Gilbert Drug Lawyer

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Drug offenses are some of the more common criminal offenses seen in Arizona. Depending on the type of drug, individuals could be charged with either a misdemeanor or a felony. However, no matter the severity of the offense, someone facing this type of penalty will want to avoid the serious repercussions that come with a conviction.

If you have been arrested on drug charges, it is vital to seek the counsel of a Gilbert drug lawyer at Grand Canyon Law Group to discuss possible defenses for your case. Our experienced attorneys will vigorously defend your rights and fight to ensure your ultimate freedom.

A conviction for any drug offense can change your life and hurt your future prospects. You could face steep monetary fines in addition to the threat of incarceration. Understanding the types of drug charges in Gilbert is crucial to building a defense tailored to the specific allegations.

DEFENDING A GILBERT DRUG CHARGE

Depending on the details of the charge, a multitude of defenses may potentially be used against allegations of a drug violation. The circumstances surrounding the discovery of the drugs can sometimes be used in a defense. If the drugs were found as the result of an unlawful search, it may be possible to prevent the illegally discovered evidence from being used against you in court.

Additionally, whether the accused was aware of the presence of the drug is a critical element that can favor the defense. In order to convict a person of illegal drug possession, the State must prove that you deliberately and with full awareness had possession or control over the drug.

In other words, if the illegal substance was discovered in a nearby area but the accused was not aware of the substance, this could potentially be used as a defense against their charges. An attorney with significant knowledge of the local legal context surrounding a drug charge could formulate a robust defense according to the facts of your case.

COMMON DRUG CHARGES AND SENTENCES

Many different drug charges can be leveled against someone, and the penalties attached to each depends on a few factors. A drug attorney could provide insight as to a particular charge in the local area. In most cases, the type of drug involved and the amount of the substance in question are two primary elements that correlate to the sentence levied if the person is convicted. The court may assess lesser penalties for first-time offenses at their discretion.

POSSESSION OF A CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE

Arizona law outlines an extensive list of substances and the various penalties attached to specific quantities of each type of substance. Possession charges can carry lighter punishments than a conviction for the sale or manufacturing of an illegal substance. For instance, if you are convicted of possessing between two and four pounds of marijuana, you would face Class 5 felony punishments. In Arizona, a Class 5 felony carries a jail term of up to 30 months if aggravating factors are present. Without aggravating factors, the standard or presumptive sentence is 1.5 years in prison.

The most common drug-related offense involves possessing a controlled substance. This includes possessing unlawful narcotics but can also apply to possessing medication without a prescription. Possession charges can be misdemeanors or felonies, depending on the type and amount of the substance in question.

A more serious form of this charge is possession with intent to distribute. The basics of this offense are the same—a person is found in possession of a controlled substance. However, allegations that they possessed the drugs and intended to sell them can come with additional penalties.

The law presumes intent to sell in certain situations, such as if the person was found in possession of a substance over the threshold amount. An experienced Gilbert attorney can explain the amounts for different types of drugs and help build a defense against the charge.

DRUG MANUFACTURING CHARGES

Manufacturing or cultivating controlled substances is also against the law. The process for manufacturing drugs varies depending on the substance. For example, some drugs involve complex chemical reactions, while marijuana involves cultivating a plant.

The penalties associated with drug manufacturing depend on the drug in question. The penalties for these types of drug charges are higher than for standard possession, as our seasoned lawyers in Gilbert can explain.

DRUG TRAFFICKING CHARGES

Drug trafficking charges are serious criminal offenses. This offense involves more than simply possessing a controlled substance for personal use. Drug trafficking is a criminal charge for importing, transporting, or selling narcotics.

There are two elements to this offense, which state prosecutors must prove to secure a trafficking conviction. First, the state must show that a person transported for sale, sold, or imported narcotics in the state. Second, there must be evidence that they did so knowingly.

SALE

However, a conviction for the sale of the same quantity of marijuana is charged as a Class 3 felony offense, the period of incarceration for which can be 42 months without aggravating factors, and up to nearly nine years if aggravating factors are present. Significant financial penalties may also be imposed.

CANNABIS LAWS IN GILBERT

In recent years, Arizona legalized the possession of small amounts of marijuana for private use. There are still limitations in place, however. A person must be at least 21 to legally possess marijuana. Even then, the law limits a person to less than one ounce in their possession. They may also grow up to six plants for non-commercial purposes.

