Like most American cities, Boston sees its fair share of gang activity, and has done so since the days of the Irish Mob in the early 19th century. By definition, gangs involve some form of organized criminal activity which often involves multiple individuals or groups working together. Unfortunately, when law enforcement targets gangs, innocent people who may associate with gang members may be implicated. In addition, simply because one gang member engaged in a particular criminal act does not necessarily impute legal culpability to other members of the gang. As a result, anyone facing criminal prosecution based on alleged gang activity should discuss his or her options with an experienced Boston criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible.
The Boston Globe is reporting that local and federal law enforcement have arrested at least 41 individuals out of 48 who have been accused of various gun and drug offenses in relation to their activities as members of the Columbia Point Dawgs. The gang is named after the Columbia Point housing development, which was razed in the 1980s. According to the report, 31 guns were confiscated and $1.5 million in cash was seized as a result of the investigation. In addition, authorities seized 11 cars and placed liens on homes that they suspect were purchased with the proceeds of illegal drug sales. Members of the gang have been accused of a variety of violent crimes throughout the years, including the recent shooting of a car in Mansfield, Massachusetts.
Law enforcement sweeps can result in false arrests, violations of rights
When local and federal authorities investigate alleged criminal activity, they are required to follow certain legal rules. The 4th Amendment of the United States Constitution protects people from unreasonable search and seizure – when this rule is violated, it may result in any evidence gathered as a result of the search or seizure being excluded from legal proceedings. Some instances of law enforcement activity that may violate the 4th Amendment includes:
· Warrantless searches of your home, vehicle, or person
· The seizure of personal property
· An arrest not based on probable cause
· Searches of the content of a computer or cell phone
The legal rules regarding the suppression of evidence are not self-executing, meaning that a defendant must raise the issue to the court. In many cases, people without formal legal training do not understand how to inform their court about their argument or may not even be aware of the fact that their legal rights have been violated. As a result, is important for anyone who has been accused of a crime to have an experienced attorney review the facts of his or her case.
Contact a Boston criminal defense attorney to schedule a free case evaluation
Anyone who is under investigation or facing formal allegations of criminal misconduct should retain legal counsel as soon as possible. In many cases, the earlier an attorney becomes involved, the better the outcome for the accused. Massachusetts criminal defense lawyer Edward R. Molari is dedicated to representing the legal rights of individuals accused of a variety of criminal offenses in the Boston area. To schedule a free consultation, please call our office today at 617-942-1532 or send us an email through our online contact form available here.