Located in Newburyport, Ma., Criminal Attorney Kristen Bonavita has handled thousands of Drug cases in the Massachusetts State District and Superior Courts. As a former prosecutor in the Narcotics Division of the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office, Criminal Attorney Kristen Bonavita is an Essex, Suffolk, and Middlesex county criminal lawyer who understands what it takes to prevail if you have been charged with a drug crime.
It is always important to retain an experienced criminal defense attorney early in your case as many of these charges carry with them mandatory minimum sentences that should be addressed at the onset of the case.
Criminal Attorney Kristen Bonavita understands the complexities of this type of work and has served as both Instructor and Co-chair for the Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education (MCLE) on Trying Drug Cases in 2009 and 2010. Her expertise in search and seizure law used in advocating for suppression means that Criminal Attorney Bonavita will recognize if the police did not follow the letter of the law.
If you or someone you know has been arrested and charged with any drug crime in Essex, Suffolk or Middlesex county it is critical that you get immediate legal representation from an experienced drug crime defense attorney. Law enforcement has been given the task to reduce the illegal drug trade in Massachusetts, and special task forces are entirely focused on arresting and charging drug users, drug traffickers and those who are in possession of illegal drugs of any kind. The penalties are extremely harsh for drug offenses in the state, and facing a drug offense without strong legal representation could have disastrous results. Attorney Bonavita has handled several thousand cases over the years, including those as a prosecutor in the Suffolk County DA’s office in the Superior Court, Narcotics Division. Criminal Attorney Bonavita has the experience to defend you on every drug charge, including the following:
Trafficking/Sale of Narcotics (Heroin, Crack Cocaine, Cocaine, Methamphetamine, Marijuana, Ecstasy, Xanax and other Prescription Pills, and all other class A, B, C, D and E Drugs. The selling of illegal narcotics, including marijuana, heroin, ecstasy, LSD and meth, can land you serious consequences if arrested by a local or federal agency. Whether you are charged with Trafficking in lieu of a lesser drug offense is often based upon the quantity of drugs with which you are charged. That quantity, in conjunction with prior offenses for like and similar charges, will determine the potential penalties that you face. If you have served state prison time previously, you may also be charged as a habitual offender exposing you to the maximum sentence for any particular drug offense. If you have been accused of trafficking or selling narcotics in Essex, Suffolk or Middlesex county, Massachusetts, involving attorney Bonavita at the onset of your case is strongly recommended. Click here to read more about drug trafficking / sale of narcotics.
Drug Possession is a serious offense. On a first offense you may be facing an automatic one year loss of license, fines, treatment programs and potentially jail time. While possession of a small amount of a controlled substance can oftentimes be resolved without a trial or a conviction in Massachusetts, possession of larger amounts of heroin, cocaine, methamphetamines, and prescription drugs are prosecuted more aggressively and can result in jail time, a criminal record, and the loss of your driver’s license. If you have been charged with drug possession, immediate help from Attorney Kristen Bonavita can help you minimize negative consequences.
Possession with Intent to Distribute/ Drug Distribution
The charges of Possession with Intent to Distribute and Drug Distribution are considered serious offenses under the law, and in many cases, implicate mandatory minimum jail sentences. You may face charges of Possession with Intent to Distribute, if when arrested, the police feel that based upon the quantity of drugs involved, method of packaging, associated paraphernalia, money recovered or other pertinent factors, that you possessed that quantity of narcotics with the intent to distribute them to another person. If the police feel they have witnessed a transfer of controlled substances, regardless of whether they observed an actual exchange, you can be charged with Distribution. In these situations, it is imperative to have an attorney who is intimately familiar with narcotics prosecution and how to argue for reduction or charges, dismissal for inadequate evidence, suppression based upon inappropriate seizure of evidence and/or that the quantity of narcotics recovered was held for personal, thus reducing the charges to simple possession. person charged with Possession with the Intent to Distribute or Distribution of Controlled Substances is facing serious charges that demand the representation of an aggressive and experienced criminal drug defense attorney. Call Attorney Bonavita for a free consultation.
