Arizona Implements Tougher Sentencing for Fentanyl Dealers

Investigative Article

The Truth Behind Arizona’s Increased Prison Sentences for Fentanyl Dealers

Fentanyl, the extremely potent synthetic opioid, has been wreaking havoc across the United States. It has surpassed heroin as the deadliest drug in America, causing tens of thousands of overdose deaths every year. Recently, Arizona has passed a new law, the Ashely Dunn Act, that promises to increase the minimum prison sentence for fentanyl dealers. But what are the details of this new law, and will it have the intended effect of combatting the fentanyl crisis? Let’s investigate.

The Ashely Dunn Act

The Ashely Dunn Act is named after a 22-year-old Arizona resident who died of a fentanyl overdose in 2018. The law establishes a mandatory prison sentence for individuals convicted of selling, manufacturing, or transporting fentanyl. Specifically, the law sets the minimum sentence at 5 years for less than 4 grams of fentanyl, 10 years for 4 to 14 grams, and 15 years for 14 to 28 grams or more. The maximum sentence for any of these offenses is life in prison.

Arizona’s Sentencing Guidelines

How does Arizona’s new law compare to other states’ penalties for fentanyl offenses? The truth is, Arizona is actually late to the party in terms of cracking down on fentanyl dealers. Many other states have already passed similar laws or have established mandatory minimum sentences for fentanyl offenses under existing drug laws. Nevertheless, Arizona’s new law is a step in the right direction, as it enables law enforcement to go after fentanyl dealers more aggressively.

Defenses to Dealing Fentanyl

What about defendants who are caught dealing fentanyl? Do they have any defenses available to them? In general, there are two types of defenses: factual and legal. Factual defenses challenge whether the defendant actually committed the offense. For example, the defendant might argue that the drugs found on them were not fentanyl, or that they were not intending to sell them. Legal defenses, on the other hand, challenge the prosecution’s ability to prove the defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. For instance, the defendant might argue that the search and seizure conducted by the police was unlawful. These defenses can vary depending on the circumstances of the case and the specific laws of the jurisdiction.

Federal Defense Attorney Josh Kolsrud

If you are facing charges for a fentanyl offense, you need a skilled and experienced attorney who can help you navigate the complex legal system. Josh Kolsrud is a federal defense attorney who has helped numerous clients in cases involving drug offenses. He is familiar with the nuances of federal drug laws and has successfully fought cases at all stages of the legal process. With his help, you can mount a strong defense and ensure that your rights are protected.

The Bottom Line

Arizona’s new law, the Ashely Dunn Act, aims to increase the minimum prison sentence for individuals convicted of dealing fentanyl. While the law is a positive step toward addressing the fentanyl crisis, it is not a panacea. Many other states have already taken similar action, and it remains to be seen whether Arizona’s law will have a significant impact on the epidemic. If you are facing charges for a fentanyl offense, it is crucial that you seek legal counsel from an experienced attorney like Josh Kolsrud.




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