An arrest for simple methamphetamine possession may be prosecuted either as a felony or as a misdemeanor. Possession for use is defined by the amount of the drug in your possession at the time of the arrest, as well as the circumstances in which it is found. If you are carrying, for instance, ten grams of methamphetamine but it is contained in ten small packets then it may be interpreted as possession for sale. If you are carrying more than that, it probably will be interpreted as possession for sale and it will be up to your attorney to convince the prosecutor and court otherwise.
Conviction of methamphetamine possession can result in a prison sentence of up to three years. In many cases, however, the court is willing to consider a PC 1000 or a Proposition 36 sentence, either of which require that you attend a drug rehabilitation and counseling program of at least twelve weeks and to go on probation. Under Proposition 36, the judge has a great deal of flexibility in setting the terms of probation. It may require scheduled counseling, regular drug testing, r employment. If, however, there is a violation of probation or a drug relapse either a more restrictive drug program or some jail time is likely to result. A good drug defense attorney can be the difference between jail and probationary treatment in these cases.
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An arrest for possession for sale means that the arresting officers found reason to believe that the drugs were meant for distribution or sale to others. It is an automatic felony. The evidence that can lead to that conclusion may include an absence of drug paraphernalia, which suggests the drugs weren’t for personal use. If the drugs are packaged for small, single sales, that can suggest an intent to sell. And of course, the amount of drugs found may lead to a charge of possession with intent to sell, or transporting drugs with intent to sell. If you sell methamphetamine to a narcotics officer you’ll need all the help you can get — so the sooner you contact the Law Offices of Anna R. Yum the more chance you have to minimize the impact of your arrest.
While there is no defined amount of methamphetamine that is assumed to be for personal use, it often doesn’t take much to lead to a possession for sale charge. In Arizona, for example, possession of any amount above nine grams is considered possession for sale. San Diego has long had a reputation as a gateway for Mexican methamphetamine which has caused criminal justice authorities to pursue methamphetamine arrests aggressively. That’s why it is critical that you engage a methamphetamine defense attorney immediately, so that the evidence against you can be carefully managed.
The sentencing laws for this crime are severe with regard to the amount of drugs recovered in the arrest and subsequent investigation. The California Health and Safety Code states that possession of an ounce or more of methamphetamine requires a jail sentence. Conviction for possession of a kilogram of methamphetamine can add three years to that sentence. Once again, the management of evidence by a qualified defense attorney is imperative in order to minimize the facts before the court. Our law offices know how to prepare an energetic defense and exclude as much damaging evidence and testimony as possible. Sale of the drug also requires a minimum of 180 days in jail, although in some cases your attorney may be able to negotiate probation.
Methamphetamine Trafficking and Manufacturing
In San Diego’s state courts, charges related to the manufacture of methamphetamine can result in equally severe mandatory sentences. There are several things an experienced methamphetamine defense attorney can do to help reduce the impact of evidence against you, or even get evidence dismissed based on search and seizure violations. Conviction of manufacturing methamphetamine in California will draw a jail sentence of three to seven years and a $50,000 fine. Possession of manufacturing supplies and equipment can lead to a prison sentence of two to six years.