Possession with Intent to Distribute Marijuana
Trafficking in marijuana by definition is over 50 pounds. If you are found in possession or a quantity under 50 pounds, you could be charged with either possession with intent to distribute or distribution. In order to be charged with distribution, it is not an element of the crime that the distribution be more monetary or pecuniary gain. If you have been arrested for any marijuana charge, contact Attorney Bonavita immediately, you will need experienced representation, as the state of Massachusetts has strict laws regarding drug crimes and will enforce maximum penalties if found guilty.
School Zone Violation
Under the Massachusetts Drug Control Laws, you may be subjected to an enhanced two year mandatory minimum charge if you violated the drug control laws in what is referred to as a “park zone” or “school zone.” Effective as of July 1, 1998, if a person is charged with Possession with Intent to Distribute, Distribution or Trafficking of any controlled substance, and found within three hundred (300) feet of a public or private accredited pre-school, elementary, vocational, high school or other qualifying institution, or one hundred (100) feet of a public park or playground, you may be facing a two year mandatory minimum jail sentence. This penalty is mandatory under the statute and only avoided by hiring an experienced attorney to argue for dismissal of that particular charge.
The state of Massachusetts has decriminalized the use of the drug marijuana to a certain extent. First time offenders with 28 grams (1oz) of the drug or less in their possession at time of arrest will face no jail time, only a fine. The offense is treated as a civil infraction or violation. Between the years of 1995 and 2002 an average of 10,000 arrests took place for the use, possession, sale or cultivation of the drug marijuana in the state of Massachusetts. Often, however, you may be facing marijuana charges even if you possess less than an ounce if the police feel you are possessing that amount with the intent to distribute it to another. In that case, you need an experienced attorney to assist you immediately. If you face marijuana charges, please consult attorney Bonavita to develop a defense for the case. If you have been accused or are currently under investigation for possessing or trafficking of marijuana, please call attorney Bonavita immediately.
What is drug paraphernalia? Paraphernalia of drugs is any instrument used to sell, grow, distribute or use drugs; this includes bongs, pipes, hypodermic syringes or needles, baggies, scales, testing equipment, or manufacturing equipment. Some paraphernalia has been decriminalized, however, it is still illegal to sell, possess or manufacture drug paraphernalia under circumstances where one reasonably should know, that it will be used to plant, grow, manufacture, convert, produce, prepare, ingest, inhale or otherwise introduce into the human body a controlled substance in violation of the drug control laws. Contact Attorney Bonavita if you have been arrested or summonsed with a drug paraphernalia charge, she can tell you your rights.
Having a former prosecutor on your side is important!
What that means to you is that Criminal Attorney Kristen Bonavita has been proven to be extremely capable and successful in prosecuting, defending, and knowing the key aspects and players in court. This is of utmost importance as your case may go to trial. At trial, a whole new set of qualifications is necessary other than an understanding of the laws surrounding drug cases. Courtroom talent is vitally important in drug cases, as well as other criminal charges. Criminal Attorney Bonavita will set your defense in motion long before it could possibly go to trial. She will explore legal and procedural deficiencies in the prosecutions case and filing any associated motions. If your case goes to trial, Criminal Attorney Bonavita will build a case where there can be reasonable doubt that the crime was committed by the client.
In some cases, constitutional rights have been violated when law enforcement made the arrest. There are often openings for the defense that can result in a suppression of evidence against you. Your case should be reviewed and evaluated at once to determine how to move forward quickly with the defense.
If you were charged with a drug crime in Essex, Suffolk, or Middlesex County, have Criminal Attorney Kristen Bonavita evaluate your case for free as soon as possible, contact Criminal Attorney Bonavita at: 978-376-6746 or complete our case evaluation form.