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Portland Criminal Defense Law Blog

When is marijuana delivery a misdemeanor in Oregon?

Oregon is one of many states in the United States that has recently changed its marijuana laws. These laws make the use of marijuana legal within the state. However, there are still many restrictions surrounding the sale of marijuana and of other types of drugs. In many cases, people can face criminal charges for dealing marijuana.

Because the laws within the state are changing, it is important for people to know and understand their legal rights. In some cases, the delivery of marijuana can result in misdemeanor or felony charges. While this blog post can only provide information, an attorney can help answer specific legal concerns. One concern can include -- when can people face misdemeanor charges for the delivery of marijuana?

Don't try to negotiate a plea agreement alone

In a recent blog post, this blog explained that Oregon prosecutors have the right to negotiate a plea agreement with people in certain situations. When prosecutors believe that justice will be affectively served, they have the ability to agree to a plea. A plea agreement generally allows a person to agree to plead guilty or plead no contest to a criminal charge. In exchange for this agreement, the prosecutor can lower the charges the person faces or the potential punishments.

Depending on the specific situation, a plea agreement can give a person more control over the outcome of the case. This way they are not leaving the outcome up to a jury or judge but are negotiating the penalties with the prosecutor. This can keep a case from dragging out in the court system for weeks or months which benefits both the prosecutor and the accused.

Plea agreements and Oregon law

When a person is accused of a crime in Oregon, it can feel like the person has lost all control. They may not understand the criminal proceedings, the potential penalties or even how long the process is going to take. In many cases, it may feel as if the prosecutors have complete control over a situation. However, Oregon residents should know that they can play an active role in the criminal proceedings. With the right criminal defense help, people can defend against criminal charges.

While in some cases, a criminal defense might include fighting the charges in court, in other cases, the best course of action is to engage in plea negotiations. Under O.R.S. section 135.405, prosecutors have the authority to engage in negotiations with the accused in order to reach a plea agreement. Under the statute, this can be done in cases where a plea agreement would further the effective administration of the criminal justice system in Oregon.

When can an officer stop a driver for suspected DUI in Oregon?

In a recent blog post, this blog explained that police cannot use sobriety checkpoints in Oregon. Under the current state constitution such measures are illegal. This is the result of a 1987 constitutional amendment that outlawed the practice. However, as many Portland, Oregon residents know, you can still be stopped by police for suspicion of drunk driving. Unsuspecting motorists may wonder -- when can police officers stop drivers in Oregon for driving under the influence?

In many cases, a police officer can only stop a motorist for driving under the influence if the officer has a reasonable suspicion that criminal activity is occurring. This means the officer must have some reason to pull a person over to investigate a potential DUI case. Police cannot, therefore, stop unknowing motorists who have not given any reason for the officer to think that a crime has taken place.

State senator proposes sobriety checkpoints for Oregon

Oregon police have a variety of weapons in their arsenal when it comes to stopping drunk driving. They have patrols, breath tests, blood tests, field sobriety tests and more. However, in Oregon it has been illegal to use sobriety check points to identify drunk drivers. In 1987, a constitutional amendment was passed that outlawed the process. However, more than 30 other states use checkpoints as a way to search for and stop drunk drivers.

Now, debate about sobriety checkpoints has heated up in Oregon, despite falling numbers of DUI-related deaths in the state. State Senator Rod Monroe has claimed that he will introduce legislation that will bring back checkpoints to Oregon. This legislation would let police stop cars at random roadblocks. During these stops police would look for visual signs of driver impairment.

Field sobriety testing measures

When police suspect that a person has been driving under the influence, there are a variety of tests that police can choose to perform to confirm their suspicions. One common test is the field sobriety test. While people may have visions of people touching their noses or saying the alphabet backwards from popular culture, the truth is actually a little different. Field sobriety tests are sophisticated tests based in science to that help to show if a person has been drinking or not.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there are three main tests that are used to determine if a person is impaired or not. These standardized tests help officers to know if a person is intoxicated.

White collar crimes also need an aggressive defense

Many posts on this blog have stressed the seriousness of felony charges. People likely understand that they can face serious prison sentences, large fines and probation for a conviction on felony charges. However, people may not always think of the wide range of felony charges available. Not every felony charge is just for a violent crime. In fact, many white collar crimes, are purely financial. As we explained in a recent post, Oregon residents can face a Class B felony for money laundering, even when no violence was used in a case.

Oregon residents should know that white collar crimes include a variety of criminal activity including money laundering, extortion, bribery, public corruption, fraud and tax evasion. Like with felony charges for violent crimes, white collar crimes need aggressive criminal defense strategies.

What are the fines for felony convictions in Oregon?

On many occasions, this blog has explained that the potential penalties for felony convictions in Oregon are severe. These crimes are the most serious that a person can face and therefore the penalties reflect that. While many people know that these crimes can potentially include a prison sentence, many people may not realize that they can be sentenced to large fines in addition to the prison time.

In a recent post, this blog explained that people can be sentenced to fines for misdemeanor charges. In those cases, the largest fine is $6,250 for a Class A misdemeanor. Much like misdemeanors, the specific fines for felony charges depend on the specific charges that a person has been convicted of.

What is money laundering?

In a recent article, this blog highlighted the story of several local Portland residents who were arrested on various drug charges. In addition to the drug charges, the men faced charges for money laundering and illegal gambling. According to reports, the individuals had been using a local café to launder money obtained through a gambling ring and from distributing marijuana across the United States. After reading this story, many people may wonder -- what constitutes money laundering?

Under ORS section 164.170, money laundering is a Class B felony in Oregon. According to this statute, many different scenarios can lead to money laundering charges. However, generally money laundering includes obtaining money from an unlawful activity but making it appear as if it was obtained through legal means. In many cases, money laundering is meant to disguise the true ownership, location, source or nature of the money.

Portland group faces multiple criminal charges in federal court

A large scale investigation has led to several arrests in the Portland area. According to reports, a group of eight people have indicted on federal charges following the investigation. This investigation resulted in the execution of several search warrants. Reports claim that at least 12 places were searched by federal agents as the indictments were issued.

These indictments accuse the individuals of a wide variety of criminal charges, including drug charges. The individuals involved were charged with selling and distributing large quantities of marijuana throughout the United States. Authorities claim that the people would ship large amounts of marijuana to different cities across the U.S. Then, they would have people place money for the drugs in various bank accounts.

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