In December of last year, a “suspicious” FedEx package was intercepted by New York State Police officers; the package was reportedly addressed to a fictitious name, and contained more than 600 grams of heroin. Last week, search warrants were executed at the suspects’ residences and a storage unit suspected to be used by the defendants, 51-year-old Victor Rivera, 25-year-old Chayanne Rivera, and 31-year-old Blake Rivera.
According to news reports, authorities seized large amounts of cocaine, heroin, cash, and guns in the drug bust, calling the three men “major suppliers” and not small-time dealers. On February 22, father and sons were arrested and charged with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute 280 grams or more of crack cocaine, five kilograms or more of cocaine, and 100 grams of heroin. The men were also charged with possession of firearms in furtherance of drug trafficking.
Overall, officers discovered numerous firearms, drugs, and cash at the three residences where the men lived. Items found during the searches included an assault style rifle, a 9mm handgun and .357 magnum revolver, 12 gauge shotguns, an AK 47 style firearm, more than $375,000 in cash, ammunition, and more. Officer say they seized a total of about 8.3 kilograms of cocaine and half a gram of crack cocaine along with the 100 grams of heroin. If convicted, the men could face a life prison term along with a $10 million fine; the mandatory minimum sentence is 15 years in prison.
Drug trafficking charges are among the most serious of all drug offenses. Anyone who is under investigation or has been arrested or charged in Detroit, Lansing, Ann Arbor, or surrounding cities must consult with a highly experienced Michigan drug crimes attorney. Depending on the circumstances, there are often various legal options available. First-time offenders may be eligible for a drug diversion program. Additionally, many defendants in cases where the evidence is substantial may choose to plead to a lesser offense which often results in punishment that is less harsh. Depending on the facts of the case, a defendant may choose to plead not guilty and go to trial.
There are a myriad of options, and many factors that impact how to best proceed when charged with a drug crime. Never face prosecution without benefit of a skilled and aggressive defense lawyer.