Los Angeles Drug Crimes Attorney
The War on Drugs continues even though more states are legalizing cannabis. The punishments for drug crimes are among the most severe in the legal system. You need a drug defense attorney that is aware of the numerous classes and rehabilitation courses available in lieu of jail or prison time.
Because Attorney Shaheen Manshoory and his associates have extensive knowledge of every possible program and class available, we provide mitigation packages and present those options to the judge, so that they may grant treatment instead of putting you in prison.
If the police have evidence that you had an illegal substance, it’s difficult to fight that physical evidence. Without the protection of a Los Angeles drug lawyer, you risk significant jail or prison time, and possibly heavy fines, depending on your exact situation.
If you are charged with a drug crime, you must get a lawyer!
Drug Laws And Penalties in California
Under California drug sentencing guidelines, most instances of simple drug possession for personal use are charged as misdemeanors rather than felonies. These crimes are punishable by imprisonment in county jail for up to a year and a fine of up to $1,000.
You can also be put on parole, which means you will be subject to random drug testing, and the police can search you at any time without a warrant and without cause.
In some circumstances, possession of drugs can be prosecuted as a felony, such as if you have a prior conviction for a serious felony. A felony conviction is punishable by up to three years in county jail.
In some cases, you may qualify for a drug treatment program or drug court, allowing you to serve your sentence in a drug treatment program instead of jail.
An experienced Los Angeles drug crimes defense attorney can help you get the best outcome if you are facing drug possession charges in California.
- Under 28.5 grams of Marijuana (Infraction) – HS 11357(b)
If you are under the age of 18 and it is your first offense, you will be required to complete 4 hours of drug education or counseling and serve up to 10 hours of community service over a period of up to 2 months.
For subsequent offenses, you will have to complete six hours of drug education or counseling and up to 20 hours of community service over up to 3 months.
If you are between 18 and 21, you may have to pay a fine of up to $100.
- Over 28.5 grams of Marijuana (Misdemeanor) – HS 11357(c)
If you are under the age of 18 and it is your first offense, you will have to attend 8 hours of drug education or counseling and up to 40 hours of community service over up to 3 months. Subsequent offenses will require 10 hours of drug education and up to 60 hours of community service over up to 4 months.
If you are over the age of 18, you can be punished with up to 6 months in county jail and a fine of up to $500.
- Concentrated Cannabis (Misdemeanor or Felony) – HS 11357(a)
If you possess more than 8 grams of concentrated cannabis products and you are over the age of 18, this is treated the same as possessing more than 28.5 grams of marijuana.
If you are under the age of 18 and you possess more than 4 grams of concentrated cannabis, this is also treated the same as possessing more than 28.5 grams of cannabis.
Cocaine | HS 11350
Possession of cocaine for personal use is punishable by up to a year in jail. If you are a first-time offender, you can usually get a drug diversion and avoid spending time in jail. While cocaine is a Schedule II controlled substance, cocaine base (crack) is a Schedule I controlled substance.
Therefore, possession of cocaine base is more likely to result in a felony conviction than possession of cocaine.
Felony Possession of Cocaine with a Loaded Firearm – HS 11370.1
If you possess any amount of cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, or phencyclidine, while also armed with a loaded, working firearm, you can be punished by 2 to 4 years in state prison.
Heroin | HS 11350
Possession of heroin for personal use is punishable by up to a year in jail. If you are a first-time offender, you can usually get a drug diversion and avoid spending time in jail.
“Meth” | HS 11377
Possession of methamphetamine for personal use is punishable by up to a year in jail and a fine of up to $70. If you are a first-time offender, you can usually get a drug diversion and avoid spending time in jail.
Prescription Drugs Without Prescription | BPC 4064
Possession of prescription drugs without prescription for personal use is punishable by up to a year in jail. If you are a first-time offender, you can usually get a drug diversion and avoid spending time in jail.
However, according to Business and Professions Code 4064, pharmacists may legally refill a prescription without authorization from the relevant medical provider. If they reasonably believe that failing to refill the prescription would interrupt ongoing care or adversely affect your health, this may help your defense, although it does not make you exempt from punishment for possessing the drug without a prescription.
Transportation or Selling of Controlled Substances
Under California Health & Safety Code 11352, it is a crime to transport, import, furnish, administer, or give away a drug, or offer to do any of the above if the underlying intent is to sell a controlled substance.
This law punishes people involved in moving drugs from place to place by foot or vehicle, importing drugs from another state or country, selling drugs, supplying drugs that will be sold, administering drugs to someone, or giving away samples of a drug. Even small-scale actions, such as giving a friend a few of your prescription pills to sell, may lead to felony prosecution.
Penalties for Selling or Transporting Drugs
Selling or transporting drugs in California can be punished by 3 to 9 years. Your sentencing will be more severe if you travelled to a county that is not next to the county you started your journey in.
Defending a Drug Sales or Transportation Charge
To convict you of selling or transporting drugs, a prosecutor must prove not just that you transported or sold the drug, but that you knew it was a controlled substance, you intended to sell it, and there was enough of it to be used as a drug.
As a result, common defenses include:
- You did not know the substance was an illegal drug
- You did not know the substance was in your possession
- You were not carrying enough of the substance to be used as a drug
- You had a valid prescription for the drug
- Evidence was obtained against you in an illegal search and seizure
What is Drug Manufacturing?
You can be charged with drug manufacturing if you are involved with any stage of producing a drug, even just supplying a legal substance to be used by someone else in drug production.
Intent to Manufacture
To convict you of drug manufacturing, the prosecution must prove that you intended to manufacture drugs, and will often refer to the ingredients and equipment in your possession to do so. You may be able to demonstrate that you possess these items for other, legal purposes.
Drug manufacturing can be punished with 3 to 7 years in prison and a fine of up to $50,000.
What are the Defenses Against Drug Crimes?
There are some common ways to defend against drug crimes. The first is a medical necessity (assuming the drug marijuana or you have a prescription). If you have opiates and have a prescription from a doctor or can otherwise prove medical necessity, the rules for possession change.
Likewise, if the evidence for drug crimes was obtained via an illegal search, that evidence can be thrown out. There have been cases of the police using entrapment techniques or even planting drugs at crime scenes to get a conviction. Also, lab procedures used for detecting drug residues can be flawed or done improperly.
Contact a Los Angeles Drug Crime Lawyer
What we can do for you – 3 things to keep in mind:
- Your best shot at getting your drug case dismissed is to challenge the search or seizure of the drugs. This is done through a formal suppression motion to deny the admissibility of any “evidence” found in violation of your Fourth Amendment Rights.
- The Fourth Amendment governs every contact police have with a citizen. It protects citizens against unlawful search and seizure. Having a Los Angeles drug crimes attorney that is knowledgeable of and understands all the rights the Fourth Amendment gives you, and all the limitations it places on the police is crucial in successfully defending against improper search and or seizure of “evidence.”
- Also, having an attorney that knows the prosecution, judges, and officers is as important as knowing the law. Ideally, you want to choose a drug attorney that has practiced in front of those people that will make serious decisions on your case. Familiarity with the court and the people will undoubtedly put you in a much more favorable situation. That’s why we believe you should work with Manshoory Law Group. We have knowledge of the law and the courts system to mount a strong defense on your behalf.
If you or a loved one is facing a drug charge, contact us immediately for a free case evaluation. The sooner we can get access to your case file, the stronger our chances of getting you a favorable result.