Possession and distribution of Mephedrone & Other Bath Salts
Mephedrone or methylenedioxymethcathinone usage has gained popularity and this has drawn the attention of police and prosecutors. Controlled dangerous substances (“cds”) containing mephedrone, MDPV, methylone, methedrone, 3-MMC or flephedrone are referred to as “bath salts” and a specific law has been adopted to combat their usage in accordance with N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5.3a. If you have been charged with possession or distribution of these drugs, a conviction results in severe penalties under this statute. Hiring an attorney skilled in the defense of drug charges in an absolute must for anyone faced with an offense for possessing or distributing mephedrone or other forms of bath salts.
Our firm, The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, has the qualification to effectively protect you against a conviction for this violation. Our eight criminal attorneys, including county and municipal prosecutors, have defended countless cds offenses at the Union County Superior Court and in municipalities like Elizabeth, Union, Winfield, Mountainside and Rahway. We have dealt with just about any scenario you can imagine and this has armed us with the skills to navigate even the most serious of drug cases. To speak to a lawyer on our defense team immediately in a free initial consultation, contact our Union Township Office at 90-272-1700.
New Jersey Bath Salts Charges Under N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5.3a
As previously stated, the distribution or possession of bath salts is regulated by N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5.3a. This law provides that:
a. It is a crime for any person knowingly or purposely to manufacture, distribute or dispense, or to possess or have under his control with intent to manufacture, distribute, or dispense substances containing: 4-methylmethcathinone (mephedrone, 4-MMC); 3,4-methylenedioxypyrovalerone (MDPV); 3,4-methylenedioxymethcathinone (methylone, MDMC), 4-methoxymethcathinone (methedrone, bk-PMMA, PMMC); 3-fluoromethcathinone (3-FMC); or 4-fluoromethcathinone (flephedrone, 4-FMC).
b. A person who violates subsection a. of this section where the quantity involved is one ounce or more is guilty of a crime of the second degree.
c. A person who violates subsection a. of this section where the quantity involved is less than one ounce is guilty of a crime of the third degree.
As you will quickly note, an individual may only be convicted of a violation under 2C:35-5.3a if their conduct is knowing or purposeful. What this means is that there was, at a minimum, a conscious awareness of the presence of the drugs and an intention to engage in the conduct complained of (i.e. possess/distribution/manufacture). The other important thing that should be pointed out is that a bath salt offense is always an indictable felony offense (i.e. second degree crime or third degree crime).
Grading of a Bath Salts Offense
Where the amount possessed or distributed is one ounce or more, N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5.3a makes it a second degree crime. Intent to distribute or possession of less than one ounce of bath salts is a third degree crime.
A second degree crime results in a fine of up to $150,000 and 5-10 years in state prison. A third degree bath salts charge carries a fine as high as $15,000 and up to 5 years in prison.
Elizabeth NJ Bath Salt Charges Defense Attorneys
Since all bath salt cases involve indictable crimes, they can only be heard in Elizabeth at the Superior Court. The attorneys at The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall are equipped to provide skilled representation in the defense of this serious criminal charge. Whether you were arrested in Fanwood, New Providence, Linden, Plainfield or Westfield, we have the knowledge and experience to defend your mephedrone, methylmethcathinone, fluoromethcathinone or other bath salt related possession or distribution case. We are former prosecutors and experienced defense lawyers who have been handling drug violations in Union County for decades. An attorney is ready to assist you immediately at 908-272-1700.