Many people in New York and elsewhere use various types of decongestant medication when they suffer from colds, sinus infections or other upper respiratory illnesses. For one 30-year-old man, however, shopping for pseudoephedrine tablets landed him behind bars on drug charges. The man was one of 16 who were recently indicted in federal court following a police investigation regarding alleged methamphetamine production.
The man is said to have frequently purchased pseudoephedrine pills over a four-year period. Authorities estimate he attempted as many as 116 purchases of the drug. He has since pleaded guilty to possessing a chemical he knew would be used to manufacture a controlled substance.
Law enforcement authorities say the act of going from store to store to purchase medication with the intent to manufacture illegal drugs or to sell the purchased items to someone who then manufactures a drug is known as smurfing. Once a defendant enters a guilty plea, as the man in this situation has done, he or she then awaits a sentencing hearing. An experienced criminal defense attorney can be a great asset at such times as an attorney is often able to convince the court to hand down a lighter sentence than what the federal sentencing guidelines may call for.
When multiple people face drug charges in relation to a common investigation in New York, whether at the state or federal level, there is no guarantee they will all obtain similar outcomes in court. Much depends on the type of defense presented. Each defendant is guaranteed the right to retain experienced defense assistance, however, which is often a key factor in achieving the most favorable outcomes.
Source: pressconnects.com, "Lisle man spent 4 years shopping for meth ingredient, feds say", Anthony Borrelli, Jan. 12, 2018