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Defendant Claims Insufficiency of Evidence in Heroin Possession Case


Defendant was charged with a drug crime, particularly, for possession of heroin and filed an appeal before the court for his conviction. Appellant averred that there was insufficiency of evidence, admissibility of the testimony pertaining to other drugs than those of which he was indicted and trial judge’s charge to the jury.

A New York Criminal Lawyer said the facts of the case were, the postal inspectors found a package from Thailand containing 13 grams of heroin addressed to the resident of the accused. The postal authorities managed an organized delivery of the package to the defendant’s residence. Upon receipt of the package, the officials waited for about twenty to thirty minutes before they entered the apartment of the appellant equipped with a valid search warrant. They saw the drug felon inside his bedroom with 6.5 grams of heroin on top of a table near him. The police detectives made further search within the premises and found thirty packets of heroin, also known as “dime bags,” and butts of marijuana cigarettes inside a drawer of a dresser at another bedroom at the opposite side of the defendant’s room.

The theory of the government was that the accused intended to distribute the heroin upon discovery of the “dime bags” in his apartment. It was a common practice that heroin found in such kind of packages are fitting for the drug crime of street distribution, which is an indication that the appellant was a drug dealer of heroin and the purpose of the delivery of the heroin package was for its distribution. A New York Drug Crime Lawyer said the accused had a different theory, which he presented before the jury. He contended that the “dime bags” did not contain any heroin from the package and that the entire 13-gram heroin he received were those that was found on top of the table in front of him that was found by the police officers. He alleged that when he heard the law enforcers coming inside his room, he had thrown some of the heroin into a corner of a closet.

One of the defendant’s assertions was that there was insufficiency of evidence for the jury failed to consider his theory without reason, thus, arguing that this would result to the evidence being not sufficient to support his conviction of the drug crime. Applying the standard adjudged by the court in one case, to wit “We must uphold a guilty verdict if there is any theory of the evidence from which the jury might have excluded every hypothesis except guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.” The court found the argument of the accused unjustifiable and concluded that, upon review of the evidence, the jury met the standard of having considered a reasonable hypothesis to support its decision. He further alleged that the “dime bags” and butts of marijuana are evidence for other crimes or charges and, therefore, cannot be admissible as evidence to the present case. A Nassau County Drug Possession Lawyer said the court also disagreed to the appellant’s contention that the other drugs found during the search should not be admitted as evidence to show his intent of distributing heroin considering that the judge clearly instructed to the omission of any evidence pertaining to the found marijuana.

The court ruled that possession of pure heroin would strongly support an inference of intent to distribute as oppose to just mere possession of such heroin. Given the evidence presented before the trial, it was enough to ascertain that the high quality heroin possessed by the defendant was expensive if distributed in the streets, which constituted a drug crime. Thus, a Queens Drug Possession Lawyer said the court found that the judge did not give the jurors any confusing or erroneous impression to instruct an inference that the appellant had intentions to distribute the heroin.

Consequently, the court found without merit the averments of the appellant and affirmed the conviction of the latter.

A person indicted of heroin possession or other drug crimes requires the assistance of an attorney because it entail serious and difficult question of facts and laws to establish the innocence or guilt of the accused. Stephen Bilkis and Associates have criminal lawyers who are well capacitated to which you can seek legal advice and help in handling a drug case.

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