Drug charges are always serious matters, but if you are accused of dealing drugs or selling drugs, these are a bit more serious than possession charges. Oftentimes, a person who is accused of possession might be able to enter into the drug court program to try to get assistance for the addiction. This usually isn't possible for a person who is facing a charge for selling or dealing drugs.
When you are charged with a drug crime, one factor that you have to consider is whether you are facing state or federal charges. These are very different matters because of the specific points in the laws on each of the levels.
Typically, federal charges are reserved for cases that involve the drugs going across state lines. State-level charges are more likely to come from cases that involve only activity in the state. When federal or state charges are possible, the federal charges will always have the opportunity to move forward before the state charges.
If federal charges are filed, the state-level charges won't proceed if they are based on the same instance. This is why prosecutors have to make some decisions at the start of the case. There is no sense in trying to investigate a case and prepare it for trial if another agency that has precedence is going to be the one to handle things.
You should make sure that you are considering the points of the case against you when you are trying to formulate your defense strategy. This can help you to address the necessary points.
Source: FindLaw, "Drug Dealing and Drug Sales Charges," accessed June 08, 2018