Springfield NJ Drug Possession Attorney
Possession of CDS in Springfield Township
Possession of a controlled dangerous substance (CDS) like cocaine, heroin, LSD, MDMA (Ecstasy & Molly), crystal meth, crack, and marijuana can result in a criminal record, stiff monetary fines, and jail time. If you have been arrested by the Springfield Police Department for drug possession, you should obtain the services of a seasoned criminal defense attorney to handle your case. Not only does a CDS case involve issues with regard to whether the substance was actually a narcotic or in your possession, but also complicated constitutional issues involving search and seizure of drugs, and the right against self incrimination. In order to navigate all of those complicated legal issues, consider contacting The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall as our lawyers have been serving the Township of Springfield for decades. The attorneys at the firm have the years of experience to skillfully and aggressively handle your defense, ensuring that all aspects of your case are thoroughly explored. The first consultation with an attorney on our staff is free. Call us for immediate assistance at 908-272-1700.
CDS Possession Offense in Springfield New Jersey
Most drug possession cases are controlled by New Jersey statute N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10. That statute states as follows:
a. It is unlawful for any person, knowingly or purposely, to obtain, or to possess, actually or constructively, a controlled dangerous substance or controlled substance analog, . . . Any person who violates this section with respect to:
(1) A controlled dangerous substance, or its analog, classified in Schedule I, II, III or IV other than those specifically covered in this section, is guilty of a crime of the third degree [and] a fine of up to $35,000.00 may be imposed;
(2) Any controlled dangerous substance, or its analog, classified in Schedule V, is guilty of a crime of the fourth degree [and] a fine of up to $15,000.00 may be imposed;
(3) Possession of more than 50 grams of marijuana, including any adulterants or dilutants, or more than five grams of hashish is guilty of a crime of the fourth degree, [and] a fine of up to $25,000.00 may be imposed; or
(4) Possession of 50 grams or less of marijuana, including any adulterants or dilutants, or five grams or less of hashish is a disorderly person.
Any person who commits any offense defined in this section while on any property used for school purposes which is owned by or leased to any elementary or secondary school or school board, or within 1,000 feet of any such school property or a school bus, or while on any school bus, and who is not sentenced to a term of imprisonment, shall, in addition to any other sentence which the court may impose, be required to perform not less than 100 hours of community service.
Actual vs. Constructive. An issue that often arises in drug possession cases is whether the accused is in possession of the illegal substance. Possession can be either actual or constructive, and both constitute possession under the law. Actual possession is when the CDS is found on your person. Constructive possession, by contrast, is where the CDS is not on your person, but you exercise control over it (either directly or through another person) and can obtain actual possession when you desire.
Drug Classifications. The statute mentions that a CDS can be Schedule I, II, III, etc. Those “Schedules” come from the federal Controlled Substances Act. Heroin, MDMA, Ecstasy, Molly, LSD and marijuana are examples of Schedule I drugs; and cocaine, morphine, oxycodone, and opium are examples of Schedule II drugs. Most prescription legend drugs fall under Schedule IV such as Xanax, Oxycodone, Hydrocodone, Vicodin, Suboxone and Valium
Penalties for Drug Possession. As you can see from the statute above, possession crimes are third-degree, fourth-degree and disorderly persons offenses. A third degree crime for possession of drugs are punishable by 3 to 5 years in prison and up to $35,000 in fines. The penalties for a fourth degree crime for CDS possession results in up to 18 months in prison and up to $15,000 in fines ($25,000 if it is marijuana). A disorderly persons drug possession charge carries up to 6 months in jail and up to $1,000 in fines. An individual convicted of any grade of drug possession in Springfield NJ is also subject to a driver’s license suspension of at least 6 months and as much as 24 months.
Possible Defenses to Drug Possession. Some defenses that can typically be raised in drug possession cases include (i) police did not have probable cause to search you or your car; (ii) police did not have probable cause to arrest you; (iii) police lacked the reasonable suspicion to conduct an initial stop;(iv) police failed to explain that you could refuse consent to search your vehicle; or (v) you were not in possession of CDS, to name a few.
Springfield NJ CDS Possession Defense Lawyer
Possession of cocaine, heroin, MDMA, marijuana, LSD, OxyContin that was not prescribed to, methamphetamine, or any other CDS can land you in a great deal of trouble. The lawyers on the defense team of the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall can help you make sure you are not convicted of a CDS possession offense in Springfield. An attorney at our firm is here to help you through the ordeal of your drug charge. We understand the legal process as accomplished criminal attorneys, as well as the steps necessary to successfully defend your case, and what you need to get through this difficult time. Call 908-272-1700 for a free initial consultation with an a lawyer now.