Springfield Drug Lawyer
If you have been charged with a drug offense, you are likely to have many questions about your situation. This especially may be the case with respect to the consequences that you might receive as a result of a conviction.
A Springfield drug lawyer could answer your questions and give you the information necessary to make decisions about your case.
A criminal defense attorney could investigate the facts and circumstances surrounding your charges and evaluate the evidence against you. This may enable you to develop the strongest defenses possible to the charges.
Springfield Drug Possession
Va. Code § 18.2-250 makes it illegal to knowingly possess a controlled substance. One exception to this law is for those who obtain a controlled substance pursuant to a valid prescription from a medical provider.
The other exception is for those who obtain a controlled substance by another means authorized by the Drug Control Act, which is the major federal law that governs controlled substances.
For the most part, Virginia law classifies drugs according to the same schedules set forth in the Drug Control Act. Schedule I controlled substances are generally those that have the highest risk of misuse and no accepted medicinal usage.
It is the schedule of a controlled substance that determines the level of the criminal offense charged, as well as the potential penalties for possession of that controlled substance.
Drug Possession Penalties
Drug penalties are serious and can lead to long-term ramifications. For instance, individuals who possess a Schedule I or Schedule II controlled substance may face Class 5 felony charges, which can result in a prison sentence ranging from one to 10 years, or less, in the discretion of a judge or jury, and a fine of up to $2,500.
As the penalties for possession of a controlled substance may be quite severe, getting advice from a drug lawyer in Springfield may be advisable when facing drug possession charges.
Although marijuana remains a Schedule I controlled substance under the Drug Control Act, possession of a cannabimimetic agent is an unclassified misdemeanor with a maximum penalty of 30 days in jail, unless the individuals accused of the possession are in the custody of a penal institution.
Likewise, Va. Code § 18.2-250.1 sets forth penalties for marijuana possession that differ substantially from those for possession of other Schedule 1 controlled substances. A first-time marijuana possession charge is a misdemeanor punishable by up to 30 days in jail and a $500 fine.
Laws Governing the Manufacture, Sale, and Distribution of Controlled Substances
Va. Code § 18.2-248 prohibits persons from manufacturing, selling, giving, or distributing controlled substances or imitation controlled substances. This same section also makes it illegal to possess controlled substances with the intent to take those same actions.
As is the case with possession of controlled substances, the charges and penalties for the manufacturing and sales of controlled substances vary according to the schedule in which a controlled substance is classified.
Manufacture or distribution of a Schedule I or Schedule II controlled substance can result in a prison sentence ranging from five to 40 years, along with a fine of up to $500,000. Second and subsequent convictions of this offense are likely to result in greater terms of imprisonment, including life in prison in some cases.
A Springfield drug lawyer may be able to help defend individuals against drug charges and avoid or minimize some of the potential penalties for a conviction on these offenses.
Furthermore, it is illegal pursuant to Va. Code § 18.2-255.2 for individuals to manufacture, sell, distribute, or possess with intent to distribute controlled substances or marijuana in various locations, including at schools, daycares, libraries, and other public places. Violation of this section is a separate felony offense with its own set of penalties.
Contact a Springfield Drug Attorney for Advice
A conviction for any type of drug-related offense can have severe consequences, including lengthy terms of incarceration and high fines. If the conviction is for a felony offense, you may encounter difficulties finding a job, meeting some professional licensing requirements, and even pursuing some careers.
A Springfield drug lawyer could be instrumental in helping you to avoid this type of negative outcome. By getting the legal representation that you need, you may be able to work toward a positive resolution of the charges against you. Having a strong legal advocate on your side throughout the proceedings may be the most beneficial path for you to follow in this situation.