Every year, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) makes more than 30,000 drug-related arrests. Despite these, plus the continuous surveillance and operation of law enforcement agencies to bust criminals and free streets of drug-related activities, including drug trafficking, distribution, possession and use of illegal narcotics (like cocaine, heroin, marijuana and 3, 4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA) otherwise known as Ecstasy), illegal drugs continue to be a major problem in the country.
The use of illegal drug is linked to several major causes of death in the US, including homicide, suicide, violence, HIV infection, motor-vehicle injury, hepatitis and mental illness. This is why the US Federal Government has never stopped, but, rather, still intensified its war against illegal drug trade which heightened during the 1970s when various criminal groups from Mexico started smuggling marijuana, heroin, cocaine, hallucinogens, amphetamine and methamphetamine in the US through various routes.
Many non-violent individuals suffer years of jail term due to the very wrong thought that smuggling drugs into the US is too easy money to pass up. Obviously, they willingly take the risk of being caught and being made to face heavy penalties in exchange for the big cash they believe thy will get in return.
A drug-related activity, most especially drug trafficking, is a serious federal crime with harsh mandatory sentences. For possession of drugs, for instance, most states carry a mandatory minimum sentence of 30 to 40 months imprisonment plus steep fines (other states also include many hours of community service, which will serve as additional penance for the crime). For drug trafficking, penalties can include: years of jail sentence; fine amounting to thousands of dollars; loss of right to vote until the completion of the entire felony sentence; loss of the right to carry a gun; and, loss of certain academic and professional opportunities.
Drug trafficking generally refers to the importation, exportation, production, sale, distribution and possession of prohibited drugs – a definition that is applied to all types of illegal substances. In its website (http://www.dea.gov/druginfo/ftp3.shtml), the U.S. DEA has posted a table that shows the federal trafficking penalties for illegal drugs falling under schedules I, II, III, IV, and V. It details the number of years in jail and the amount of fines based on the type and quantity of substance seized, and the number of offenses committed.
Criminal defense law firms, such as Truslow and Truslow, know that the effects of a conviction can ruin a person’s future even years after his/her conviction and despite having completed the terms of his/her sentence. Thus, though a person may be caught with illegal drugs in his/her possession, he/she stays innocent until proven guilty. Due to this, he/she is very much entitled to the most competent legal defense available which can help prove that he/she may not really be guilty of a crime after all.Read More
What to Do in Case of a Slip and Fall Accident
Slip and fall is a very common type of accident in the U.S. that causes injuries to people, from simple bruises to fractured bones. Most of those who are most prone to slip and fall accidents are people aged 55 or older and the most common injuries they suffer are fractured hips or spinal cord injury. In some instances, some falls are bad enough, causing head or neck injuries which lead to death.
Records from the National Safety Council’s (NSC) Injury Facts reveal more than 8 million slip and fall accidents in the U.S. every year. One common thought about slip and fall accidents is that this accident is the fault of victims themselves – a result of their not being careful. On the contrary, slip and fall accidents can be the fault of property owners, like landlords, business owners or homeowners who have a responsibility to keep their premises safe at all times. As explained in the website of the law firm Schuler, Halvorson, Weisser, Zoeller & Overbeck, P.A., there are far too many property owners who fail to maintain safety on their estate or warn guests of any dangers that may be present, resulting in unsuspecting visitors suffering serious and sometimes fatal injuries. Thus, when property owners fail to uphold their responsibilities and others suffer harm as a result, they should be held accountable for the effects of their negligence and carelessness.
Slip and fall accidents can can occur in shopping malls, parking lots, playgrounds, workplaces, hospitals, churches, restaurants, food courts, swimming pool areas, and so forth. Employees who suffer work-related slip and fall injuries can file a compensation claim with their state’s Worker’s Compensation office; however, if the accident occurs in a public or privately owned property, it may be possible for the injured person to file a lawsuit against the owner of the private property or against whoever has the responsibility in the maintenance of a public place.
Injured victims of slip and fall accidents should realize, however, that they must be able to prove that the property owner is the one at fault for their accident for them to be able to claim compensatory damages. It will prove totally useful, especially during a civil lawsuit, if the injured victim has a record of all important circumstances surrounding their accident, including its cause, like slippery tiles or flooring, wet or icy floor, narrow stairs, unnoticeable changes in flooring levels, torn carpeting, or cracked or broken flooring. Equally important are photos and medical proof of the injuries sustained and account of witness, if possible. Going to a highly-skilled personal injury lawyer or premises liability lawyer to seek legal assistance would be the next best move.Read More
Imagine if in the blink of an eye, you were completely dependent on another person. Returning to work would be a difficult journey. Your lack of wages coupled with expensive medical bills is burdening your family. This is the type of situation you could find yourself in after a traumatic brain injury.
