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Posted on August 19, 2020 in Arizona News

Arizona DPS Arrests, Charges 7 in Mesa Over Alleged Drug Enterprise

In a Mesa drug bust, law enforcement shut down a “notorious” drug house. They also arrested seven people on numerous drug charges. The drug bust occurred on July 29, 2020, by the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office and the Arizona Department of Public Safety (DPS) when the DPS served a search warrant at the home.

However, that was not the first time that authorities had been to the home on suspected drug crimes. A search warrant had been executed on July 15, 2020, at the same location. Law enforcement agents took ten people into custody during that search.

During the July 15 search, the homeowner was arrested. The homeowner is 68-year-old Wendie Clement. During the search, detectives seized numerous items from the home, including narcotics, two vehicles, drug paraphernalia, and a Ruger pistol.

After the suspects were released, they returned to the same home. Neighbors reported heavy traffic throughout the day and night, just as it had been before law enforcement officers served the July 15 warrant.

Racketeering Lien Placed on Residence

Because of the ongoing problems at the house, the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office put a racketeering lien on the residence. Lt. Col. Deston Coleman, Assistant Director of the Criminal Investigations Division at AZDPS, reminded people that they need to say something if they see something. Reports of criminal activity by neighbors helped shut the drug house down.

The seven people arrested as part of the drug bust face numerous criminal charges. Some of those charges are:

  • Conspiracy
  • Possession of drug paraphernalia
  • Illegal control of an enterprise
  • Possession or use of prescription drugs
  • Possession or use of narcotic drugs

Arizona has very strict drug laws. Prosecutors generally seek the maximum sentence for drug convictions. If the suspects are judged guilty, they could face substantial time in prison, significant fines, and other punishments.

What Should You Do if Arrested for a Drug Crime?

Do not resist arrest. You could face additional criminal charges for resisting arrest.

Do not talk to the police. You have the right to remain silent. Exercise that right.

Ask for a criminal defense lawyer. You also have the right to have a drug crimes attorney present during questioning. Giving a statement or trying to explain your side of the story could make the case worse.

It is best to keep quiet and wait for an attorney. Anything you say could be used against you in court. Police officers cannot make deals or promises, so do not fall for this common trick used to get suspects to talk.

Also, do not allow the officers to bait you into talking by telling you that only guilty people need attorneys. That is not true. It is wise to seek legal counsel before talking to the police.

Why Do I Need a Drug Crimes Attorney?

Even if this is not your first arrest, you need legal counsel. Knowing the “system” and developing a defense strategy are two different matters. Everyone can benefit from the advice and counsel of a criminal defense attorney if they are facing drug charges.

There is no such thing as a “minor” drug charge. All drug charges can result in severe criminal penalties.

Attorneys Can Help You Stay Out of Jail

One of the most important reasons to hire a defense lawyer is to protect your freedom. An attorney might be able to help you avoid a conviction, or at least avoid the most severe punishments for a conviction.

The attorneys understand the judicial system. Navigating the system can be overwhelming. An attorney works to get you out of jail while you wait for the court to hear your case.

Local defense lawyers are familiar with local judges and prosecutors. An experienced drug crimes attorney knows what to expect from prosecutors.

The prosecutor is not going to tell you the best deal he or she is willing to accept. The prosecutor wants a conviction and the maximum punishment. However, from handling numerous drug cases before your case, the attorney knows what the prosecutor may be willing to accept as a plea deal.

Protect Your Legal Rights

The state must prove its case by providing evidence that establishes each of the legal elements of the crime. If police officers violated your legal rights, the evidence they collected might not be admissible in court. The prosecutor will not tell you this, so you need an attorney to protect your rights.

Advise You About Your Options

A defense lawyer cannot guarantee an outcome in a case. However, he can use the considerable skills, experience, and knowledge developed by handling numerous cases like yours to explain your options. Your lawyer explains the risks of taking a matter to trial versus accepting a plea deal.

Based on sound legal advice, you decide what is best for you. Without that advice, you could choose an option that results in punishments that might have been avoided with the help of a drug crimes attorney.