Los Angeles drug trafficking attorney

If you were arrested for drugs, our Los Angeles drug trafficking attorney can help. Lluis law has been representing clients with favorable results for over 40 years.


Our Los Angeles drug crime lawyers ensure the protection of your rights and offer capable and efficient legal representation.

The best drug trafficking crime attorney in Los Angeles, California

Drug trafficking is one of the crimes most punished by U.S. law. When a person is arrested on a drug trafficking charge, they must act quickly.

The crime of narcotics trafficking covers the manufacture, cultivation, contraband and transportation of drugs, among others. Whether within the U.S. or through the state of California. Thus, the defendant may face state or federal charges.   

defense on drug charges

Even if you are not directly responsible, you will need the representation of a drug lawyer. At Lluis Law we pride ourselves on being one of the best law firms for drug trafficking crimes in Los Angeles.

Consequences of a drug crime conviction

Penalties for drug-related offenses and possession of controlled substances carry penalties including:

  • Prison in a state or county jail depending on the type of crime.
  • Various fines imposed by the court.
  • Probation.
  • Compulsory attendance at drug treatment programs and / or community service.
  • Loss of a business and even a driver’s license.
  • Forfeiture of property and confiscation of bank accounts. 
  • Difficulty finding a job or establishing a business.

Most common drug-related cases in Los Angeles

The following is just an example of our most frequent Los Angeles drug related cases:

The drugs that generally appear involved in these cases are:

  • Cocaine.
  • Ecstasy.
  • Heroin.
  • Marijuana (cannabis).
  • LSD (hallucinogen derived from lysergic acid).
  • Methamphetamines.
  • OxyContin medication.
  • Morphine.
  • Mushrooms.
  • Opiates

California drug trafficking laws and penalties

Trafficking with controlled substances is illegal in the state of California under various codes, including:

Health and Safety Code 11352 – Drug trafficking

The law considers it illegal to carry out any of the following activities with controlled substances (narcotics):

  • Transport.
  • Import.
  • Sale.
  • Processing and packaging.
  • Supply or give.

Drug trafficking charges are punishable by state and federal drug laws. These charges carry prison terms of three to nine years, if the crime is for the first time. 

The amount of drug found and the circumstances of the event also count. Like the person’s criminal history.

If you need to learn how to clean your criminal record, our experts are very experienced.

The larger the volume of the drug seized, the greater the punishment including prison terms and fines. For trafficking from 500 to 4,999 grams of cocaine, the penalty can be up to 40 years in prison if there are aggravations. Plus $ 5 million in fines, under federal drug law.

Drug trafficking with intention to sell 

Meanwhile, California state law provides for up to five years in prison and $ 20,000 in drug trafficking fines. Additionally, trafficking with intent to sell is punishable by up to nine years in prison and $ 20,000 in fines.

When battery is involved in the crime of drug trafficking, the punishment is more severe. The prosecution – federal or state – petitions for additional penalties, if drugs are supplied to minors or disabled people.

penalties for drug trafficking

In these cases of drug trafficking, prosecutors often request conspiracy between crimes. Said charge further complicates the case because it offers prosecutors a broader margin of maneuver. 

A charge of conspiracy, suspending allows prosecutors to expand their investigation. Also close deals with the accused and rumors and statements of dubious origin can enter as evidence.

Federal penalties for drug trafficking 

The type of drug and the quantity, as well as the criminal record, are fundamental to the imposition of the punishment. Likewise, mitigating or aggravating factors surrounding the case are taken into account.

If you are charged with a drug trafficking crime for the first time, the penalties may be:

10 years in prison (minimum)

For a charge of trafficking with substances containing:

  • Heroin (1 kilogram).
  • Cocaine leaves, cocaine and isomers (5 kg).
  • Cocaine base (280 grams).
  • PCP (100 grams).
  • PCP mixes (1 kg or more).
  • LSD (10 grams).
  • Fentanyl (400 grams).
  • Marijuana (up to 1,000 kg).
  • Methamphetamines, their salts or isomers (50 grams).
  • Methamphetamine, its salts or isomers (1 kg).

4 – 20 years in prison 

If it is the first crime, you can receive this sentence for trafficking with a substance that contains:

  • Heroin (100 grams).
  • Cocaine, coca leaves, cocaine salts and isomers (500 grams).
  • Cocaine base (up to 28 grams).
  • PCP (10 grams).
  • PCP mix (100 grams or more).
  • LSD (up to one gram).
  • Fentanyl (up to 40 grams).
  • Marijuana (100 kg).
  • Methamphetamine, its salts or isomers (5 grams).
  • Methamphetamine, its salts or isomers (50 grams or more).

Up to 5 years in prison 

For traffic from: 

  • Less than 50 kilos of marijuana or a crop of 50 or more cannabis plants regardless of weight.
  • Less than 10 kilos of hashish.
  • Less than 1 liter of hash oil.

These penalties increase if the defendant has other prior convictions. For other drug related crimes or any serious crime. Or if someone has suffered a serious bodily injury or died during the arrest. 

