When a Texas resident is charged with a drug crime, he or she is guaranteed an opportunity to refute the charges in court. Not every person facing illegal drug charges such as trafficking, manufacturing or possession gets convicted. In fact, if a defendant can show that his or her personal rights were violated leading up to or following arrest, the judge overseeing the case may order a dismissal.

There are currently 14 people in Sweetwater who are likely spending time this week researching their defense strategy options. They were all arrested as part of a drug conspiracy investigation. The investigation has been ongoing for some time. In January, as well as in November of last year, at least 13 other arrests took place in connection with the same task force assignment.

Ages of those arrested range from 28 to 51. The co-defendants are charged with crimes involving heroin and methamphetamine. Police say they are still searching for three other people for whom they also have arrest warrants. The court will make decisions on a case-by-case basis, which means every outcome will not necessarily be the same.

Prosecutors have to convince the court that drug trafficking, manufacturing, selling or possession took place (depending on specific charges in each case). Many Texas defendants in past cases have been able to protect their rights and preserve their freedom by relying on experienced criminal defense representation in court. Most defendants request legal representation soon after they are arrested and, in some cases, even before an arrest has taken place.