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Be aware of search and seizure rights when facing drug charges

New York prosecutors may aggressively try to obtain convictions and want to present evidence to the court that investigators gathered in a vehicle search. As a defendant, it is crucial to know whether police were acting in accordance with the law. Many police officers have violated personal rights in the past by ignoring regulations, then arming prosecutors with evidence to file drug charges.  

Under the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, a person has the right to expect privacy when in his or her car. There are issues that would substantiate an officer's claim that an warrantless search was necessary. Understanding one's rights, as well as where to seek support if a problem arises, may be the key to avoiding conviction.  

Never assume to know the law, especially if erring might mean the difference between going to jail or obtaining a case dismissal. Fourth Amendment rights are especially pertinent in situations where police have searched a vehicle and seized one or more items from inside. A person typically has a right to privacy when inside his or her home, driving a personal vehicle or carrying a pocketbook. 

If a New York police officer asks someone to get out of his or her car, then proceeds to open the glove compartment and remove a vial or other container from inside, it may wind up being a key factor if drug charges are later filed. If a defendant believes the officer deviated from protocol, an attorney can help determine if there are grounds to challenge the actions of law enforcement personnel. While it's impossible to predict an outcome, chances of avoiding conviction are usually greater if the person charged relies on experienced criminal defense assistance in court.  

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