Arizona has strict penalties for anyone in possession of an illegal controlled substance. If you are charged with possession of a controlled substance, you might face high fines and jail time. But a conviction will not necessarily result in jail time or high penalties. You need an experienced attorney who can defend you. Contact Cliff Hill for a consultation and to learn more.
Charges for possession of a dangerous controlled substance are based on the classification of the drug (A.R.S. 13-3406 -13-3408). There are six types of controlled dangerous substances in Arizona. These are:
These include hallucinogens and stimulants like LSD and methamphetamine
It is illegal to be in possession of legal prescription drugs without the proper prescription. This includes having drugs that are expired, or having too large a quantity of prescription drugs at one time.
Medical marijuana is legal but controlled in Arizona. It is illegal to be in possession of marijuana without a medical card.
These include codeine, morphine, heroin, and oxycodone.
Drugs that Emit Toxic Vapors-
These include glue and aerosol.
This is a plant that naturally creates mescaline which is used recreationally. The drug is also used for religious purposes, and comes with certain rights for religious use.
To be charged for possession of a controlled substance the defendant must
- Knowingly possess a drug or substance, and
- The drug or substance must be illegal
You can also be charged with constructive possession if law enforcement can prove that you may have joint ownership of the drugs or controlled substances.
Penalties for possession of a controlled substance depend on the classification of the substance.
Class 4 Felonies
- Dangerous Drugs
You can face up to 3 ¾ years of incarceration, and fines up to $150,000.
Methamphetamine possession can also be charged as a Class 2 Felony if over 9 grams. That amount is deemed sellable.
Class 5 Felonies
- Drugs that Emit Toxic Vapors
You can face up to 2 ½ years of incarceration, and fines up to $150,000.
Class 6 Felonies
You can face up to 2 years of incarceration, and fines up to $150,000.
Marijuana possession can also be charged as a Class 4 or 5 Felony depending on the amount. Any amount over 2 pounds will face increased charged.
Class 1 Misdemeanor
- Prescription Drugs
You can face up to 6 months of incarceration, and fines up to $1,000.
Possession of any category of a controlled substance can also result in drug abuse classes and counseling. You will not be able to substitute classes and counseling for jail time if your charge was increased due to the amount of drug possessed. Any of the charges can be lessened or increases based on your past criminal history, if you intended to sell, or possessed a very large amount.
If this is a first time drug offense, you may be eligible for drug diversion programs. These programs allow first-time offenders to attend drug-counseling classes, submit to random drug tests, and remain on probation in exchange for dropping the charges of their crime.
It is also illegal to possess paraphernalia like syringes, glass pipes, bongs, vaporizers, or any other device that can be used to administer or store illegal drugs. If found with paraphernalia you could face up to six months of incarceration.
Possession of chemicals and equipment used for methamphetamine are charged as a Class 2 Felony, and you could face up to seven years of incarceration.
What To Do If You Are Charged
If you are charged with possession of a controlled substance there are steps you can take to help your cause. You do not need to speak to the police, remain silent until you hire an attorney who can best advise you. Also remain aware of what actions the police take to collect evidence against you. Search and seizure can be illegal without a warrant.
If you have been charged with possession of a controlled substance you could face serious life-altering penalties. Cliff Hill is an experienced attorney who knows how to determine the best defense for your case and will help guide you through your next decision. Cliff Hill has the knowledge and experience you need to get results.