If you have been arrested for drug possession, chances are that your charge will be listed as CDS marijuana, or not marijuana. The maximum punishment for possession of marijuana is six months for over 2.5 ounces and a civil citation of $100 for less than 1.5 ounces and $200 for less than 2.5 ounces but more than 1.5 ounces. This is much less that the maximum punishment for possession of CDS not marijuana, which is currently a year in jail for a first offense, 18 months for a second or third offense and 2 years for a fourth or subsequent. Possession not marijuana typically includes drugs such as cocaine, heroin, meth, and ecstasy. It is not uncommon in certain jurisdictions for a first time offender to be placed on reporting probation or even serve jail time for hard drug crimes. If you have been charged it is important to contact a criminal lawyer immediately to begin working on your defense.
In a possession case, the amount of the drugs found by police is not relevant to proving a drug crime. You can be charged with possession for having a minimal amount of actual drugs. Our drug lawyers have seen drug charges prosecuted for residue amounts of drugs such as heroin, cocaine, and marijuana. A controlled dangerous substance lawyer may be able to negotiate with the state prosecutor to have your drug possession case dismissed, or dropped down to a possession of paraphernalia charge if there is a residue amount of drugs involved, but this is highly dependent on where the arrest occurred in the state. All counties treat these cases differently, and it is important to retain a lawyer who knows the differences between these counties.
CDS includes any drug listed in schedule I through schedule V, and also includes other drugs or chemicals that are used to manufacture any listed drugs. Therefore a person can actually be arrested for a drug crime even if they are not found in possession of an actual drug. This type of arrest typically occurs in situations where there is unlawful drug manufacturing that requires chemical substances that are not classified as actual drugs. If you or someone you know is being investigated or has been arrested for drugs, contact The Herbst Firm 24 hours a day at 410-207-2598.