Québec City Drug Offences Lawyer

The Crime Severity Index for Québec in 2021 was only 54.3 (out of 450), reflecting the relative safety of the province. However, in 2021, there were still over 14,000 arrests on drug-related charges. Illegal drugs continue to plague the province despite the legalization of cannabis and cannabis derivatives in 2018. Possession, sale, manufacture, distribution, and importation remain dangerous crimes because of the possibility of involvement with gangs or cartels and the use of firearms and resulting violence.

If you or a family member is under investigation or has been arrested for drug offences, you should not face the force and authority of the Crown alone. You need to consult with a skilled drug offences lawyer as soon as possible to ensure that police and prosecutors are respecting your rights and that you will have a guide through the complexities of a criminal prosecution.

A conviction on a drug offence, unless diverted into an Alternative Measures Program, will mean a criminal record that might interfere with your ability to work, obtain a professional licence, secure financing, find a place to live, travel to the United States, and if you are an immigrant, affect your ability to remain in Canada.

When looking for a skilled Québec City Drug Offences Lawyer, you should consider Patrick Jacques to represent you. He has over twenty years of experience in the criminal courts and a reputation for fearless defence, integrity, and compassion.

In This Article

What are Drug Offences?

Drug offences include all forms of interaction with controlled substances, as defined by the Controlled Drugs and Controlled Substances Act. These interactions include:

  • Possession
  • Possession with intent to distribute and sell
  • Drug trafficking
  • Drug manufacture and production
  • Drug importation

Drug offences also include violations of the Cannabis Act for illicit possession, sale, distribution, manufacture, and importation of marijuana outside the confines of the statute.

As noted, drugs are defined by the Controlled Drugs and Controlled Substances Act and categorized by their seeming danger.

  • Schedule I: these are usually perceived as “hard drugs”: heroin, cocaine, opium, and pharmaceutical-grade drugs like oxycodone and morphine.
  • Schedule II: these include synthetic cannabinoid derivatives, and before legalization in 2018, included drugs within the cannabis family. However, these drugs are now governed by the Cannabis Act.
  • Schedule III: these include amphetamines and hallucinogens like LSD.
  • Schedule IV: these include pharmaceuticals, such as diazepam, benzodiazepine, and anabolic steroids.
  • Schedule V: Propylhexedrine and any derived salt
  • Schedule VI: substances needed to manufacture other drugs.

What are the Possible Consequences of a Drug Offence Charge?

The penalties for conviction on a drug offence depend on a variety of factors:

  • Type of drug
  • Quantity
  • Whether there is evidence of manufacture, trafficking, or importation
  • Whether this is a first offence
  • Whether firearms or force were involved
  • Whether the defendant is addicted to a drug and eligible for diversion into an alternative measures program

The penalties are harshest for Schedule I drugs with evidence of trafficking. Trafficking a Schedule I drug of enough quantity can bring a sentence of life in prison. Less dangerous drugs, Schedule II and III, might bring a sentence of up to 10 years in prison. Even Schedule IV drugs might bring a 3-year prison sentence.

Drug possession without evidence of intent to sell can be treated either as a summary conviction or an indictable offence. Once again, the type of drug and its quantity are the key factors in imposing a sentence upon conviction.

Minor drug possession charges can range from fines to probation to a short jail sentence.

However, all drug convictions result in a criminal record that will follow you for the rest of your life.

The Importance of Choosing a Skilled Québec City Drug Offences Lawyer

As a defendant in a drug offence case, you face the awesome power of the Crown, with its extraordinary capability to investigate, subpoena, interrogate witnesses and accumulate evidence. When the Crown accuses you of a drug offence, you need a defence lawyer with the special expertise in such cases necessary to protect your rights.

Your lawyer should be acknowledged and respected by the authorities — from police to judges to the Crown — who seek to prosecute you. Your lawyer needs to ensure that those authorities operate within the Constitution and Charter of Rights & Freedoms so that you are treated fairly. To defend you effectively, your lawyer must have a comprehensive understanding of drug laws, experience with police officers and their procedures, the ability to negotiate effectively on your behalf, and the skill to take charge of the courtroom in front of a judge and jury. Québec criminal defence lawyer Patrick Jacques will bring all these qualities to your case.

An effective defence depends on introducing reasonable doubt into the Crown’s version of events as to the meaning of physical evidence and the credibility of witness testimony. To defend you effectively, Patrick Jacques will review the evidence against you, the procedures followed by police, and the methods they used to assemble their case against you to develop a reasonable summary of events that runs counter to the Crown’s version of what happened.

A plausible defence relies on the specific facts of each individual case and usually requires:

  • Reviewing police actions in their activities, such as interrogation of witnesses and retrieving evidence for any violation of provincial or Canadian and provincial law or of the Constitution and Charter of Rights & Freedoms
  • Carefully examining witness testimony for inconsistencies or inaccuracies; scrutinizing documents, texts, photos, and other tangible evidence; and examining ballistics, forensics, DNA and any other scientific data
  • Probing witnesses’ backgrounds for reasons to dispute their testimony. Was their cognitive ability compromised by alcohol and/or drugs? Was their description of the site of an event accurate? Based on the available light, could they have seen what they stated?
  • Assembling new evidence that will undermine the credibility of police, any victims, and other witnesses the prosecution may call
  • Performing due diligence with authorities to ensure that they have promptly provided all the evidence they have accumulated to defence counsel
  • Carefully poring over all the information available to the defence to create a strategy and tactics that will instill reasonable doubt into the Crown’s case

Why Choose Patrick Jacques as Your Québec City Drug Offences Lawyer?

With more than twenty years of extensive experience and a thorough knowledge of drug laws, Patrick Jacques leverages his skills as an investigator, negotiator, and courtroom defender to protect his clients accused of drug offences. He combines a proven record of success with a well-deserved reputation for the confident and ethical defence of his clients.

If you have been accused of a drug offence and need personalized, caring representation, email or call Québec City Criminal Defence Lawyer Patrick Jacques today at 418-880-0694 to arrange for a free consultation.

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