On July 8, a California man was sentenced to 15 years in prison for possessing 14 packages of methamphetamine that had been disguised to look like burritos wrapped in foil. He was also ordered to pay a fine of $300 and serve five years of supervised release after he leaves prison.
According to prosecutors, on Feb. 3, 2018, the 48-year-old defendant was pulled over by officers from the Los Angeles Police Department after he was spotted driving his white Chevrolet Tahoe erratically and suspiciously in the Angelino Heights area. During the traffic stop, officers asked his permission to search the vehicle, and he granted it. While searching the floor behind the driver's seat, they found nearly 14 pounds of methamphetamine that had been wrapped up like burritos. The estimated street value of the drugs was believed to be between $27,000 and $40,000. Officers also found over $800 in cash and a loaded handgun in the SUV.
The defendant, who is a member of a Los Angeles street gang, was arrested and later indicted by a federal grand jury. In March, he was convicted of possession with the intent to distribute methamphetamine, possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug crime and being a felon in possession of a firearm. According to authorities, he has a number of other criminal convictions on his record.
Individuals accused of drug possession may be able to get the charges reduced or dismissed by working with a criminal defense attorney. For example, the attorney might scrutinize the evidence, challenge witness testimony and dispute the prosecution's version of events, which may cause the charges to be dropped. Another strategy might be to negotiate a plea deal that lets the defendant plead guilty to reduced charges, which may lead to a more lenient sentence.