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Aiding and Abetting Challenge Wins Convicted Heroin Dealer New Sentence

A dealer whose heroin put a man in hospital will be re-sentenced after a federal appeals panel agreed that she wasn’t to blame for the overdose. Teria Anderson sold the toxic dope, dubbed Kansas City smack, in a chain that ultimately led to Ian Buchanan, whose consumption in 2017 forced paramedics in Indianapolis to revive him. A district court judge found Anderson guilty of both distribution and conspiracy and added a sentencing enhancement for causing Buchanan’s bodily injury.

Anderson appealed the 300-month stretch, contending the distribution conviction was compromised by the fact that she played no direct role in the sale. While testimony recounted a history of buys and consignments sufficient to make the conspiracy rap stick, the dealer that sold the Kansas City smack to Buchanan was not in that loop. Anderson argued that she had no liability under law for Buchanan’s overdose because she didn’t participate in the transaction.

In vacating the distribution conviction, appellate judges in the 7th Circuit agreed with Anderson that the lower court’s failure to designate the charges to which the enhancement that added 10 years to the sentence was applied offered additional grounds for resentencing. They cited case law from the 1930s that demands proof of a direct link in aiding and abetting charges and its subsequent affirmation in the Chicago-based court’s decisions.

The DuPage County Criminal Defense Lawyers at The Chicagoland Law Firm represent clients in federal court, including in 7th Circuit appeals. Our experienced team of legal professionals works diligently to help clients achieve the best outcomes possible given the facts in their case. Contact our offices in Downers Grove and downtown Chicago for a free consultation. We are your best defense.