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Bringing drugs to New Hampshire from another state is technically trafficking

On Behalf of | May 30, 2024 | Criminal Defense

The term drug trafficking often makes people think about the sale of prohibited drugs and even prescription medication. While many trafficking charges do relate to the unlicensed distribution of controlled substances, not all trafficking offenses involve involvement in criminal enterprise or the pursuit of financial gain.

Drug trafficking in New Hampshire can also involve illegally transporting substances, especially if someone crosses state lines with drugs that they acquired elsewhere. Someone stopped by the police on their way back to New Hampshire with drugs they legally purchased elsewhere in New England could theoretically be at risk of drug trafficking charges rather than simple possession charges like they might expect to face.

The legality at the point of purchase doesn’t matter

It is quite common for people to assume that reciprocity rules about state laws may protect them from criminal charges if they acquire a drug in a state where it is legal. Given that New Hampshire has lagged behind many other states when it comes to reforming drug policy, people might think it is safe to drive elsewhere, make a purchase that is legal in that location and then return to New Hampshire with what they acquired.

Sadly, quite a few New Hampshire residents learn about the folly of that endeavor only after they get arrested. Police officers in New Hampshire do not care if someone currently in New Hampshire did not break the law at the time that they acquired a drug. What they care about is whether having it in New Hampshire is a crime and whether someone may have brought those drugs in from another jurisdiction.

A seemingly benign transaction that could lead to no consequences or penalties at the point of sale could have profound and lasting consequences for the person involved when they return to New Hampshire. Those accused of a traffic no offense may need to consider carefully how they intend to respond to those allegations.

A guilty plea to drug trafficking charges could mean a lifetime of legal challenges that affect not just job opportunities but also educational pursuits. Learning about New Hampshire’s unique drug statutes can be a wise move for those who might like to take advantage of more lenient drug possession laws in other states.

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