Whereas a simple drug possession crime only requires a prosecutor to prove that an alleged offender was in possession of controlled substance, the crime of possession with intent to sell, deliver, or distribute a drug requires a far greater burden of proof. In these cases, the prosecutor has to find a way to prove an alleged offender’s criminal intent.
Criminal intent is notoriously difficult to prove beyond a reasonable doubt because the alleged offender is often the only person who truly knows what they were actually thinking. Prosecutors with intent to sell cases often rely on many different kinds of circumstantial evidence to argue that an alleged offender clearly had an intent to distribute an illegal drug.
If you or your loved one have been arrested for alleged drug possession with intent to sell in the Denton area, you need to waste no time in finding yourself legal counsel. The Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy represents people arrested in communities all over Denton County.
The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals wrote in Branch v. State, 599 S.W.2d 324, 325 (Tex. Crim.App.1980),“There is no statutory presumption regarding the evidence to prove possession with intent to deliver.” A man had been sentenced to life in prison after being convicted of possession with intent to deliver heroin in that case.
Other jurisdictions, the Court of Criminal Appeals held, generally concluded that evidence of large quantities of a controlled substance or evidence of large quantities coupled with other factors such as packaging material is sufficient to support an inference that the possession was with intent to deliver. The Court of Criminal Appeals ruled that the evidence was sufficient and the“only reasonable explanation for these facts is that Branch was actively engaged in the business of selling heroin” in Branch because it involved possession of enough heroin to make 2,864 “hits,” heroin being secreted in various places through a vehicle, heroin being packaged in small quantities,and almost $8,000 in small bills.
Circumstantial evidence in possession with intent to sell cases often includes, but is not limited to:
● Large amounts of cash
● Drug paraphernalia, such as baggies, scales, or other packaging materials
● Electronic messages to the alleged offender from other parties
● Arrest location (if alleged offense occurred in area known for drug activity)
● Quality or purity of the controlled substance
Most possession with intent to sell cases are prosecuted as manufacture or delivery violations of the Texas Controlled Substance Act. Penalty Groups that drugs are classified into often dictate penalties in these cases.
Possession with intent to sell crimes are commonly classified as follows:
You need to keep in mind that a prosecutor has to prove your alleged intent to sell, distribute, or deliver a controlled substance beyond a reasonable doubt. One of the strongest defenses people have against these types of charges is simply claiming they had not such intent.
When prosecutors are relying on circumstantial evidence to make their case, an experienced criminal defense attorney can help determine possible defenses that explain lawful reasons for such circumstantial factors. Your case might not even make it to court if police seized drugs from you through an illegal search and seizure.
North Texas High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area | Department of Justice — This is a 2011 drug market analysis for the North Texas High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA). Denton County is inthe Texoma region on the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) HIDTA map. The primary drug threat to the region was methamphetamine, but abuse of controlled prescription drugs, the criminal activities of Mexican drug trafficking organizations, and pervasive availability of marijuana also posed considerable threats to the region.
Texas | Families Against Mandatory Minimums (FAMM)— FAMM identifies itself as “a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization fighting for smart sentencing laws that protect public safety.” Learn more about mandatory minimum laws in Texas and facts about the state’s prison population on the Texas section of the FAMM website. Also find ways to advocate for sentencing reform.
Were you or your loved one arrested for alleged possession of a controlled substance with intent to sell in Denton or surrounding location in Denton County? Get yourself legal representation as quickly as you can.
The Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy canfight to possibly get your criminal charges reduced or dismissed. Our firm will explore all of your legal options with you as soon as as you call (940)222-8004 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.