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South Plainfield Drug Possession Lawyer
Many people mistakenly believe that possession of a small amount of a drug like marijuana, cocaine or a prescription medication (e.g. Xanax, Vicodin, Adderall, etc.) in South Plainfield is nothing to worry about but this could not be further from the truth. It is illegal to possess any controlled dangerous substance (“CDS”) without a valid prescription and not just hard street drugs like heroin, MDMA (a.k.a. Molly or Ecstasy), LSD or methamphetamine. In most cases, the resulting conviction for possession of CDS is a felony that can result in years in state prison. There are also collateral consequences that can come with being convicted for possessing drugs including a suspension of your driver’s license, deportation if you are not a citizen, losing financial aid or your professional license being revoked. These are all good reasons to take the time to contact a qualified criminal lawyer as soon as possible.
Heroin Possession Attorneys in South Plainfield New Jersey
Here at the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, our team of accomplished defense attorneys possess exactly what you need. Our staff includes not only a former prosecutors in South Plainfield but also the ex-supervision of the Gangs, Guns & Drugs Task Force of the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office. The team of seasoned lawyers has over a century of combined experience to ensure your protection. For an immediate free consultation with an attorney on our staff, contact our New Brunswick Office at 732-246-7126. A lawyer with the tools to provide insightful guidance is available 24/7.
Drug Possession Offense in South Plainfield New Jersey
The unlawful possession of any form of CDS violates N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10. In accordance with this law, possession of a Schedule I, II, III, or IV drug, such as methamphetamine, LSD, cocaine, heroin, MDMA, Ecstasy, Molly or amphetamines is a third degree crime. Possession of any amount of a Schedule V drug, including prescription cough syrup, diet pills, and anti-diarrhea medications is a fourth degree crime. It is also a fourth degree crime to possess more than 50 grams of marijuana or greater than 4 dosage units of a prescription legend drug like Xanax, Hydrocodone, Oxycodone or Suboxone. Possession of 50 grams or less of marijuana or 4 or fewer dosage units of a prescription drug is a disorderly persons offense that is heard in South Plainfield Municipal Court.
An individual can be convicted of a South Brunswick drug possession offense if they knowingly possess CDS either actually or constructively. Actual possession means that the drugs were found on your person––in your hand, your pocket, your bag, etc. Constructive possession means that although the drugs were not found on your person, they were found in a location where you exercised dominion and control over them. For example, in the glove compartment or under the seat of your car, in your home, or in a storage locker that you rent. If you didn’t know you were in possession of the drug, didn’t know its illicit nature, or didn’t exercise dominion and control over the drugs, you may have a very valid defense to your possession charge.
The penalties for possession of CDS/drugs vary depending on the grade of offense. The headings below outline the standard penalties for each category:
- If convicted of a third-degree crime for drug possession, you can be sentenced to 3-5 years in prison and/or a fine up to $35,000.
- If convicted of a fourth-degree crime for drug possession, you can be sentenced to up to 18 months in prison and/or a fine up to $15,000.
- Possession of more than 50 grams of marijuana, or 5 grams of hashish is a fourth-degree crime, punishable by up to 18 months of in jail and/or a fine of up to $25,000.
- Possession of less than 50 grams of marijuana, or 5 grams of hashish is a disorderly persons offense, punishable by up to 6 months in jail and/or a fine of up to $1,000.
New Jersey law also provides for the enhancement of these penalties in situations involving the possession of drugs in the proximity of a public school, public park, public housing project, or public building. These enhancements can significantly increase the severity of the penalties one faces if convicted of drug possession in New Jersey.
Even if none of these defenses are applicable to your case, there may still be a chance to get the charges dismissed through a pretrial motion to suppress the evidence. This means that if we can prove that law enforcement violated your rights during your arrest or search and seizure, we can petition the judge to throw out any evidence obtained so that the jury does not hear about it. This may subsequently lead to an acquittal or the dismissal of your case. You may also have the opportunity to secure admission into a diversion program like Conditional Dismissal or Pretrial Intervention to avoid prosecution on your CDS charge.
South Plainfield NJ CDS Possession Defense Attorney
At The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, our lawyers have a strong track record of representing clients faced with drug charges and ultimately getting the charges reduced or dismissed. If you are facing a drug possession charge in South Plainfield, contact a defense attorney at our firm for the knowledgeable assistance you need. Attorneys on our staff, including our several former former prosecutors, are available around the clock for free consultations. Call (732) 227 – 1200 to speak with one of our drug possession defense attorneys. Contact us for a no-cost, no-obligation initial consultation with a lawyer at the firm.