Felony Drug Charges
For those convicted of a felony distribution and/or possession of controlled substances (felony drug charges), there is a high likelihood of a long prison sentence. However, beyond the prison sentence, there are possibilities of additional consequences arising from convictions of being in possession or distributing controlled substances.
A conviction for felony drug charges has ramifications that will affect you at every turn of your future life.
Even simply being charged with possession of a controlled substance can have severe consequences. Such a charge usually part of a complex and intimidating process, a process which can easily be exacerbated by your case being handled by an unsympathetic judge.
Understanding Felony Drug Possession
A new sentencing scheme concerning felony drug charges was enacted back on October 1, 2013, which is sort of a guideline of the minimum and maximum sentencing as well as the minimum mandatory parole in relation to possession of drugs. For a proper understanding of the sentencing scheme, below are examples of the crimes as well as sentencing:
- Level 1: This level bears a maximum sentence of 32 years and or a fine of $1 million and a minimum sentence of 8 years and or a fine of $5,000. The mandatory period of parole is 3 years.
- Level 2: Level 2 bears a maximum sentence of 8 years and or a fine of $750,000 and a minimum sentence of 4 years and or a fine of $3,000. The mandatory period of parole is 2 years.
- Level 3: This level bears a maximum sentence of 4 years and or a fine of $500,000 and a minimum sentence of 2 years and or a fine of $2,000. The mandatory period of parole is 1 years.
- Level 4: This level bears a maximum sentence of 6 months to 1 year and or a fine of $ 100,000 and a minimum sentence of 5 months and or a fine of $1,000. The mandatory period of parole is 1 years.
However, it is important to note that these sentence ranges apply are “presumptive range.” As such, if the judge determines that your case has extraordinary aggravating circumstances, he or she can double the maximum sentence applied.
In addition to the above, it is important to acquaint yourself with the criteria that are used to determine the applicable felony level. The first of such criteria is the type of particular controlled substance that is involved. As you might be aware, different drugs are categorized in different “Schedules.” Schedule I drugs are the most serious drugs to possess while Schedule V drugs are the least serious drugs to possess.
Every state controls and regulates the personal use and possession of controlled dangerous substances (CDS) such as heroin, cocaine, and marijuana. However, each state employs its own definition of CDS and the resulting sentences. For instance, in Colorado, the drugs, as well as compounds used to make the drugs, are considered as controlled substances. Possession of drug paraphernalia is also illegal.
In Colorado, the classification of drugs is divided into five Schedules, which are:
Schedule I Drugs – These are the drugs that have no accepted medical use, have a high abuse potential, or are unsafe to use in treatment (even when supervised by medical practitioners), including synthetic heroin and opiates.
Schedule II Drugs – These are the drugs that although they have an accepted medical use, they can result in severe physical dependence when abused and they have high abuse potential. They include opium and its various derivatives.
Schedule III Drugs – Schedule III drugs have an accepted medical use and can cause limited to moderate physical dependence and high psychological dependence. However, they have a low potential for abuse (a lower abuse potential than Schedule I and II drugs). Such drugs include anabolic steroids.
Schedule IV Drugs – These drugs have an accepted medical use and can only cause limited physical and psychological dependence, especially when compared to Schedule III drugs. Importantly, they have a lower abuse potential than Schedule I, II, and III drugs. Such drugs include lorazepam.
Schedule V Drugs – These are drugs with accepted medical uses, they lead to the least possible physical and psychological dependence and have the least potential for abuse.
The Possession Of A Controlled Substance Has Life-Altering Consequences
It’s important to note that the information provided in this article is focused on the issue of possession of a controlled substance. Different and varying sentences are given when it comes to the matter of possession for manufacture or distribution of a controlled substance.
As you might now appreciate, possessions of controlled substance charges are serious charges and have the potential to disrupt your life in ways you never imagined. As such you need the best defense possible. One common strategy of beating such cases is to challenge the legality of the evidence presented by the police when the evidence is collected through illegal means.
With this in mind, under no circumstances should you give police the permission to search you, your home, or your vehicle. For the police to conduct a search, they need to have a probable cause, and when you give them the permission to do so, they do not need any other independent reason to conduct their search.
You Need An Experienced Felony Drug Charges Lawyer To Aggressively Protect Your Rights
Importantly, when all is said and done, the services of an experienced criminal defense attorney are of the utmost importance when defending the case of drug possession in Colorado. The penalties for a conviction are severe, and the related consequences can hound you for years after a prison sentence has been served. That’s why you need an experienced, aggressive felony drug charges lawyer like Jeremy Loew to defend your rights every step of the way.
Like most things in life, we can offer no guarantees. What we can offer is an experienced and tactical defense strategy designed to give you the best outcome possible if you’ve been charged with felony drug charges.
Give Jeremy Loew a call now for a free consultation to protect your rights and your now at (719) 387-4111.