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Interviewer: What are some ways that a case can get dismissed?
AZ Criminal Law Team Lawyer:
There are several ways drug related offenses can get dismissed. Some of these are unreasonable search and seizure, the drugs belonged to someone else, faulty crime lab analysis, drugs were planted, entrapment and the medical marijuana exception.
With possession charges, you have to have knowledge and so you can defend against not having knowledge that the drugs were there.
Interviewer: When a case gets dismissed, does it completely go off your record?
AZ Criminal Law Team Lawyer: Yes. It completely goes off your record.
The Medical Marijuana Laws Have Made Defending Marijuana-Related DUIs More Complex
Interviewer: Because of the medical marijuana law that have been passed, are drug charges any easier to defend or have they become a little bit more complex?
AZ Criminal Law Team Lawyer: DUI drug cases have become a little bit more complex.
Interviewer: How do the new laws work with employment in Arizona? Are employers are more understanding about marijuana consumption?
AZ Criminal Law Team Lawyer: A little bit. I think it depends on a person’s employer and who it is and whether they are going to be lenient or not. Also, if an employee has been charged with a drug-related offense, their future employment may depend on the consequences that the person is looking at after the plead guilty.
How Do Penalties for Marijuana-Related Charges Now Differ with the Advent of the Medical Marijuana Law?
Interviewer: What are some major ways the court has changed their penalties for marijuana crimes? Have they changed at all because of this new law?
The Arizona Court of Appeals ruled that even though the metabolite of marijuana it is not impairing, it is against Arizona law to drive while having marijuana’s metabolite in your system. So if you haven’t smoked in two weeks and you’re not impaired, you may still have metabolite present in your system, and can be charged with DUI.
The Impairing Effects of Marijuana Stay in People’s System for Longer than Originally Thought
Interviewer: If someone had smoked marijuana prior to driving and they are pulled over, can they be facing serious consequences?
AZ Criminal Law Team Lawyer: Correct. Because now even if someone smoked say a week ago, that metabolite the non-psychoactive part of the THC, can still be in someone’s system. It can be anywhere from 72 hours to a month where it will still be present in someone’s system and they can be charged with a DUI.
Arizona Allows for a Set Aside of a Criminal Judgment
Interviewer: If someone has a drug charge on their record, can they have it expunged?
Arizona Does Permit a Set Aside of Charges
AZ Criminal Law Team Lawyer: Arizona does not call it an expungement but a judgment set aside. You have to file a motion to set aside the judgment with the court and either the judge will rule on it right then or they’ll set it for a hearing. If it is granted and you look at a person’s record, rather than showing a judgment of “guilt” it will say “set aside.”