In late July, an Idaho man pleaded guilty to drug charges in a federal court in Oregon. The charges stemmed from a small plane crash that took place in Medford in June 2019.

According to court documents, the 36-year-old defendant and another man were flying a Beech 35 Bonanza plane on June 8, 2019, when it had mechanical problems and crashed on a residential street. When police removed the men’s bags from the wreckage, they discovered 5.5 pounds of butane honey oil, which is concentrated marijuana extract. The defendant told investigators that he and his alleged accomplice paid around $1,500 a pound for the oil in Cave Junction, Oregon, earlier that day and were in the process of flying the stash back home to Boise, Idaho, when the accident occurred. Both men were arrested, and the drugs were seized.

The defendant pleaded guilty to possession of hashish oil with the intent to distribute, which carries a penalty of a maximum of five years in prison. However, as part of a plea deal, federal prosecutors will push for a more lenient sentence if he accepts responsibility for his actions. The other man, who piloted the plane, pleaded not guilty to multiple charges, including operating an unregistered aircraft and possession of hashish oil with the intent to distribute. His trial is scheduled for September.

People who have been accused of drug crimes may help their situation by contacting a criminal defense attorney right away. After reviewing a case’s details, a lawyer may find grounds to successfully fight the allegations in court. Alternatively, legal counsel may recommend that his or her client accept a plea deal where the accused pleads guilty to lesser charges, which could lead to a lighter sentence.