Drug crimes are among the most common criminal offenses in Mississippi and across the country. Perhaps this is because there are so many different charges one could face, from misdemeanor possession to operating as a kingpin to an international drug trade. Criminal charges and their potential penalties vary widely, depending on the kind and amount of drugs involved and what the person charged may haveintended to do with the drugs. However, facing drug charges almost always means the potential for life-altering consequences.

Drug trafficking is among the most serious drug crimes with the harshest penalties for conviction. This often involves purchasing or manufacturing large amounts of illegal drugs and distributing them for sale. The more dangerous and addictive the substance authorities claim to find in someone’s possession, the more severe the potential penalties. In fact, it is possible for felony drug trafficking charges to carry sentences as long as life in prison.

Most drug crimes are handled at the state level. Crossing state lines, conspiracy, involving weapons and dealing in large quantities of drugs are several elements that may elevate the drug trafficking or distribution to a federal case. When charged with a federal crime, the accused will likely be facing possible mandatory minimum sentences and other severe penalties.

Anyone in Mississippi who is charged with drug crimes should understand that the consequences can extend well beyond the length of a jail or prison sentence. Having a felony conviction on one’s record often creates complications in many areas of life, including employment. As early as possible following an arrest for drug offenses, it is wise to have a skilled defense attorney who will aggressively fight for the rights of the accused.