Drug Offense and Possession Lawyer
If you’ve been charged with any type of drug offense, or possession, it is absolutely vital that you hire counsel immediately. An experienced drug offense attorney can mean the difference between being charged with a felony, paying huge fines and spending years in prison, or incurring a minor charge and possibly keeping a conviction off your record.
Any type of drug conviction can hold serious consequences and negatively impact your life for years to come. Some penalties in Pennsylvania can include expulsion from school (for students), loss of employment, driver’s license suspension, inability to secure student loans, being banned from owning a firearm, prison time, fines, loss of child custody, and more.
Some of the more serious consequences include:
- For a first offense of drug possession: This is considered a misdemeanor that carries up to one year in jail, and a fine of up to $5000.
- Second offense (and further offenses): This is a misdemeanor that carries up to three years imprisonment and a fine of up to $25,000.
- Possession of small amounts of Marijuana (less than 30 grams for personal use): A misdemeanor that carries up to 30 days in jail, a fine of up to $500, automatic license suspension for a minimum of six months, and a criminal record.
- Possession of large amounts of Marijuana (more than 30 grams): A misdemeanor on your permanent criminal record, up to one year imprisonment, and a $5000 fine. If this is not your first offense or you have other criminal charges pending, sentencing and penalties can be doubled.
- Possession of drug paraphernalia: This is a misdemeanor that carries up to one year imprisonment, and a fine of up to $2,500.
Drug Offenses (PWID/Drug Trafficking):
Other types of convictions including manufacturing, delivering or Possession With Intent to Deliver Controlled Substances (PWID) (drug trafficking) can carry harsher penalties. Dealing, growing, transporting, producing, and fraudulently obtaining drugs is considered a felony and in addition to state charges you can be charged with a federal crime as well. Depending on the type of drug (marijuana, cocaine, heroin, ecstasy, PCP, amphetamines, meth or MDMA) and the weight, penalties are different.
A person can spend anywhere from two to seven years in prison and be fined anywhere from $5000 to $50,000. In addition, if you are found guilty of PWID your personal property is subject to forfeiture - the government can seize any property they think was used for drug trafficking or received as a result of drug trafficking.
If you’ve been charged with a drug offense, or possession, call the law offices of Timothy J. Prendergast now. Drug charges carry serious consequences and an experienced drug charges attorney will make all the difference in your case. You need a lawyer who knows how to navigate the criminal justice system and who has the experience to build the best case for your defense.