Being charged with a drug offense is a big deal in Virginia. Even an offense that feels relatively minor–such as possession of a controlled substance for personal use–could have serious consequences that impact your life for years to come. At the Law Office of Steven D. Barnette, P.C., our drug crimes attorney is here to support you and provide aggressive representation throughout the criminal defense process. Call us today for the support you need.
Drug Offenses in Virginia
There are three primary types of drug crimes in Virginia:
- Possession of a controlled substance. This offense occurs when a person has in their possession or under their control a controlled substance without an authorized prescription.
- Sale or distribution of a controlled substance. If you sell, give away, deliver, or otherwise distribute a controlled substance, you can face criminal penalties.
- Manufacture of a controlled substance. Manufacture of controlled substances refers to the production of a controlled substance without legal authorization. In Virginia, possessing the ingredients/chemicals for manufacture and having the intent to manufacturer–even if you don’t actually do it–is a crime.
Penalties for Drug Offenses in Virginia
The penalties that a person may face if convicted of a drug offense in our state vary on a case-by-case basis depending on the type of crime (possession, distribution, or manufacture), the type and schedule of drug (Schedules I-VI), the amount of drug involved, and certain other circumstances (i.e.whether the drug was distributed to a minor or distributed near school grounds, for example). A drug crime could be classified as a misdemeanor or a felony. Penalties might range from potential confinement for up to one year and a fine of up to $2,500 to imprisonment for up to four decades or even life imprisonment and a fine of up to $500,000. Because the penalties for drug crimes are so severe, working with a skilled drug and criminal defense attorney is critical, and is your legal right.
Virginia Marijuana Laws
There are special rules for marijuana possession, distribution, and manufacturer in Virginia. Under the law, the possession of up to one ounce of marijuana is a civil offense and does not pose the risk of any jail time; the maximum fine is $25. The sale, manufacturer, and trafficking of marijuana are more harshly penalized, though, and transporting more than five pounds into the state or manufacturing marijuana carries a mandatory minimum five-year sentence. If you are facing drug charges for a marijuana-related offense, it’s in your best interests to hire an attorney who has experience working on marijuana-involved drug cases, as the law has evolved and you want someone on your side who is well-versed in the current law.
How Our Law Firm Can Help
When you choose the Law Office of Steven D. Barnette, P.C. for representation during your case, you can count on us to review the prosecution’s evidence against you in detail, help you to defend yourself against charges or enter a plea bargain with the prosecution, ensure that all of your Constitutional rights are upheld and any illegally obtained evidence is withheld, and to advocate for you every step of the way.
Being charged with a drug crime is a big deal. If you are convicted, you may face time in prison, be responsible for paying a large fine, and suffer a mark on your criminal record that hinders future opportunities. To learn more about your rights and what to do to protect your interests when facing drug charges, call our law firm today or reach out online. We are here to fight for you.