If an individual is caught with drugs in their possession, then they may be charged with a misdemeanor or felony, depending on the type of drug. The more dangerous and harmful a drug is, then the stricter the penalties will be. If you are currently facing charges of a drug-related crime, it is very important that you contact a San Jose criminal lawyer from Edward Ajlouny, Attorney at Law for effective legal defense strategies.
When could I get charged with drug possession?
Under the law, possession is also defined as the control of an object or substance. There are three types of possession that could lead to charges: actual, constructive, and joint. Actual possession is the simplest and most easily identifiable type. This is when an individual physically has the substance on his or her person or personal property.
Constructive possession is defined as access or the right to handle a controlled substance. Usually there is only circumstantial evidence that infers guilt, such as drugs were found in an individual’s home or car. Joint possession occurs when two or more people have control over a drug. This can happen when a drug is found in a shared bedroom or a space that both individuals had access and control over.
What are the penalties for drug possession?
The California Health and Safety Code Section 11053-11058 details the illegal substances and the penalties of their possession, which vary depending on the drug. According to the Controlled Substance Act, all drugs are classified into 5 different groups, called schedules, and each has their own consequences for illegal possession. Schedule I includes drugs that have a high potential for abuse, have no known medical use or treatment, and have safety risks. This includes such drugs as heroin, marijuana, LSD, and MDMA.
Schedule II drugs also have a high potential for abuse, have medical uses, and can lead to severe psychological or physical dependence. These include drugs like cocaine, amphetamines, OxyContin, and morphine. Schedule III drugs have less potential for abuse, accepted medical uses, moderate to low physical dependence and high psychological dependence. These drugs, like Vicodin, Ketamine, and steroids, must be prescribed by a medical practitioner in order to be legal.
Schedule IV and V drugs have a low potential for abuse and dependence, have medical uses, and have limited physical and psychological dependence. Schedule IV drugs include Xanax, Valium, and Soma. Schedule V have an even lower potential for abuse than IV and contain limited narcotics. Besides marijuana, possession of most drugs in California is considered a felony, making it vital that you contact a San Jose drug possession lawyer from my firm for aggressive representation.
Are there any alternatives to imprisonment?
In California, drug offenders could be eligible for rehabilitation programs, contingent on their criminal record and the skill of their legal team. One alternative is drug court, which is a one year program that involves its participants in counseling, judicial reviews, and random drug testing. This was first enacted in Miami-Dade County, Florida in 1989 to help reduce the demand for drugs rather than to continue trying to reduce the supply. The logic was if you treat offenders, rather than simply giving them punishment, then they are less likely to return for another offense.
Another option is Proposition 36, which is one year of drug treatment as an inpatient, outpatient, or at a halfway house. The level of treatment is determined by an official from the Department of Health. The last alternative is deferred entry of judgment, which is a diversion program. The offending party pleads guilty to their charges, and then goes through 6 months of treatment in a program. After that, they are an outpatient for 12 months and if they successfully remain arrest-free for that time period, then the case is dismissed.
Contact a Sam Jose Drug Possession Defense Attorney from my Firm!
If you have been charged with drug possession, then you could be facing serious charges of imprisonment, fines, license revocation, and more. It is important that you contact Edward N. Ajlouny, Attorney at Law for wise legal counsel and a strong defense against prosecution. My experience as a former D.A. gives me special insight into the prosecution’s strategies as well as extensive knowledge of their policies and standards.
I give all of my clients’ personal attention so they can receive the best outcome possible, no matter how complex or difficult a case may be. Call my firm today to get the defense you deserve! We offer a free case evaluation for those are interested in finding out more!