Possession for Sales
In California, it is illegal to have certain drugs in your possession. When you have larger amounts of these drugs, however, the law says that you can face harsher penalties. In some cases, you can also be charged with having intent to sell the drugs. You can face these charges any time you have significant amounts of drugs or have equipment that indicates the drugs might be sold, regardless of whether police actually catch you distributing or selling the drugs.
Possession for sales is a very serious crime and you could face between two and four years in prison even for a first offense. You could also be faced with large fines and a permanent criminal record. Avoiding these serious consequences should be a top priority for anyone accused of possession for sale. An experienced qualified Palm Desert defense attorney can provide you with a free evaluation of your case and can help you to fight the charges against you. Contact Michael B. Goldstein, a Professional Law Corporation today to schedule your free consultation and learn how a drug possession for sales attorney can assist you.
When Can You Be Charged with Possession for Sales?
In California, two different laws address drug sales. Health and Safety Code section 11351 makes it a crime to simply possess drugs in large enough quantities that it is likely you will sell them. Health and Safety Code section 11352 involves actual verifiable sales. If you are caught actually selling drugs, the penalties you face will be much more serious than if you simply have a lot of drugs in your possession that you might sell.
Unfortunately, in many cases, you may be charged with possession for sale even if you do not actually intend to carry out the sale of drugs. This is because the difference between simple possession and possession with intent to sell is based on certain red flags including the following:
- You have a large quantity of certain drugs on you.
- The drugs that you have are packaged into separate baggies.
- You have large amounts of drugs and lots of cash, especially cash in small denominations.
- You have scales in your possession.
- Many people visit you routinely and stay only a few minutes.
If law enforcement finds or observes any of these things, they can use this as evidence of possession for sales. You can thus face felony charges and years in jail time, even if police never actually see you selling a drug.
Penalties for Possession for Sales
Individuals charged based on actual sales of a drug are normally faced with a felony and may face between three and five years in state prison. However, your sentence could be as much as six to nine years in prison if you have transported the drugs across county lines of more than two counties.
Individuals charged with possession for sale, on the other hand, will face various penalties depending upon the kind of drugs. California Health and Safety Code section 11053-11058 divides drugs into different schedules, with Schedule I the most dangerous of drugs and schedule V the least dangerous, while Health and Safety Code section 11378 identifies penalties for possession of Schedule III, IV or V drugs and Health and Safety Code section 11359 addresses possession of marijuana with intent to sell.
For possession with intent to sell marijuana, ecstasy, MDMA or methamphetamine, you may face 16 months of incarceration or you may face between two and three years in prison. You may also be fined and may not be able to enter into a drug diversion program as you can with simple possession.
Defending Drug Charges in Palm Desert
When you are charged with possession for sale, you are innocent until proven guilty. You can defend yourself by arguing that there is insufficient evidence that you committed the crime or by arguing that you didn’t actually possess the drugs or know you possessed them. You can also defend yourself by arguing that the police violated your rights against unlawful search and seizure. It may also be possible to argue that you did not actually intend to sell the drugs and instead that the crime was simple possession.
To determine if any of these defenses are right for you, it is important to understand California drug laws and California rules of evidence. You will also need to understand when no viable defenses exist so you can explore other alternatives including plea-bargaining for a lesser penalty.
Palm Desert drug possession attorneys at Michael B. Goldstein, a Professional Law Corporation, can help you to decide how to handle the charges you are facing. An experienced drug possession attorney can review your case today so give us a call to schedule a free and confidential consultation.
Protect your rights! Call (760) 772-4278 for a free and confidential appointment today.