There are federal, state and local drug laws in place that prohibit the possession, distribution, trafficking and manufacturing of illegal drugs. Over half of state and local arrests are for possession of marijuana. Though many states have begun to legalize marijuana for recreational use however, it remains illegal in New Jersey. A conviction for possessing as little as 50 grams can result in up to six months jail time and $1,000 in fines. The Camden County criminal defense legal team at the Law Offices of Thomas J. Gosse is dedicated to helping those charged with drug crimes in New Jersey avoid such harsh penalties.
Possession of marijuana, drug paraphernalia, controlled substances and prescription drugs without a prescription are illegal in the state of New Jersey. Possession of prescription drugs such as OxyContin, Vicodin and Adderall without a prescription may result in charges of illegal possession, intent to sell, or even pharmaceutical drug fraud. Possession of controlled substances such as cocaine, heroin and methamphetamines can result in more severe penalties depending on the amount possessed and the circumstances of the case.
Cocaine possession penalties may include up to five years’ jail time and fines of up to $35,000. Heroin is classified as a Schedule 1 drug under the New Jersey Controlled Dangerous Substances Law. Being found under the influence of heroin or in possession of heroin may result in up to five years imprisonment, $35,000 in fines and a mandatory six-month driver’s license suspension. Possession of methamphetamines may result in similarly serious penalties, including a prison sentence of up to five years and fines of up to $35,000.
Several aggravating factors may significantly increase the penalties associated with possessing these drugs in New Jersey, including:
Possessing a certain amount of drugs in New Jersey will result in a legal assumption of intent to distribute. Therefore, just being within 500 feet of a public park or within 1,000 feet of a school zone with a certain amount of drugs will typically be enough to establish intent to distribute therein, regardless of the accused’s true intention. If you are facing drug charges in New Jersey, it is imperative to speak with an experienced Camden County drug crime lawyer who can advocate on your behalf and ensure that your constitutional rights are upheld.
Whether one is charged with distribution or trafficking depends on the amount of drugs involved and whether the accused crossed state lines. Crossing state lines or possession of larger amounts of drugs will typically result in federal trafficking charges, which carry higher sentences than distribution. Depending on the type, amount and circumstances of possession (such as being within 500 feet of a public housing or park zone or 1,000 feet of a school zone), trafficking convictions can carry sentences of 25 years in prison and $500,000 fines.
Possession with intent to distribute charges can result in similarly serious penalties depending on the type and amount of controlled substance, the location where the defendant was apprehended, and the defendant’s criminal history. Prosecutors need not prove that an actual sale took place to establish the elements of this crime; the amount of the drug in possession may be enough to prove intent to distribute.
Under both federal law and New Jersey law, anyone who is involved in the cultivation or manufacture of a controlled substance may be charged with manufacturing a controlled substance. Penalties for this crime include jail time, fines, drug offender registration, probation and mandatory rehabilitation. A Camden County drug crime lawyer at the Law Offices of Thomas J. Gosse will fight to have your drug charges dismissed, reduced or have your case moved to Drug Court where defendants receive rehabilitation instead of incarceration.
If you are facing New Jersey drug charges, contact the Law Offices of Thomas J. Gosse, an experienced Camden County criminal law firm. Given the serious penalties associated with drug crimes, it is imperative that you consult with a skilled, knowledgeable criminal lawyer who can assist in your defense. At the Law Offices of Thomas J. Gosse, we aggressively fight for our clients’ rights and freedom. A Camden County drug crime lawyer will work tirelessly to obtain the best possible outcome in your case. We represent defendants throughout South Jersey from our offices conveniently located in Haddon Heights, including those in Cherry Hill, Moorestown, and Haddonfield, New Jersey. Submit an online contact form or call us at 856-546-6600 or toll-free at 800-989-1575 to discuss your case today.