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Union County NJ Criminal Defense Lawyers

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Westfield NJ Drug Possession Attorney

Possession of CDS in the Town of Westfield

It is illegal to be in possession of a controlled dangerous substance (“CDS”) in the Town of Westfield without having a valid prescription for the drug. If you have been arrested for possessing drugs, your case will likely be heard at the Union County Superior Court in Elizabeth. This is where drug cases involving cocaine, heroin, MDMA, LSD and almost every other form of possession other than 50 grams or less of marijuana are handled. Here at the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, we can offer representation from a team of criminal lawyers with over a century of collective experience with several staff members who are ex-prosecutors. Our attorneys have defended just about any pedigree of possession of CDS offense you could imagine and have the know-how required to insure you have every opportunity to avert a conviction. An attorney at the Marshall Firm has the background and skill to evaluate your case, consider all of the important constitutional issues that can and should be raised in your defense, and negotiate a resolution that can minimize or eliminate any harsh penalties that could be imposed as a result of a CDS possession charge. Call our office at 908-272-1700 for a free consultation with a lawyer now.

Drug Possession Charge in Westfield New Jersey

Virtually all CDS possession cases are governed by New Jersey statute N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10. That statute makes it unlawful for any person to knowingly possess CDS, either actively or constructively, without a prescription. Actual possession means having the drugs on your person. Constructive possession, by contrast, means having the intent and capability to control CDS that is not in your direct possession. Both varieties of possession can trigger a violation of 2C:35-10 and our lawyers can help you defend these offenses, including those involving:

Prescription drug charges in Westfield and elsewhere in the state are governed by a separate statute, namely, N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10.5. The same is true if you have been charged with manufacturing, distributing or possession with intent to distribute CDS. Please refer to our Westfield drug distribution page for information on this subject. 

A charge for possession of CDS under 2C:35-10 can result in a third degree crime, fourth degree crime or disorderly persons offense depending on the type of drug involved. The breakdown of this grading is summarized as follows:

Third Degree Crime. Possession of a drug like cocaine and heroin is a third-degree crime, punishable by 3 to 5 years in prison, and a fine of up to $35,000.00.

Fourth Degree Crime. Possession of more than 50 grams of marijuana or more than 5 grams of hashish is a fourth-degree crime, punishable by up to 18 months in prison, and a fine of up to $25,000.

Disorderly Persons Offense. Possession of 50 grams or less of marijuana, or 5 grams or less of hashish is a disorderly persons offense, punishable by up to 6 months in jail, and a fine of up to $1,000.

Possession of CDS in a School Zone. Any person who commits CDS possession on or within 1,000 feet of school property must perform at least 100 hours of community service, if he or she was not sentenced to imprisonment.

License Suspension. All drug possession charges also result in a mandatory suspension of your driver’s license ranging from 6 months to 2 years. If your lawyer can demonstrate, however, that you will suffer a significant hardship, the court may waive the suspension.

Programs for First-time offenders. If you are first-time offender, you can avoid prosecution for the offense by entering into one of two programs: Pre-Trial Intervention (for those charged with indictable offenses), and Conditional Discharge (for those charged with disorderly persons offenses). A Marshall Firm attorney can assist you in getting access to either program. Both allow you to avoid prosecution, avoid a criminal record, and any of the penalties listed above.

Westfield CDS Possession Defense Lawyer

CDS possession can be a very serious crime that can have significant consequences on your life. You do not need to face the charges alone. The lawyers at The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall have particular expertise in helping clients in drug possession cases in Westfield Municipal Court and at the Union County Courthouse. If you were charged for possessing drugs/CDS, an attorney with decades of experience is ready to come to your assistance immediately. To discuss what can be accomplished for you, contact our office for a free consultation with an lawyer on our staff. Attorneys can be reached immediately at 908-272-1700 for a free consultation.