For a person to be found guilty of drug possession, prosecutors must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant willingly and knowingly had control over an illegal substance or a controlled drug that was not prescribed to the person. To be found guilty of drug trafficking, prosecutors must also prove that the person not only possessed the drug, but intended to sell it. There is much that needs to be presented in order for a person to be found guilty of drug distribution. Proving that any of these necessary factors were not present in a prosecutor’s claim can help strengthen a defendant’s case.

Police are accusing three people of distributing a synthetic drug that contributed to the death of a Texas teen. According to reports, the three face a number of charges, including conspiracy to possess and distribute a synthetic drug known as 25I-NBOMe. The chemical had only recently been added to the federal schedule of controlled substances. It was temporarily included a month prior to the death of the Texas teen.

The Texas teen’s tragic death occurred after he mistakenly took the synthetic drug under the impression that it was LSD. The properties of the synthetic chemical are similar to that of LSD, only more potent. He reacted to the potent chemical and died as a result. Three other people involved were taken to the hospital.

Following the teen’s death, the three people accused of distributing the drug were arrested after an investigation and will now face federal drug crimes. They face serious penalties, including the potential for a sentence of 20 years to life in prison and fines of up to $20 million.

Source: The Dallas Morning News, “3 face federal drug charges in Frisco teen’s overdose death,” Julieta Chiquillo, May 6, 2014