According to the Cazayoux Ewing Law Firm, traumatic brain injury, commonly known as TBI, is caused by a sudden or serious impact to a person’s head. Accidents occur and sometimes people make reckless mistakes, but many traumatic brain injuries occur at the hands of others. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), there were 824 traumatic brain injuries resulting in eemergency room visits, hospitalization, and death. This type of injury has very extensive physical and financial consequences. If another party is at fault for your injuries, you should make sure that you receive the justice you deserve.
There are many forms of TBI, but the most frequently reported traumatic brain injuries are as follows:
- Concussion: Most common type of TBI, translates from Latin as the “action of striking things together”
- Memory loss: A side effect after a TBI occurs, usually results in symptoms of amnesia
- Contusions: A region of injured tissue or skin within the brain where blood capillaries have been ruptured; a bruise on your brain
- Hematoma: A solid swelling of clotted blood within the tissues of the brain
These severe injuries completely change day to day life for the victim. It affects their job and their loved ones. The issue extends far beyond the person who is actually affected by the injury. The victim might experience a complete to their lives as they know it, such as losing the ability to walk, losing control of their motor skills, being unable to feed and dress themselves, and other dramatic changes.Read More
Tax evasion and tax avoidance tend to be misconstrued by a mass audience, thanks to the similarities in the connotations. To evade something is to escape it and to avoid something is to stay away from it. Those are pretty much the same thing, right?
That is where most people go wrong – and this is a mistake that could very well result into a criminal conviction.
Ask Baton Rouge white collar crime lawyers and they’ll be the first to tell you that one of these terms is perfectly legal while the other is a federal offense. Tax evasion is willfully falsifying records in order to refrain from paying taxes or not paying taxes entirely. Tax avoidance is the difficult but legal way some people can avoid paying a large tax. There are many financial tricks and techniques in order to save money through lawful tax avoidance.
Evasion is illegal through the means of falsities. Tax evasion is also known as tax fraud and there are many ways to commit this crime such as unlawfully applying for benefits or deductions that you are not eligible for or not complying with the submission of your income report. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) are not too keen to let this pass and so, if you are accused of tax evasion for actions that constitute as legal tax avoidance, it is so important to immediately consult with a defense attorney before giving any sort of statement.
Chances are that, if you have been approached by IRS agents on the grounds of tax evasion, there is a high probability that you have already been monitored for a long time. That gives you quite the disadvantage in terms of preparation. However, it is well within your constitutional rights to refuse to answer questioning without the counsel of your legal team.
It is then recommended to contact your chosen legal team immediately as soon as you are questioned for tax evasion.Read More
There may be quite a few ideas rattling around in your head when you think about what your rights are when dealing with a police office, most of which came from all the cop shows you watch when there is nothing else more interesting. Some may be right, but some may be wrong. You can get into a whole lot of trouble if you don’t know the difference. According to the Kohler Hart Powell, SC website, you need to be very careful about what you do and say, as it can be used against you. While this might sound as common sense, it is easy to forget about it when the situation occurs. Here are some of your basic rights when dealing with the police.
You don’t have to answer their questions
It is true. If you have done nothing wrong (or at least the police officer does not appear to suspect you of anything), you do not have to answer their questions or let them do a search of your clothing, cars, or bags. You can, of course, if you want to, but in general, it would be better to find out what they want first before consenting to anything. They may find something that you do not want them to, and the fact that you consented to it means whatever incriminating evidence they find can be used against you. They will not need a warrant if you waive your right against search-and-seizure.
You do have to show identification
While you do not have to answer their questions, you generally do need to show identification, especially when you are stopped by police for a traffic violation or if they have probable cause i.e. reckless driving. This is based on a stop-and-identify statute that many states have. In Wisconsin, however, the police can ask for ID, but you don’t have to give them one, although you must give your name.
You can get in trouble for talking too much
If you are stopped, but not arrested or compelled to stay, then you do not need to have your Miranda rights read to you. However, anything you say at this point may still be used against you, so it would be best to say nothing until they tell you what you need to know. If they refuse to tell you, you can simply walk away. If they take you into custody, then they have to read you your Miranda rights. At this point, you will probably want a lawyer.Read More