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South River NJ Cocaine Possession Attorney
Possession of Cocaine in South River Borough
Former Middlesex County Prosecutors Who Know How To Effectively Defend Your Cocaine Offense
A Middlesex County councilman was arrested in the summer of 2017 for an assortment of charges that included possession of cocaine in South River. This example illustrates just how common cocaine possession has become with a public official even being charged for this offense. Irrespective of how your South River New Jersey cocaine charge came to be filed, selecting a knowledgeable defense attorney to defend you is crucial. This is precisely how the attorneys at our firm can serve you so formidably.
We are the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, a Middlesex County criminal defense firm comprised of eight lawyers, most of whom are former prosecutors. In fact, one lawyer on our staff served as prosecutor in South River and another as the supervisor of the Drug Task Force at the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office. Call us at 732-227-1200 to reach our East Brunswick Office and an attorney that can assist you.
Cocaine Possession in South River New Jersey
The law that applies to possession of controlled dangerous substances (“CDS”), including cocaine, is N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10. This statute provides that:
It is unlawful for any person, knowingly or purposely, to obtain, or to possess, actually or constructively, a controlled dangerous substance or controlled substance analog, unless the substance was obtained directly, or pursuant to a valid prescription or order form from a practitioner, while acting in the course of his professional practice[.]
Actual and Constructive Possession Can Trigger a Violation. You will note that this law applies to both “actual” and “constructive” possession of cocaine. To clarify, actual possession is when you have drugs/CDS on your person. Constructive possession is when drugs are not actually on your person, but still in your possession because you know where they are and have the ability and intention to exercise control in the future. For example, in the case above the councilman did not have the drugs on his person, but they were in his car. He was deemed in constructive possession because he knew the CDS was in the car and intended to partake in them.
Possession of Cocaine is a Crime of the Third Degree. Possession of cocaine is charged as a third degree crime under 2C:35-10a(1). A South River drug possession offense of this grade can only be dealt with at the Middlesex County Superior Court in New Brunswick. The penalties that apply at the time of sentencing for third degree cocaine possession include:
- Up to 3 to 5 years in prison
- Fine of up to $35,000
- Driver’s license suspension of 6-24 months
Possession of Cocaine in a School Zone. If you are convicted of possession of cocaine within 1000 feet of a school or school bus, and you have not been sentenced to a period of imprisonment, the court must order you to serve a mandatory 100 hours of community service.
Distribution of Cocaine in South River. The penalties are significantly more severe if you are convicted of distribution, selling or possession with intent to distribute cocaine. For more information on this subject, you can refer to our South River CDS Distribution page.
Potential Defenses to a Possession of Cocaine Charge. Our attorneys have had extensive experience defending clients on possession charges. We will be able to quickly assess what defenses may be viable for you based on the facts of your case. Some possible defenses are:
• The police were not justified in stopping you initially;
• A car search was not justified based on the officer’s level of suspicion;
• The police did not inform you of your right to refuse at the time he or she asked for consent to search you or your car;
• There was no probable cause to arrest you.
South River Possession of Cocaine Lawyer
There is still a “war on drugs” in New Jersey and cocaine is definitely a CDS that is a target of the South River Police Department and other law enforcement in the area. If you have been charged with cocaine possession or even distribution of the drug, do not make the mistake that you are facing a South River marijuana charge — this is a felony criminal offense that can land you in prison in years. Hiring a lawyer who has the skill to thoroughly protect you against a conviction is your best weapon for escaping the penalties for cocaine possession in South River. We can offer you this level of representation with a team of attorneys that have over 100 years of combine experience defending cocaine and other drug charges at the county courthouse in New Brunswick. An astute criminal attorney at the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall is prepared to start the work on your case. Call us at 732-227-1200 to speak to one of the lawyers at the firm without obligation.