Drug Offenses in New Jersey
If you have committed a drug offense in New Jersey, you could be facing serious charges. Drug offenses include possession charges as well as intent to distribute charges. If convicted of drug charges, you could be subjected to harsh penalties and your record can cause problems for you and your future. Charges and penalties for drug offenses are classified based on their danger and risk of harm.
Reisig & Associates, LLC is known for the experience and excellent track record when it comes to cases handled by certified New Jersey criminal trial attorney Matthew W. Reisig. He has extensive experience defending all types of crimes, including but not limited to drug offenses. At Reisig & Associates, LLC, we understand the intricacies of a drug offense case and know how to put together the best possible defense. We will review your case and represent you every step of the way.
In a recent Monmouth County drug case, Mr. Reisig was able to have a first degree Drug Leader charge dismissed in exchange for his client pleading to a lesser charge. State v. R.C.
Wondering about the charges that will be brought against you as a result of your drug offense? Learn the breakdown of offenses below:
Schedule I – Extremely high risk of abuse (Heroin, Mescalin, LSD, Payote, Psilocybin).
Schedule II – High risk of abuse (Opium, Cocaine, Methadone).
Schedule III –Some risk of abuse (Amphetamines, Methamphetamine, Morphine, and Codeine).
Schedule IV – Low abuse potential (Barbital, Phenobarbital).
Schedule V – Low abuse potential (Morphine and Codeine in low concentrations).
Drug Possession Penalties
The penalties for drug possession charges in New Jersey are based on the schedules outlined above:
Possession of Schedule I, II, III, and IV is a crime in the 3rd degree. This carries a sentence of 3 to 5 years in prison and fines up to $35,000.
Possession of Schedule V is a crime in the 4th degree and carries a sentence of up to 18 months in prison and fines of $15,000.
Possession of Other Drugs – Possession of Gamma Hydroxybutyrate (GHB, Liquid Ecstasy) is a crime in the 3rd degree with a possible sentence of up to 5 years in prison and a fine of up to $100,000.
Marijuana possession charges in New Jersey will depend on the amount of marijuana that was found. Keep in mind that you can be charged with possession even if you aren’t holding the drugs in your hand or pocket. You can be charged with possession when the drugs are anywhere that you have control over such as in your purse, your car, or your lap.
In New Jersey, possession of less than 50 grams (1.76 oz.) is a lesser offense that is charged as a disorderly person’s offense. There are still penalties associated with these charges including up to 6 months in jail and a fine of up to $1,000.
Possession of more than 50 grams is a crime of the 4th degree and carries a sentence of up to 18 months in jail and up to $25,000 in fines upon conviction. Possession of marijuana within 1,000 feet of a school increases your sentence by adding 100 hours of community service.
If you have been charged with possession in New Jersey, an experienced attorney may be able to help you achieve a conditional discharge. This is a special option offered in some instances for those who are first-time offenders. You may be eligible for this option if you have no prior drug convictions on your record.
Intent to Distribute
The most serious of all drug charges is intent to distribute. This means that you have been charged with selling heroin or cocaine. If you have been found to possess more than 5 ounces of heroin or cocaine, the crime is considered a 1st degree criminal charge and carries a prison sentence of up to 20 years with a fine of up to $500,000 if convicted. Those convicted of these charges must serve no less than one third of their sentence before they are eligible for parole.
If you have been accused of selling less than 5 ounces but more than ½ ounce of heroin or cocaine, you will be charged with a 2nd degree crime. A conviction of a 2nd degree crime carries a sentence of 5 to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $150,000.
A charge of selling less than ½ ounce of heroin or cocaine is considered a 3rd degree crime and has a 3 – 5 year prison sentence and $75,000 fine if convicted.
As you can see, intent to distribute has very serious consequences. If you have been charged with this offense you will need to hire an experienced New Jersey criminal defense attorney as quickly as possible. It is important to attain a qualified attorney as soon as possible, as he or she will work to try to reduce your charges and lower your bail. The attorneys of Reisig & Associates, LLC can help you successfully handle your drug offense case.
Contact our office today for a free consultation on your case. We will review your case and provide you with answers to any of your questions. Let us help you resolve your case as quickly as possible.
Reisig & Associates, LLC
New Jersey Criminal Defense Lawyers