Just because a person uses drugs doesn’t necessarily make them a
bad person. Citizens of New Jersey who are otherwise law abiding often
commit crimes to fuel their own addiction rather than to cause harm to
society. After decades of enforcing harsh anti-drug laws, the federal
government is starting to realize this. It seems that they are also realizing
that both the social and monetary cost of incarceration for low-level
drug charges may be too high.
The Attorney General recently announced that the Justice Department has
been reviewing federal drug laws and mandatory sentences since the beginning
of the year. He believes that many Americans are being punished too severely
for non-violent, drug related crimes. Assuming that those people do not
associate with gangs, cartels or other large drug organizations they will
not be charged with federal offences that carry lengthy minimum sentences.
Instead, it is expected more Americans will be prosecuted according to
new local guidelines included in the overhaul. This could not only mean
lesser sentences for those who are charged with drug crimes in the future,
but it may also mean that those currently incarcerated could be eligible
for early release. More information on the overhaul will soon be forthcoming.
If you or a close friend or family member is facing drug charges of any
kind, you may want to consult with a criminal defense attorney to see
how the new federal drug laws will affect your case. There may be options
to get the charges reduced and minimize the long-term consequences.
“Justice Dept to drop some mandatory drug sentences,” David Ingram, August 12, 2013