Common Defenses Against Drug Possession Charges

Blischak Law June 16, 2023 Personal injury

Being charged with drug possession can have serious legal consequences, including fines, probation, and even imprisonment. However, it is important to remember that you have rights and possibly the following common defenses available to you.

Unlawful Search and Seizure

One of the most frequently used defenses is challenging the legality of the search and seizure conducted by law enforcement. The Fourth Amendment of the United States Constitution protects individuals from unreasonable searches and seizures. If the police violated your constitutional rights by conducting an unlawful search or seizure, the evidence obtained can be suppressed or excluded from the trial. Examples of unlawful searches include lack of probable cause, absence of a search warrant, or an invalid search warrant.

Lack of Knowledge

Another defense is to argue that you were unaware of the presence of drugs. The prosecution must prove that you had knowledge of the drug’s presence and that you exercised control over it. If you can demonstrate that you had no knowledge of the drugs and can provide evidence to support your claim, it may weaken the prosecution’s case against you.

Illegal Substance Defense

In some cases, a viable defense can involve challenging the substance’s classification or arguing that the substance in question is not actually illegal. This defense strategy often relies on scientific evidence, expert testimony, or proving there were procedural errors in the handling and testing of the substance.

Invalid or Defective Chain of Custody

The chain of custody refers to the documentation and procedures followed when handling and storing evidence. Any gaps or irregularities in the chain of custody can weaken the prosecution’s case. If there are doubts about the integrity of the evidence or if it cannot be conclusively proved that the drugs presented in court are the same as those seized from you, your defense attorney can argue for the exclusion of the evidence.

Medical Necessity or Prescription

In certain cases, individuals may possess controlled substances for legitimate medical purposes. If you have a valid prescription for the drug found in your possession, it is important to present this evidence to the court. Medical necessity can be a valid defense in situations where the possession of drugs was crucial for the individual’s health and well-being.


Entrapment is a legal defense that asserts that law enforcement induced or coerced you into committing a crime you had no intention of committing. It typically involves demonstrating that law enforcement officers or their agents actively encouraged, persuaded, or coerced you into committing the crime. Mere providing an opportunity to commit a crime is not sufficient to prove entrapment. Additionally, you must be able to show that you had no prior inclination or predisposition to commit the crime.

Speak to a Trusted Attorney

Facing drug possession charges can be an overwhelming and distressing experience. It is critical to consult an experienced Phoenix Drug Offense Lawyer. They can thoroughly evaluate the details of your case, identify the most effective defense strategy, and guide you through the legal process.