Health and Safety Code 11379 (Methamphetamine trafficking)

Transporting, importing to the state, selling, supplying, administering or giving away methamphetamines is also illegal. The most common methamphetamines in California are: meth, blow, speed, rock, chalk, de tina, ice, glass and crank.

These drugs classified as dangerous are among the most widely abused in California. People who are found guilty of some of these traffic-related crimes can receive severe penalties.

Penalties for methamphetamine trafficking in the state range from three, six, and up to nine years in prison in a state jail.

Health and Safety Code 11360 (Marijuana trafficking)

Despite the fact that marijuana is legalized in California, its trafficking is also punished. Even possession without a proper license is punishable. The medicinal and recreational use of cannabis is allowed, but not its trafficking. 

The regulations of this drug allow only the possession of small doses for personal use. Marijuana trafficking includes the transportation, import, sale, supply or gift without a valid license.

People who are charged with this crime may face misdemeanor charges, depending on the amount. Although if the accused also has a criminal record, traffics large amounts or sells it to minors, the crime is serious. The punishment for this crime amounts to two, three or four years in prison.

Marijuana laws in California

If you want to learn more about marijuana laws in California follow the link to our blog post. 

Other charges associated with drug trafficking

Some of the most frequent crimes handled by our Los Angeles drug trafficking attorney associated with a controlled substance trafficking are:

Drug possession

This offense includes possessing any of the controlled substances established in California drug related laws. Such substances can be illegal drugs like: cocaine, marijuana, ecstasy, heroin and others. Or prescription medications (Oxycontin, Valium, Phentermine) without a valid prescription for your possession.

Under the influence of drugs

Drug use is also sanctioned in California, if the person is detained under the influence. The law considers that being under the influence of illegal drugs constitutes a form of possession of the prohibited substance.

Possession with intent to sell

When the intention to sell them is established in addition to drug possession, the offense becomes even more serious. During a drug trial, the severity of the crime depends on the circumstances of the act.

That is, the amount of drugs / medications found during the arrest and the disposal of the substance. Also, the paraphernalia used, the way of packaging the drug and others.

Drug transportation

Here also the charges vary according to the quantity of drug found and the way it was transported. Apart from the intention of transporting the drug for sale.

Possession of drug paraphernalia

Paraphernalia are the instruments or tools used for the sale or consumption of drugs. For example, pipes, injectors, spoons, scales, tubes, bags and so on.

The charges for possession of paraphernalia for the use / sale of drugs are in addition to the other charges that are established.  

Prescription drug fraud

Fraud can occur in two ways:

  • For falsification of a doctor’s signature on a prescription or,
  • For prescribing a drug to a patient as a placebo to make him believe that he will be cured. Generally in complicity with the manufacturer of the drug that only seeks to increase sales.

Driving under the influence (DUI)

DUI charges are not just about driving drunk or high blood alcohol 0.08 g / dl. These also for driving under the influence of drugs, including marijuana that is legal in California and certain prescription drugs.

Driving under the influence of prescription drugs that affect judgment or the ability to drive responsibly is also illegal. The DUI crime can be considered serious, depending on the degree of intoxication and the circumstances of the fact. 

DUI lawyers in los angeles

For example, if you are in a car accident or are involved in a hit-and-run case. If you want to learn more about driving under the influence (DUI) click on the link.

Aggravating factors of trafficking crimes

Both federal and state laws establish aggravating factors for the crime of drug trafficking. The accused’s background (associated or not with drug trafficking), the type of drug and the amount found increase the sanctions.

Possible drug trafficking defenses

Although drug trafficking charges are extremely serious, there are certain defenses that can be invoked. For example:  

  • Errors and rights violations in the procedure practiced by the police. 
  • Use of illegal methods to effect arrest. 
  • The client was unaware that there were drugs on his property (house, car, luggage and others).
  • You have valid prescriptions or medication distribution permits. 
  • He/she was a mere innocent bystander at the time of the arrest.
  • The evidence found is not considered illegal substance under California law.

Violation of constitutional rights or police errors can lead the judge to dismiss the charges. If not, we can try a reduction in the penalty if it is the first offense. 

To resolve these cases, it is often necessary to negotiate with the prosecution. Negotiation involves the defendant pleading guilty and collaborating with the authorities by offering valuable information. 

To negotiate a judgment, you must necessarily have an experienced and capable drug lawyer by your side. 

Benefits of hiring Lluis Law

The Los Angeles criminal lawyers at Lluis Law fully understand their clients. They often help them decrease prison terms and fines.

We offer quality, efficient and honest legal representation, and we fight to avoid asset confiscation. Our attorneys know how to do their job very well and challenge the actions of the police and prosecutors.

For this reason, both Ramiro J. Lluis and David David A. Lluis have a well-earned prestige in the city. If you want to know more about the benefits of hiring an attorney and how we can help you, call us now.

As an experienced Los Angeles drug trafficking attorney, we strive to offer the best service. We investigate the case to uncover weaknesses and make sure to avoid violation of customer rights.