Possession of Drugs for Sale
Properly defending a drug possession for sale charge requires the help of an experienced Phoenix criminal defense lawyer who understands the complexity of drug crimes. To increase your chance of getting the charges reduced or dismissed, or obtaining an alternative sentence, like diversion or TASC, your best option: hire a criminal defense lawyer with the a history of proven results.
The criminal defense attorneys with the Lerner and Rowe Law Group have successfully represented hundreds of clients charged with drug related offenses and are here to help.
What Are the Penalties for Possession of Drugs for Sale?
Drug possession for sale charges are generally charged as felonies in Arizona. A conviction can result in prison time and hefty financial penalties. The penalties for crimes involving drugs are dependent upon several factors:
- Specific drug involved;
- Amount of the drug; and,
- Conduct alleged in connection with the drug crime.
Additionally, any prior criminal history may impact the resolution of your case.
Charges for either Possession of Dangerous Drugs for Sale or Transportation of Dangerous drugs for sale are taken seriously by the state. Both of these charges are class 2 felonies, and for a first offense possessing less than the threshold amount can result in a prison sentence of three to twelve years in prison.
The defendant may also receive probation with a up to one year in the county jail. Having a historical felony conviction can significantly increase the amount of possible prison time. However, if the amount involved is greater than the threshold amount probation is not available.
If the drug involved is methamphetamine, a conviction will carry a hefty flat-term sentence of five, ten, or fifteen years.
Arizona Threshold Amounts
In Arizona, “threshold amounts” are determinative in drug sales cases. Arizona statute 13-3401 outlines the threshold amounts for each drug. If a person is caught possessing the minimum statutory threshold amount of a specific drug, or greater, they will be subject to mandatory prison sentence and not be eligible for probation and drug treatment.
Additionally, possessing a quantity of drugs greater than the threshold amount will result in a presumption that the drugs were being possessed for sale.
Below are the drug threshold amounts:
- Amphetamine and Methamphetamine: 9 grams or greater
- Cocaine: 9 grams powder, 750 mg rock
- Heroin: 1 gram
- LSD ½ ml liquid, 50 doses
- PCP – 4 grams or 50- ml
- Marijuana – 2 pounds
If convicted of drug possession for sale, manufacture, or transport; and if the amount of the drug involved is above the statutory threshold amount, a mandatory prison sentence will be imposed. The criminal defense lawyers with the Lerner and Rowe Law Group aggressively represent those charged with drug crimes.
Our criminal attorneys will vigilantly analyze all relevant information related to the arrest as well as the quality and integrity of the police investigation. A challenge to the admissibility of the evidence may, in some cases, result in a dismissal or a reduced charge.
Possible Defenses to a Drug Sales Charge
A possible defense in drug sales cases is to demonstrate that the defendant possessed the drugs for personal use as opposed to possessing them for sale. Although possessing a quantity of drugs greater than the threshold amount creates a presumption the drugs were for sale, a Phoenix criminal defense lawyer can present opposing evidence on your behalf to defeat that presumption.
Another possible defense is to show the defendant lacked knowledge about the presence of the drugs. A common example is being a passenger in a vehicle where drugs are located in the center console or glove compartment. Although under the law more than one person can constructively possess the same item, the state must demonstrate the accused had knowledge the drugs were in the vehicle.
Phoenix Criminal Defense Lawyer
Arizona drug laws are complicated. As such, it may be unwise to go without representation when charged with a drug crime. Hiring a Phoenix criminal defense lawyer can help put the law on your side. If charged with an Arizona drug sales offense, you should consult an experienced Phoenix Criminal Attorney. The best criminal lawyers know how to spot weaknesses in the state’s case; how to successfully prepare a defense to the charges; and also, how to navigate the judicial system to obtain a dismissal or reduced charges and/or penalties.
For a free consultation, you can contact the Lerner and Rowe Law Group by calling 602-667-7777 or by filling out the online case evaluation form. So, don’t wait! We look forward to speaking to you and answering your questions.