You are not a drug dealer

As a drug defense lawyer, let me tell you that one of the most dangerous situations to be in is when the government accuses you of being a drug dealer when the police have no physical evidence. The police find none on you or in your property.

If they don’t have drugs, how can they charge me with drug dealing?

Believe it or not in America, the government can charge, jail, convict and send you to prison for a very long time for drug dealing even if the government can’t put a single dose of drug in your hands with a video, picture or even a police officer’s say so. Junkies and snitches and their word alone is all it takes.

High level drug defense lawyers call this a “no weight on the table, snitch built case””.

What it looks like is something like this:

  1. Some junkie gets caught with drugs. The police threaten the junkie with jail (and an end of their drug using and the likely bad result of withdrawal). 
  2. In order to avoid jail (and to keep using drugs), that junkie turns in a supplier.
  3. Maybe the police convince the junkie to do a “controlled buy” (where the police give the junkie marked or serialized cash, sends in the junkie with or without a wire or video surveillance and gets drugs from the “dealer”). Either it’s a buy-walk (where the drug and money is exchanged, but no immediate arrest is made) or it is a buy-bust (where the drug and money is exchanged with an immediate police arrest of the “dealer”). More than likely, this supplier is a junkie too simply looking to support their habit.
  4. The police threaten long jail terms to that “dealer”. So that person has to “flip” or “snitch” on anyone else in order to remain free or get a reduced sentence.
  5. The next thing you know, there’s pounding on the door with the SWAT team screaming “POLICE! SEARCH WARRANT!” at ridiculous o’clock in the morning. They put everyone in the house in handcuffs. The police tear your house up seizing everything, even stuff that is not drug related. The officers arrest you for drug dealing even though they find no drugs. Shortly thereafter when you are in jail trying to figure out what the hell just happened, some politician declares “victory” on the “war on drugs” with you ending up on a silly poster-board like this one:

Photo Credit: Bucks County District Attorney’s Office

Do the police really charge people with drug dealing even if they had no drugs on them?

Not only do they build these types of cases, your taxpayer money teaches the local police how to do it. Federal law enforcement agencies such as the DEA and others such as Northeast Counterdrug Training Center (NCTC) teach courses on how to do this exact thing. Don’t believe us? Here’s the proof: NCTC courses

Drug Defense Lawyer
Drug Defense Lawyer at The McShane Firm


Don’t think this happens?

It sure does. Folks who were convicted or pled guilty to drug charges even though there were no drugs seized fill our state and federal prisons. It is so frequent in America that people get drug dealing charges with no drugs seized that it is a specialization in the drug defense attorney world. There are plenty of ways for us to challenge these “no weight, snitch built cases”. Here’s a short video we made about these types of cases:


The government can charge anyone with a drug offense even if they don’t seize any drugs. Judges all over America hand out countless decades of incarceration on these cases every day. Don’t let a say so of junkies and rats or snitches ruin your life.

We can and will defend you in drug cases. Call us 717-657-3900.

Additional recommended reading:

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PA DUI attorney Justin J. McShane is the President/CEO of The McShane Firm, LLC - Pennsylvania's top criminal law and DUI law firm. He is the highest rated DUI attorney in PA as rated by Justin McShane is a double Board certified attorney. He is the first and so far the only Pennsylvania attorney to achieve American Bar Association recognized board certification in DUI defense from the National College for DUI Defense, Inc. He is also a Board Certified Criminal Trial Advocate by the National Board of Trial Advocacy, a Pennsylvania Supreme Court Approved Agency.