Chicago Crime Lawyer Resources

Alternatives to a Drug Case Trial

Drug school and other alternatives to a drug case trial often are better options than going to trial on an Illinois drug case. Work with the leading drug crime lawyers in Chicago, Illinois to determine your best strategy for your drug case. Call our criminal defense attorneys today at (312) 466-9466.

There are a number of alternatives to avoid a drug case trial. In working with our clients, we explain all available options. Alternatives to a trial that can be explored include Drug School, Expungeable Probation, Treatment Alternatives for Special Clients (TASC), and Deferred Prosecution.

Drug School

A person charged in Cook County with a simple possession of a small amount of drugs should consider having their lawyer try to persuade the prosecutor to offer "drug school."

Drug school is a pre-trial diversion in which the defendant agrees to waive his right to a preliminary hearing and attend classes which educate about the perils of drug use. If the defendant successfully completes the classes and returns to court with proof, the case will be dismissed.

This program is only available to first time offenders with little or no criminal history, no evidence of sales and a small amount of drugs. This option is usually the best one because it gives the defendant control. As long as he completes the classes, his case is over. Anyone dealing with the Federal Department of Immigration and Customs Enforcement should be careful, however, because they view any diversion as a conviction.

Expungeable Probation

If a trial will have an uncertain outcome, expungeable probation, or, in other words, eraseable probation, may be the best option.

A first-offender charged with a simple possession of drugs under 720 ILCS 550/10, 720 570/410, 720 ILCS 570/312(j), 20 ILCS 301/40-10 may be eligible to have his criminal record removed after successful completion of probation under one of these statutes. For more information, go to

Treatment Alternatives for Special Clients (TASC)

Under certain circumstances, an addict or alcoholic who is charged with or convicted of a crime may elect treatment as part of his sentence.

Not every person is eligible, but a defendant with one or more felony convictions in his background may wish to pursue treatment as part of his sentence in order to persuade the sentencing judge to consider a sentence of probation.

In cases like this the attorney must request a TASC evaluation. TASC stands for "treatment alternatives for special clients", and a defendant must be deemed eligible by a TASC representative. Defendants are eligible for TASC for crimes other than drug crimes, but crimes of violence and several other types of felonies are not eligible. A TASC recommendation is a very powerful tool for a skilled defense attorney to use when persuading a sentencing judge to impose probation instead of prison. See 20 ILCS 301/40-5 and 40-10.

Deferred Prosecution

Under select circumstances, those with drug charges can elect to participate in Deferred Prosecution, a program in which a defendant agrees to fulfill requirements of a 12-month probationary period. If all requirements are completed, the drug charges will be dropped. For more information on Deferred Prosecution, and to see if you are eligible for this program, visit More Information on Deferred Prosecution

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