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Can an entrapment defense be successful in a Texas drug case?


Texas drug laws are harsh and carry severe penalties. Anyone facing charges of possessing, manufacturing or trafficking drugs in Texas needs to put forward an aggressive defense. The defense of entrapment is one that is sometimes raised in drug cases. Entrapment occurs when law enforcement officers persuade a person to commit a crime that he or she would otherwise not have committed.

Entrapment is often a viable defense when the defendant was arrested in an undercover law enforcement sting operation. Entrapment will only be successful as a defense if the court is persuaded the police put undue pressure on the defendant to commit the crime. The defense will not work if the court concludes the defendant was ready and willing to commit the crime, and undercover officers just provided an opportunity.

For example, if a defendant has drugs in their possession, goes to a street corner where drug deals are commonplace, and sells some of the drugs to an undercover police officer, entrapment will probably not work as a defense. But suppose a former drug dealer is trying to go straight, and an undercover police detective repeatedly contacts him and offers large amounts of money for drugs. The former dealer repeatedly refuses, but finally gives in, gets some drugs and sells them to the detective just to get him off his back. In that situation, the entrapment defense might work.

Entrapment should be seriously considered as a defense by anyone arrested on drug trafficking charges, or any charges arising out of a sting operation. An experienced criminal defense attorney can help the defendant determine if it is the right defense for their particular situation.

Source: Findlaw, "Defending Yourself Against a Criminal Charge," accessed Oct. 25, 2015

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