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The rise in heroin sales and related deaths in St. Louis

If your arrest was for heroin possession, you are probably very nervous about the penalties and how this will affect your future, especially if this is your first offense.

You will face felony charges, but on the other hand, you are still alive, which is not the reality for some of those who have gotten too close to the drug traffickers.

A surge in sales

St. Louis is one city among many in which the sale of heroin has surged in recent years along with an increase in homicides. The murder of an innocent women in 2016 was tracked to a St. Louis street gang linked to a Mexican cartel whose traffickers peddle cheap heroin. These days, the heroin is of better quality than in years past, and the gang members sell it for as low as $5 per button to attract new customers. Investigators have determined that the heroin traffickers' supplier is the Sinaloa cartel in Mexico, well known because of its leader, Joaquin Guzman Loera, the drug kingpin commonly known as El Chapo.

The customers and the victims

In the St. Louis area, many of the customers for heroin are young men in their twenties. They are white, they live in the suburbs and they drive into the city to buy the drug. Murder victims, on the other hand, are mostly African-American boys and men. An exception is the woman who heard gunshots, looked out the window of her apartment and was felled by random bullets.

Seeking help

Possession of heroin is usually a Class C Felony, and you could be looking at as much as $5,000 in fines and up to seven years in prison. However, an experienced criminal attorney will assure you that there are options to explore. This would include thoroughly examining the circumstances of your arrest and challenging the evidence the prosecution brings against you. You probably realize you made a mistake in buying heroin on the street, but you will not have to fight the charge alone.

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