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16 people arrested in New Jersey on drug charges, more to come

When law enforcement officials target illegal drug operations in their investigations, they are usually focusing on what most people call hard drugs, like cocaine and heroin. In New Jersey, it appears that law enforcement agencies have been busy this year, as reports surfaced recently of yet another sweep of arrests targeting an alleged drug trafficking group.

According to the reports, 16 people were arrested for federal drug crimes recently, and another two people who were already in custody saw more charges filed against them, after an investigation in the southern part of New Jersey apparently came to a conclusion. The arrests occurred on May 7, and at that time an additional five people were also being tracked down. All of the arrestees and suspects reportedly face a range of conspiracy and drug possession charges related to heroin, cocaine and crack cocaine possession and distribution.

Federal drug crimes can often be much tougher on a defendant than state-level charges. Planning a criminal defense strategy in federal court is difficult because federal investigations are oftentimes much more thorough than investigations conducted by state agencies, simply because the federal government has much more in the way of resources. However, that doesn't mean that a defendant facing federal drug charges is without options.

It doesn't matter if an arrestee faces charges in federal or state court. Everyone who is arrested in New Jersey has a right to see the evidence that is being used in the case against them. One of the first steps in building a criminal defense case is to conduct a comprehensive review of that evidence, because any evidence that was obtained in violation of an individual's rights could be suppressed.

Source: New Jersey Herald, "22 accused of roles in drug trafficking groups," May 7, 2014

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