What To Do If You Have Been Charged With The Possession Of Narcotics

Drug charges and the penalties associated with them have become increasingly severe in New Jersey. Even minor drug possession charges can result in a loss of license, lead to jail time, and remain on your permanent employment record. From the smallest marijuana charge, to high-end cocaine and heroin charges, having an experienced and dedicated attorney to fight for your rights is key.

There are, however, a number of viable defenses that can be pursued to achieve a successful result if you have been charged with possession of narcotics. Smith & Gaynor, LLC, provides attentive and specialized representation to individuals and families throughout northern New Jersey and Morris County, including Morris Township, Mount Olive, Morristown and Randolph. Together our attorneys possess a wide range of experience and skill, enabling us to handle whatever legal complications that may arise from your case. Schedule your free consultation today at 973-532-2661.

Controlled Substance Laws And Penalties

In New Jersey, the penalties for possession of a controlled substance vary based on the type of drug and the amount of the drug found in your possession. Even for simple possession of narcotics or controlled dangerous substances, an individual can face three to five years in prison, a fine of $1,000 to $25,000, loss of driver's license, mandatory drug education, and rehabilitation programs. Controlled dangerous substances include cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, acid, Ecstasy, GHB, and all other illegal narcotics, stimulants, hallucinogens, opiates, or depressants.

Here are some of the most common drug offenses and penalties:

  • Marijuana possession: Classified as either a disorderly persons offense or an indictable felony. Depending upon the classification, punishable by up to 18 months in jail, fine of $500 to $15,000, and driver's license suspension for six months to two years.
  • Cocaine possession: Indictable felony. Punishable by three to five years in prison, fine of $1,000 to $35,000, and driver's license suspension for six months to two years.
  • Heroin possession: Indictable felony. Punishable by three to five years in prison, fine of $1,000 to $35,000, and driver's license suspension for six months to two years.

Intent to distribute and drug distribution charges also vary depending on the type of drug as well as the amount. The most common are:

  • Marijuana distribution: Indictable felony. Punishable by zero to 10 years in prison, fine of $750-$100,000, and driver's license suspension for six months to two years.
  • Cocaine distribution: Indictable felony. Punishable by three to 20 years in prison, fine of $1,000-$300,000, and driver's license suspension for six months to two years.
  • Heroin distribution: Indictable felony. Punishable by three to 20 years in prison, fine of $1,000-$300,000, and driver's license suspension for six months to two years.

Drug Paraphernalia Charges

In addition to possession of a controlled substance, you may be charged with possession of drug paraphernalia, which carries a sentence of up to six months in prison, a fine of $500 to $1,000, and suspension of your driver's license for up to two years. For second and subsequent convictions, you could be facing penalties up to twice the amount and duration of those allowed for the underlying offense. You will also face additional penalties if you are charged with possession near school property.

Learn How We Can Protect Your Rights

Robert A. Smith of Smith & Gaynor, LLC, is a certified civil trial attorney committed to building long-lasting partnerships with his clients. His goal is to provide personal but professional legal counsel by building a foundation of honest and open communication.

If you are in need of a criminal defense law firm to handle possession or distribution of narcotics charges brought against you or a loved one, schedule a free consultation with an attorney at Smith & Gaynor, LLC, in our Morristown, New Jersey, office. We will work with you to achieve the best possible outcome in your case.