For those under 21, possessing small amounts of marijuana is a civil offense punishable by up to $100 in fines. Possessing larger amounts of marijuana could carry much steeper penalties. No matter what type of drug offense a person faces, representation from a skilled attorney at our firm is essential to securing a positive outcome.

SENTENCING FOR MORE ADDICTIVE SUBSTANCES

Consider the potential sentencing guidelines for a more addictive substance such as heroin or methamphetamine. If someone is charged with possession of either substance, but an aggravating factor is present, they could be ordered to spend nearly four years in prison, or 3.75 years to be exact.

PENALTIES FOR DRUG POSSESSION

The most common type of drug offense under state law is possession of a controlled substance. The type and amount of the substance will determine the specific maximum sentence. For example, possessing an amount of narcotics below the threshold amount could lead to a maximum term of 3.75 years in prison. That sentence is much higher for larger amounts.

These penalties only apply to charges for possession below the threshold amount. Anyone with large amounts of controlled substances in their possession could be accused of possession with intent to sell. As our Gilbert attorneys can explain, these elevated drug charges come with more severe penalties upon conviction.

UNDERSTANDING DRUG THRESHOLDS IN GILBERT

State law recognizes specific amounts of drugs—known as threshold levels—that allow prosecutors to presume an intent to sell. This is important, as possessing drugs with the intent to sell them carries far steeper penalties compared to possessing small amounts for personal use.

The threshold level for each drug is different; stronger or more concentrated drugs are regulated at lower volumes. For example, a gram of heroin carries much steeper penalties than other substances. The threshold amounts are as follows:

  • Heroin – 1 gram
  • Cocaine – 9 grams
  • PCP – 4 grams or 50 milliliters
  • Methamphetamine – 9 grams
  • Amphetamine – 9 grams
  • Marijuana – 2 pounds

The penalty for possession with intent to sell varies, but the maximum sentence is always greater than charges involving simple possession of a controlled substance. Like with any criminal offense, there are ways to fight back against allegations of possession with the intent to sell. Our skilled local attorneys could help develop a defense strategy against drug penalties for intent to sell.

DRUG PENALTIES FOR MINORS

The criminal justice system takes a different approach with minors than adult defendants in drug cases. In Arizona, the courts will not sentence minors to mandatory jail terms. While incarceration is one possible outcome, most cases are resolved through alternative means. Time in juvenile detention is especially uncommon for first-time offenders.

In some cases, the court might order a minor to attend drug counseling. Usually, any sentence that comes with these orders is suspended. If the minor completes mandated drug counseling and meets other necessary guidelines, they could avoid a conviction entirely. The Gilbert lawyers at Grand Canyon Law Group can help minors resolve drug charges and prevent criminal penalties.

The consequences of a drug conviction can be significant, including incarceration and steep monetary fines. When accused of drug-related offenses, you deserve dedicated legal representation to protect your rights, freedom, and future.

If you have been arrested and charged with a drug crime, a conviction could have profound implications for your future. The drug penalties in Gilbert are often steep, but only if you are convicted of a crime.

You have the right to defend yourself in court and fight back against criminal consequences. Grand Canyon Law Group has a long track record of success in these cases. Call our firm today to discuss your legal options during a consultation.

ASK A GILBERT DRUG ATTORNEY FOR LEGAL ASSISTANCE

If you are charged with an Arizona drug crime, one of the most important actions you can take to boost your defense is to hire a skilled Gilbert drug lawyer. One of our experienced attorneys at Grand Canyon Law Group can construct compelling legal arguments based on the specific details and circumstances of your charge while making every effort to achieve a favorable ruling. Call our office today to receive your free case consultation.

Drug charges can come with wide-ranging consequences. However, you will only face those consequences if you are convicted. With the right defense strategy, you could walk away without a conviction and protect your way of life.

Discuss the different types of drug charges in Gilbert with a lawyer who can tailor a defense strategy to the circumstances. At Grand Canyon Law Group, our former prosecutors are now dedicated defense attorneys who know how to fight for your rights.

Schedule A Consultation With The Grand Canyon Attorney Who Can Help