Detention for narcotics sale, rights of the detainee

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Is it possible that you are accused and arrested for selling narcotics only because someone suspects you sell this type of substance? Under what circumstances can they arrest you? Is there a procedure for your detention? What are your rights if you are arrested and charged with selling narcotics?

"Suspicion" is not a fact that allows the police to arrest anyone. It is not possible that for one of your neighbors, co-workers or ex-partner to carry out a generational, professional or loving revenge, make a telephone call to the police to accuse you of narcotics sale and that they immediately knock on your door to search your house and arrest, handcuff and accuse you of selling drugs without there being evidence to prove this fact.

In order for you to be arrested, there must first be an investigation where there is evidence that you are a narcotics seller. Although you could also be arrested if you are a person who delivers drugs to the houses or you prefer the "street trade" of this type of substance, and you were followed by the police, as they had strong evidence of the fact.

For the arrest of a person who sells narcotics, the procedure is the same as for any other crime, as long as there are no aggravating circumstances such as: that you use violence or that you are armed.

In case you are at home or in your car, there must be a search warrant for the home or vehicle, as long as the drugs are not in a visible place for the police. In case you are in the street, there must be an arrest warrant.

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In both cases, you must be informed in writing of all your rights. You must know that you have the right to be informed of the facts that you are charged with, the right not to be self-incriminated, of not answering the questions that are asked about the issue, of being provided with a lawyer to advise you, being able to have a private interview with your lawyer without there being a justified delay for this, and the right to communicate with a relative to inform him of your arrest.

If you do not have the means to pay for the services of a lawyer, in some countries there is the possibility that this initial interview will be made for free.

If you are a foreigner, your rights will also include informing the consular section of your country of your detention so that they may contact your relatives and provide you with a list from which you can choose a lawyer to assist you during your process. If, in addition, you are not familiar with the language of the country in which you are arrested, you will have the right to be assisted by an interpreter, so that you can understand the charges that are filed against you and make yourself be understood in case you need dialogue with the authorities.

Your initial detention can last up to 72 hours. After this time, your case will be taken to a judge, who will determine if you qualify for parole after paying a "bond" with the amount imposed, or if you will continue to be arrested.

In all cases, you may keep the written statement of your rights for the entire duration of your detention. This information will be provided in a language that can be understood by the detainee, and if necessary will adapt to the age, degree of maturity, or any disability that prevents you from easily understand the information provided.

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In case you are a minor, the case will be passed to the Minors Section of the District Attorney's Office and the ones who have your legal custody or parental authority will be immediately informed of the fact of the arrest.

As a detainee, you will have the right to appoint a lawyer and if you do not do so, you will be assigned a lawyer (as long as it can be proved that you do not have the means to pay for a lawyer's fee).

All interviews or communications that occur between you and your lawyer will have a confidential nature, which by right, is inviolable by the lawyer who assists you, even if you are guilty of the fact that you are being charged with.

As soon as you appoint your lawyer or you are assigned a public defender, it will be your lawyer the one in charge of assisting you in the case and dealing with the district attorney's office all the rest of the process, including the possibility of reaching an agreement to lower your sentence.

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