Under California Law, drug offenses include possession or possession for sale, trafficking and manufacturing of an illegal substance. In California, controlled substances are narcotics, stimulants, opiates, depressants, hallucinogens, and anabolic steroids. It’s illegal to possess them without a prescription. The most common types of illegal drugs/controlled substances include: barbiturates, cannabis (marijuana), cocaine, crack cocaine, ecstasy (MDMA), hashish, heroin, LSD, mescaline, methamphetamine, morphine, opium, and PCP.
The punishments for drug offenders in California range from a small fine to large fines and jail time. Punishments are determined by the amount and type of the drug involved in the charge, and the activity associated with the drug.
Drug offense penalties can be very serious. You could end up in county jail or state prison. Your car or anything else linked to the drug crime could be taken away (Forfeiture Proceedings). You could lose your driver’s license, have to pay a fine, and/or be required to register as a narcotics offender.
For most controlled substances, possession for personal use is a felony. Misdemeanor charges include marijuana (cannabis) possession, being under the influence of a drug, and possession of drug-related items called paraphernalia (pipes, bongs, etc.).
To be convicted, the prosecution must prove that you knew about and controlled the drug in question. Even if you didn’t have drugs on you when you were arrested, you can be convicted if drugs were found in your car, house, or purse.
It is a felony to possess or buy illegal drugs that you intend to sell. The prosecution doesn’t have to prove that you sold them—just that you intended to sell them. Money need not change hands to be convicted of drug possession for sale.
Intent to sell can be proven by evidence such as drug packaging (small bundles), weighing scales, cutting agents, people coming to/going from your home at all hours, fortified windows, conversations with police informants, undercover officers, or wiretapped telephone (cell, portable or landline) conversations.
California drug traffic laws prohibit the transporting, importing and selling/distribution of controlled substances. Transporting, importing, or selling drugs is a felony, unless you’re arrested with less than 28.5 grams of marijuana (cannabis) and the marijuana is for your own personal use then it is a misdemeanor. You can also be charged and convicted of trafficking if you aided, abetted, and conspired with anyone to sell or purchase illegal drugs.
In California, it is a felony to plant, cultivate (grow, care for) or harvest marijuana, manufacture illegal drugs (such as methamphetamine or rock cocaine) or possess the chemicals necessary to manufacture illegal drugs.
Whatever the offense, a charge against you should not be taken lightly because drug crime charges have far reaching implications that can harm your reputation and prospects for the future.
If you have been charged with a drug offense, you need the advice and defense of a skilled professional.
Dan Koukol is a drug offense defense attorney that has the experience necessary to give you the defense you deserve. Dan consistantly achieves incredible results for his clients facing drug offense consequences.
Call today to schedule your free, confidential consultation.