone else you speak to becomes a witness to your incriminating statements.

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Answered on Aug 15th, 2012 at 4:43 PM
They can TRY and charge you with anything, but that won't stick. You just need to hire a good drug trial attorney and fight it.

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Answered on Aug 15th, 2012 at 4:43 PM
You can be charged, but that doesn't mean a jury will find you guilty. Depending on what the text messages say, it may be difficult to convict you. Hire a talented attorney, and whatever you do, do not make any statements to the police.

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Dennis P. Mikko
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Answered on Aug 15th, 2012 at 4:41 PM
Charges could be filed if there is probable cause to believe a crime was committed and probable cause to believe you committed it. It will be up to the prosecuting attorney to review the information the police have and determine if any charges will be filed.

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Answered on Aug 15th, 2012 at 4:40 PM
They can definitely charge you. However, it may not be enough to convict you.

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Answered on Aug 15th, 2012 at 4:39 PM
Yes it is possible that they can charge you, but it appears that they are primarily attempting to rattle you and make your "Sing". Furthermore, the cops can charge anybody. The key from their standpoint is getting you convicted. REMEMBER THIS! Bottom line, they can charge you with anything except they do not like to charge people they can't convict. The problem is convicting you. If you keep your mouth shut, and I mean DO NOT SAY A WORD TO THE POLICE they will have a hard time convicting you without more than text messages. If they attempt to speak to, or question you, you must tell them (1) " I do not want to speak with you or answer any question, period. And (2) I do not want you attempting to speak with me or ask me question unless my lawyer is present . Can I call my or an, attorney". By law they must cease any attempts at interrogation, and they must not attempt to reinitiate communication with you until your lawyer is present. If you don't help them and if all they have are text messages they do not have enough. However, if they can corroborate the incriminating statements in the text messages they may be able to convict. For example they may interview some person you sent text messages to who may confirm he bought drugs from you. You need an attorney both to stop the police from interrogating you and to try to prevent your conviction, if you are charged.

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Answered on Aug 15th, 2012 at 4:38 PM
Absolutely! A drug trafficking charge can be proven in numerous ways, such as phone calls, direct transactions with an undercover agent or informant, surveillance or text messages found in your cell phone. If the text messages relate to drug trafficking they can definitely be used against you, assuming they were legally obtained.

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Answered on Aug 15th, 2012 at 4:38 PM
Yes but law is complicated on the admissibility of text messages. Speak to an attorney.

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Gary Moore
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Answered on Aug 15th, 2012 at 4:38 PM
Of course, they CAN charge you, but there are some seriuous search and seizure constitutional questions which they must deal with.

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Answered on Aug 15th, 2012 at 4:37 PM
No because there is a corpus delecti problem. Your testing statement must be proven by the actual quantity.

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Answered on Aug 15th, 2012 at 4:36 PM
I doubt they'll bother. They were probably trying to scare you. This is a common tactic that they use to get informants. With narcotics investigations, they're always after the bigger fish. By scaring you, they're hoping to get some good intel out of you. That's my guess anyway. If charges are even filed, make sure you hire an attorney immediately.

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Answered on Aug 15th, 2012 at 4:35 PM
The answer is perhaps. One would have to know all of the facts and read any police reports and warrants in this case, as well as numerous search and seizure cases, in order to determine if the evidence can be suppressed.

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Answered on Aug 15th, 2012 at 4:35 PM
I think the text messages may be difficult to admit as evidence but having actual drugs, a gun, and a scale in addition to text messages could form the basis for a criminal charge.

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John F. Brennan
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Answered on Aug 15th, 2012 at 4:34 PM
The charge is at the prosecutor's discretion, you need an attorney now. Get one and speak with no one else.

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