H. Michael Steinberg has over 32 years experience practicing Colorado criminal law. Mr. Steinberg strives to stay current with the ever changing aspects of criminal law issues and updates resulting in his extensive knowledge of successful criminal defense as well as appellate work. He is also an active member of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, the Colorado Criminal Defense Bar Association, the Colorado Trial Lawyer's Association, and the Colorado and Arapahoe Bar Associations.

Articles Posted in Colorado Drug Crimes

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In 2013 – The Colorado State legislature enacted a long awaited law that has the potential to change the lives of tens of thousands of citizens around the country.

The new law – expands Colorado’s present expungement – record sealing laws, to now allow petty offenses and municipal ordinance violations to be sealed after three years have run since last contact with the criminal justice system and with a clean record since that time

Here is a LINK to this very complex new law – SB 123 –

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Introduction – A March 2012 case decided by the Colorado Supreme Court – People v. Esparza, has held that a drug sniffing dog can smell outside a defendant’s parked vehicle without the police having reasonable suspicion of the presence of contraband, and that such use of the dog does not constitute a “search” under the Colorado Constitution’s protections against unreasonable search and seizure.

In one fell swoop – the Court ignored a line of cases that required some measure of evidence before law enforcement would have authority to conduct the search. This quantum of evidence is known as reasonable suspicion.

The Facts Of The Case – The Government brought an appeal assigning of the Trial Court’s decision to suppress contraband seized from defendant’s vehicle on two occasions.

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In June of 2012 Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper signed a bill outlawing the use of cathinones, commonly referred to as “bath salts.”

What have been called the most dangerous and addictive drugs to hit Colorado in many years, the Colorado State Legislature passed the new law very quickly. One must ask why?

The new law, passed and enacted on the signature of the Governor creates a criminal penalty for the possession of cathinones, the dangerous chemical used in bath salts.

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A new Colorado Drug Crime Law is winding it’s way through the Colorado State Legislature. SB 12-163 if passsed by the Senate and signed into law by the governor, would reduce the penalty for possession of four grams or less of certain drugs from a class six felony to a class one misdemeanor, according to a weekly legislative report from Colorado Counties Incorporated.

The penalty for possession of more than four grams of certain drugs would be reduced from a class six felony to a class four felony under the bill’s provisions.

The bill appropriates the savings from the reduction in the criminal penalties to substance abuse treatment programs. The department of human services will develop a trauma-informed substance abuse treatment and best practices training program. The bill requires a post-enactment review after two years that addresses the impact of the bill on jails and the amount of funding for jail-based treatment.

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The use of informants has always been a bane to the enforcement of the War on Drugs in the United States. Informants seeking to help themselves often serve up questionable unvetted “intel” that results in major injustice to those later investigated and arrested on less than accurate information. Lives are destroyed.

After a country wide scandal involving crimes committed by so called FBI informants, U.S. Representative Stephen F. Lynch (D-MA) has introduced important new legislation that would require federal investigative agencies to report their informants’ serious crimes to Congress. H.R. 3228,

If passed – and it should be – The Confidential Informant Accountability Act, would require the FBI, the DEA, Secret Service, ICE and ATF to report every six months to Congress all “serious crimes” committed by their informants, whether or not those crimes were authorized.