Drug laws and accompanying penalties can be severe, even for first-time offenders. These harsh penalties can impact your life both personally and professionally. Consulting a McLean drug lawyer to develop the most effective defense strategy could help to minimize these effects. Additionally, a skilled defense attorney could guide you through the complex criminal proceedings and addresses any concerns you may have. En Español.
The amount of narcotics, the nature of the crime, as well as the schedule of the drug influences the charge an individual may recieve. Based on federal law, this classification system categorizes controlled substances into six separate schedules. Classification occurs based on the danger of the drug to the public, its potential for abuse, and any accepted medical uses.
As a result, Schedule I contains drugs that are considered to be the most dangerous and addictive, whereas Schedule VI generally includes non-addictive narcotics with some medical applications. The higher the schedule of a substance, the more severe the charges and accompanying penalties may be. A drug lawyer in McLean could play a crucial part in helping an accused individual understand the narcotics classification scheme and how its schedule may affect criminal charges.
The least severe drug offenses typically involve possession of small amounts of substances. Harsher charges and penalties may apply to manufacturing, trafficking, distributing, conspiring to commit a drug crime, or possessing with intent to distribute. In some cases, these charges involve more substantial quantities of the drug involved.
Under Virginia Code §18.2-250, someone may not intentionally possess controlled substances unless they have a legitimate prescription from an authorized medical provider. The schedule and the amount of drugs involved in a possession offense determine whether the charge is a misdemeanor or felony.
As a result, possession of a Schedule I or II drug may result in a Class 5 felony charge, but possession of a Schedule III substance may lead to a Class 1 misdemeanor offense. One exception to these general rules is marijuana. While federal law designates marijuana as a Schedule I controlled substance, some states treat this drug differently and impose less severe punishments.
VA. Code § 18.2-248 outlaws the manufacturing, sale, gifting, and distribution of controlled substances, as well as possession with intent to take any of these actions. As with possession offenses, the amount of the drug, the schedule of the controlled substance, and prior criminal history may affect the charges and penalties for these offenses. Therefore, more significant amounts of drugs belonging to more serious schedules may result in harsher punishments.
Generally, manufacturing or selling a Schedule I or Schedule II drug is a felony offense with a wide range of potential prison time from five to 40 years, plus fines up to $500,000. For some controlled substances deemed to be the most dangerous, such as heroin or cocaine, specific amounts of the drugs may result in more severe penalties, including mandatory minimum prison sentences. Given the gravity of these charges, a narcotics attorney in McLean may be instrumental in building a strong and effective defense to these allegations.
It is highly advisable to explore all of your legal options thoroughly before making essential choices in your case. With the help of a McLean drug lawyer, you could be a better position to make decisions regarding your case.
Any drug charges must be taken seriously due to the harsh penalties that a conviction can carry. Hiring experienced legal counsel could be essential to your defense. To get started on your case, schedule a consultation today.
Do not send us confidential information related to you or your company until you speak with one of our attorneys and get authorization to send that information to us.