Several face drug charges following roundup

Drug charges were recently filed against over 20 people in Louisiana. The drug charges were filed after many law enforcement agencies participated in the roundup of offenders who were wanted on warrants. The warrants were issued for crimes committed during undercover police operations.

Police said they were attempting to clean the streets via an operation that targeted drug trafficking in a city. The agencies that assisted in the joint offender roundup included a city police department, sheriff's office and state police. The operation was called Spring Cleaning.

Authorities issued warrants for different drug violations, including illegally possessing prescription drugs. The most common of the drug violations was distributing crack cocaine. Three of the offenders in this roundup were already in the custody of police on charges not related to the drug charges. The warrants stemmed from multiple months of undercover police investigations, with more police roundups being planned for the days ahead.

When people face drug charges in Louisiana, they have the right to go to trial to vigorously contest the charges. At trial, the prosecution has to prove the charges beyond a reasonable doubt in order for a conviction to take place. Alternatively, a person facing a drug charge might decide to accept a plea deal offered by the prosecution, as the plea deal may lead to reduced charges and/or a lighter sentence than what would typically be imposed if the person were to be found guilty at trial. Either way, the person accused of committing a drug crime has the same legal rights guaranteed to individuals charged with other types of criminal conduct.

Source: klfy.com, "10 arrested in Opelousas warrant roundup", Jade Choyce, March 16, 2016

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