FAIRFAX DRUG CRIMES LAWYER WILL PROTECT YOUR RIGHTS
Like the other states, Virginia aggressively enforces laws against illegal drug possession, sale, manufacturing, and cultivation. A drug crime in Virginia may be prosecuted as a felony or as a misdemeanor. It depends primarily on these factors:
- The amount and type of unlawful drugs in question
- Whether a suspect is charged with possessing, selling, or manufacturing unlawful drugs
If you’re accused of any drug-related crime in or near Fairfax, you cannot afford to have the wrong lawyer. You must be represented by a Fairfax drug crimes attorney with ample experience and a record of success defending those accused of drug violations in Northern Virginia.
WHAT ARE THE MARIJUANA LAWS IN VIRGINIA?
The possession of marijuana is against the law in this state unless you have a doctor’s prescription. Otherwise, possession is a misdemeanor that may be penalized on conviction for a first offense with a 30-day jail term and a $500 fine.
Second marijuana possession convictions may be penalized with a one-year jail term and a $2,500 fine.
The law is harsher on those who grow marijuana illegally or possess marijuana with an intent to sell. Penalties depend on the quantity of marijuana in question. Growing 5 pounds or more is considered a felony that may be penalized with a $10,000 fine and a 5-to-30-year prison term.
WHAT ABOUT OTHER CRIMES INVOLVING ILLEGAL DRUGS?
Illegal drugs are divided by Virginia law into 6 “schedules” or categories. Schedule I and Schedule II include the most hazardous drugs. A drug’s schedule and the quantity of the drug in question determine the specific charges in any particular case.
Usually, with Schedule I or Schedule II drugs, defendants are prosecuted for a Class 5 felony punishable on conviction with a $2,500 fine and as much as 10 years in state prison. Other drug crimes and penalties in this state include:
- Schedule III drug crimes: These are usually considered Class 1 misdemeanors and are punishable on conviction with a $2,500 fine and one year behind bars.
- Schedule IV drug crimes: These are typically considered Class 2 misdemeanors and are punishable on conviction with a 180-day jail term and a $1,000 fine.
- Schedule V drug crimes: These are usually considered Class 3 misdemeanors and are punishable on conviction with a $500 fine.
- Schedule VI drug crimes: These are generally considered Class 4 misdemeanors and are punishable on conviction with a $250 fine.
ARE THERE OTHER OPTIONS FOR FIRST-TIME OFFENDERS?
Qualified first-time offenders may become eligible to serve probation by partaking in a First Offender Program that includes drug classes, clinical treatment, and frequent testing. Failure to complete the program may be punished with time in jail for the underlying original drug charge.
Anyone who transports particular drugs into this state with an intention to sell at least an ounce of a Schedule I or II drug, at least an ounce of cocaine, or five or more ounces of marijuana may be prosecuted for a felony charge: transporting illegal drugs into Virginia.
That crime is punishable on conviction with 5 to 40 years in prison, a fine as high as $1 million, and a mandatory minimum prison term of 3 years. The mandatory minimum prison term rises to 10 years with any subsequent conviction.
CAN A LAWYER HELP?
The facts are clear. Drug and drug-related crimes are penalized harshly in Virginia. If you’re accused of any drug crime in this state, you cannot afford to hire the wrong defense attorney.
Trying to act as your own attorney isn’t a very good idea, either. Drug laws are just too complex and confusing, and you could make a big mistake or say something that could be used in court against you.
WHAT WILL A LAWYER DO TO WIN THE JUSTICE YOU NEED?
There are a number of ways to contest a drug crime charge. When a suspect has been falsely accused of possessing someone else’s unlawful drugs, or if police officers violated a suspect’s rights while gathering evidence, the charge can sometimes be dismissed.
The defense strategy your lawyer offers will depend on the circumstances and details of the case. For two decades, Fairfax drug crimes attorney Scott C. Nolan has successfully represented scores of clients who have been accused of drug violations in the Fairfax area.
If dropping the charge or dismissing the charge isn’t possible, attorney Scott C. Nolan can take your case to trial and ask jurors to find you not guilty of a drug crime. If the evidence is conclusive against you, he will argue for alternative sentencing such as a First Offender Program.
Scott C. Nolan will bring your criminal drug prosecution to the most favorable conclusion. Contact his law offices by phone or online to learn more or to schedule a first legal consultation.