A man who tested positive for drugs and refused to acknowledge his involvement with a drug ring based in Ogdensburg was taken into custody on Sept. 30 during his sentencing. The defendant was originally taken into custody on Dec. 6 during an apartment drug raid conducted by Ogdensburg police. The raids were the result of a crack cocaine trafficking investigation.
Prior to his sentencing, the judge ordered that the defendant undergo drug testing administered by probation officers. The man tested positive for THC. In an earlier hearing, the man pleaded guilty to one of the drug charges against him, a class B felony charge of third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance. During the hearing, the man denied being at the residence that had been raided and that he was unaware of the presence of drugs there. The man was denied bail and returned to custody.
The fact that the defendant pleaded guilty in this case might indicate that he had agreed to a plea bargain. In some cases, defendants agree to plead guilty in exchange for reduced penalties because they wish to avoid the uncertain outcome of a trial. The plea agreement may be arranged by the defendant's attorney and the prosecution. The defendant has the choice whether or not to take the agreement.
In certain circumstances, the attorney might recommend a jury trial. A trial might be advantageous to the defense if there are issues to address such as contaminated evidence or police misconduct. The attorney might file a motion to have the evidence excluded from proceedings. If the prosecution has no evidence to present, it might be difficult to win a conviction. If police made procedural errors, the attorney might file a motion to have the case dismissed.
Source: Watertown Daily Times, "Buffalo man jailed after denial to involvement in Ogdensburg drug ring", W.T. ECKERT, October 01, 2013