In Virginia, possession with intent to distribute, sell, give or manufacture a controlled substance is a very serious offense, typically carrying harsher penalties than mere possession. If you find yourself facing a possession with intent charge, an experienced Manassas possession with intent lawyer can help you understand the charges and penalties you are up against and can analyze the evidence in your case in order to build a strong defense on your behalf. Call a Manassas drug lawyer to discuss your case and how to proceed.
Under Virginia Code 18.2-248, the law does not distinguish between possession with intent to distribute and actual distribution, manufacturing, selling or giving of the drug. Rather, the severity of the alleged offense and the penalties it carries depend on the type and amount of controlled substance involved.
No matter what kind of drug you are accused of possessing with intent, your Manassas possession with intent attorney can investigate the strength of the case against you and pursue reduced or dismissed charges and penalties.
Penalties for possession with intent in Virginia range from up to 12 months in jail and up to $2500 in fines for Class 1 misdemeanor possession with intent to distribute a schedule V or VI controlled substance, to five to 40 years in prison and up to $500,000 in fines for possession with intent to distribute a schedule I or II substance that is not methamphetamine. Your Manassas possession with intent lawyer can pursue reduced penalties, though.
Under the law governing possession with intent, there are numerous circumstances that call for enhanced or mandatory minimum penalties. Possessing with intent to distribute cocaine, methamphetamines, heroin, marijuana, or ecgonine worth $250,000 or more as part of an ongoing criminal enterprise is considered a felony offense carrying a penalty of up to life in prison without the possibility of parole and $1 million in fines, for instance.
Having prior convictions for a drug-related offense can also result in heightened penalties and mandatory minimum jail sentences. The penalty for possessing with intent to distribute a schedule I or II substance that is not methamphetamine jumps to ten years to life in prison and $500,000 in fines with a mandatory minimum of at least 10 years, when the accused as two or more prior convictions for the offense.
Possession with intent to distribute smaller, more common amounts of marijuana is treated differently than other schedule I controlled substances. Possessing with intent to distribute less than half an ounce of marijuana is considered a Class 1 misdemeanor punishable by up to 12 months in jail and $2500 in fines. Possessing with intent to distribute between half an ounce to five pounds of marijuana is considered a Class 5 felony punishable by one to ten years in prison, and more than five pounds of the drug is considered a felony carrying a penalty of between five and thirty years in prison.
Whether you are ch or another substance, it is important to have a Manassas possession with intent attorney on your side.
It is crucial to consult an experienced Manassas possession with intent lawyer right away if you are charged with possessing with intent any type of drug or controlled substance. While the penalties can be quite severe, there are many provisions under the law allowing the court to reduce penalties at its discretion and under certain circumstances.
Your Manassas possession with intent attorney can ask the court to consider, for instance, the fact that you have no prior convictions for violent offenses and no violence was involved in the alleged possession with intent to distribute, no firearm was used, no one was seriously hurt or killed, and you have not been involved in an ongoing larger criminal drug enterprise.
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