Criminal Justice Reform: Drug Offenses

On April 13, 2018, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker signed into law a new bill that made a number of important changes to the Massachusetts Criminal Justice System. Some of the most significant changes for criminal defendants relate to the re-organization of certain drug laws. Fentanyl and other opioids Given the national opioid crisis in the country, the Massachusetts Legislature used this bill to address some of the laws related to certain synthetic opioids. First, multiple varieties of fentanyl and carfentanil have been re-defined as “Class A” drugs. Possession or distribution charges for Class…Read more

Criminal Justice Reform: Good Samaritan Law

On April 13, 2018, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker signed into law a new bill that made a number of important changes to the Massachusetts Criminal Justice System. One part of the law that was amended was the “Good Samaritan Law.” The “Good Samaritan Law” (M.G.L. c. 94C § 34A), protects from criminal prosecution people who experience drug overdoses, and people who call for emergency medical help for another person experiencing a drug overdose. The law was put in place in order to encourage people to seek medical assistance for drug overdoses, without fear…Read more