Understanding Your Drug Possession Or Sale Charge

Get Help From New York Drug Defense Attorney Jason Steinberger

New York has some of the toughest drug laws in the country, and the consequences of drug possession or sale can include heavy fines, probation, long prison sentences, mandatory programming, and a permanent mark on your record. One of the first things that you should do if you have been arrested and are facing drug-related charges is to learn about the narcotics laws in your state, and speak to a seasoned New York City drug defense attorney about your case.

At the Law Offices of Jason A. Steinberger, we know your rights and we care about getting you the best possible outcome for the circumstances of our case and the extent of your charges. To schedule a meeting today, please call our team at (718) 585-2833.

What Is A Controlled Substance? What Is An Illegal Drug?

In New York, drug charges are split into two categories: Marijuana-related offenses and controlled substance-related offenses. A controlled substance, under the law, is defined as a drug that’s manufacture, possession, or use is regulated by the government. Some examples of controlled substances include:

  • Heroin
  • Cocaine (and other stimulates)
  • Methamphetamine
  • Ecstasy
  • Concentrated cannabis
  • PCP
  • Methadone (if possessed illegally)
  • Ketamine
  • Acid or LSD (and other hallucinogens)
  • Prescription drugs (that you do not have a prescription for)

This is far from an exhaustive list of controlled substances. For a complete list, visit the U.S. Justice Department.

Possession Of A Controlled Substance

If you are caught with an illegal controlled substance on your person, you can be charged with drug possession. However, it is vital to understand that you may also be charged with drug possession in New York if an illegal drug is found in a car or a room where you reside. In addition, if a drug is found in your home or car – even if you are not present – the prosecution can prove that you had control over the area and were in possession of the drugs.

To be convicted of drug possession in New York, the court must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that:

  • The substance was a controlled substance and that the person in possession did not have a legal prescription.
  • The defendant possessed the substance as outlined under the law.
  • The defendant knew about the possession.
  • The possession was unlawful.

Sale Of A Controlled Substance

There are five different degrees of charges for selling drugs, which range from Class A Felonies to Class E Felonies. The consequences of being convicted of the sale of illegal drugs is dependent on a number of factors including:

  • The type of controlled substance that was sold.
  • The amount of controlled substance that was sold.
  • The location of the sale of the drug (selling drugs at schools, daycare centers, or educational facilities are more serious offenses).
  • The number of times the defendant has been convicted of drug charges.

All of these felonies, however, can result in years in prison and tens of thousands of dollars in fines.

Other Charges Related To Illegal Drug Use, Possession, Or Sale

In addition to the possession and sale of drugs, you may be facing related charges. These could include:

  • Criminally possessing a hypodermic instrument. This is a Class A Misdemeanor in which a person knowingly and unlawfully possesses or sells a needle or syringe.
  • Criminal injection of a narcotic drug. This is a Class E Felony in which a person injects a narcotic into their system via a syringe or needle.
  • Use of a child to commit a controlled substance offense. This is a Class E Felony that takes place if a person uses a person under 16 years of age to assist in a drug sale or other drug offense.
  • Criminal possession of precursors of controlled substances. This is a Class E Felony in which a person is in possession of a substance used to make controlled substances.
  • Criminal sale of a controlled substance to a child. This is a Class B Felony in which a person over the age of 21 knowingly sells a controlled substance to a person under the age of 17.

Get Legal Help From An Experienced, Passionate New York Drug Defense Attorney

Drug crimes may not be violent crimes, but they can come with extremely serious consequences, especially if it is a repeat offense. Having a New York criminal defense attorney on your side can make certain that you receive fair consideration and secure the best possible outcome. To speak with a Bronx narcotics defense attorney today, please call Jason A. Steinberger today at (718) 585-2833 or contact us online.