New York Marijuana Possession
While marijuana goes by numerous names on the street, the fact is that possessing this drug carries a wide range of punishments and consequence should you be convicted of breaking the law.
Out of all the drugs that people use for recreational purposes, marijuana is perhaps the most common. It's one of the few drugs that is used by people in every age group, from teenagers to elderly people. Currently, there is quite a lot of controversy surrounding marijuana and whether it should be legalized. Many people claim that smoking pot isn't nearly as bad for the body as smoking cigarettes or drinking alcohol, and proponents of marijuana also tout the fact that the plant has numerous other benefits such as making fabric, paper and other useful products. There is also sufficient data that shows that marijuana is helpful in treating people suffering from cancer, glaucoma and other diseases.
However, the way the law currently stands, possession and selling of marijuana is illegal and can land a person in serious trouble if they're caught. The punishments can be even harsher if prosecutors add the charge of possession with the intent to sell.
A person is considered guilty of possession with the intent to sell if they sell, deliver or knowingly possess marijuana with the intent to distribute. While quantity usually doesn't matter, it's fairly rare for a person carrying less than a half an ounce to be charged with intent to distribute, but in the overzealous world of drug prosecution, it's not unheard of.
However, possessing a large amount of marijuana, or any other controlled substance, may get you charged with intent to sell whether you did so or not. In the case of the State v. Morgan, the defendant did not make any statements indicating that they were intending to sell or deliver marijuana, however, since the accused has such a large quantity of the drug, the prosecution charged intent to sell and the accused was found guilty based solely on the amount. The logic was that a reasonable person would not be able to consume the amount in possession, so that must mean he intended to distribute.
While simple possession is still the most charged marijuana crime, it should be noted that punishments can be particularly harsh depending on how much marijuana a person has, whether they were caught near a school or park, and whether they have any prior convictions. If you've been charged with possession of marijuana, regardless of how little you had, you should seek out the help of an experienced New York Marijuana Possession Lawyer immediately. At Stephen Bilkis & Associates, PLLC, our lawyers are well-versed in the drug laws at both the state and federal level and will aggressively fight to defend their clients in either state or federal courts. One area our New York Drug Crime lawyers will investigate thoroughly is whether the client's Fourth Amendment rights were violated. The Fourth Amendment of the Constitution guarantees Americans protection from unlawful searches and seizures. In many cases, police overstep their boundaries and obtain evidence without going through the proper channels. In these instances, our Criminal lawyers will fight to have that evidence thrown out of court and get the charges dropped. In other cases, our legal team will work with prosecuting attorneys in attempts to have the charges and/or penalties reduced.
While marijuana may seem like a harmless drug, the penalties for possessing it can range from a slap on the wrist to serious prison time and heavy fines. In addition, the prosecuting attorney will decide whether the charge is to be a misdemeanor or a felony charge based on a number of factors, mostly, the amount of marijuana in the person's possession and whether any weapons are involved.
If you or a loved on has been charged with possession of marijuana or any other controlled substances, it's important that you get experienced legal help as soon as you can.
Please call Stephen Bilkis & Associates, PLLC at 800.696.9529 or contact one of our New York City offices serving Manhattan, Staten Island, Queens, the Bronx or Brooklyn, or in Westchester County or one of our Long Island offices in Nassau County or Suffolk County.