When is a Drug Possession Charge a Felony?
The Garden State has many strict laws in place in regard to possession of a controlled substance that carry extremely severe penalties.
Generally, the charge will be based on the type of drug and the amounts involved. The range in these matters can lead to charges resulting in disorderly persons offenses or felony charges. Punishments in these matters can carry punishments from fines to prison time.
Felonies Carry Heavy Penalties
Typically, to be found in possession of a controlled substance — cocaine, heroin, oxycontin, ecstasy, etc. — is a felony in the third degree. The punishment for this type of conviction is three to five years in jail with a fine of $1,000 to $25,000. You could also lose your driver’s license and be subject to mandatory drug education and rehabilitation programs. Another offense considered a felony in New Jersey is simple possession of unauthorized prescription drugs. This can be a third-degree indictable offense and carries a penalty of up to five years in jail with substantial fines.
An example of a disorderly persons offense (not a felony) is possession of less than 50 grams of marijuana. This also carries a maximum jail sentence of up to six months in jail, possible fine of up to 1,000 and a loss of driver’s privileges for up to 1 year. The offense jumps to a fourth-degree felony if you are found in possession of more than 50 grams of marijuana. Possession of marijuana in the fourth degree carries with it a maximum prison sentence of up to 18 months and a maximum discretionary fine of up to $15,000.
Again, the punishments for these types of crimes are graded according to a schedule. You specific circumstances will play a big hand in what charges and possible convictions you will face.
It is important to reach out to an experienced criminal defense attorney to discuss your charges.
NJ Legal Team Ready to Defend You
If you or a loved one is facing drug possession charges or other charges related to drug crimes, the right criminal defense lawyer will assist you in preparing the best defense for your case. . In New Jersey, the legal team at Bramnick, Rodriguez, Grabas, Arnold & Mangan, LLC, have the expertise to defend you from your charges.
They understand just how complex drug charges can be and will put their knowledge to work building you a strong defense. They handle all types of drug charges from possession and possession with intent to distribute to juvenile drug charges and trafficking or smuggling charges. Just fill out the confidential online contact form to begin discussing your case today.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney-client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.