Charged with Drug Possession or Distribution? You Could Be Facing Serious Fines and Jail Time
If you have been charged with a drug-related offense in Mercer County, New Jersey, you could be facing serious criminal penalties, including fines and possible jail time. New Jersey prosecutors often seek to impose the maximum penalty for drug-related offenses. If you have been arrested and charged with a drug-related crime in Mercer County, New Jersey, you need an experienced criminal defense attorney to fight the drug charges, and do whatever it takes to try to keep you out of jail.
From my office in Hamilton Township, I represent people throughout Mercer County who are facing charges of drug-related crimes. My clients are from Lawrence Township, Princeton, East Windsor Township, and Trenton, and the areas in between.
As a former prosecutor, I have both prosecuted and defended all manner of drug-related crimes, including possession or distribution of controlled dangerous substances like marijuana, cocaine, heroin, and ecstasy, as well as the non-prescription use of prescription drugs like Vicodin or OxyContin. It is important to know that, in New Jersey, the possession, use, or distribution of prescription drugs without a prescription is illegal and is chargeable as an Indictable Crime.
New Jersey Drug Charges and Penalties
The State of New Jersey breaks crimes into three categories: Indictable Crimes, Disorderly Person offenses, and Petty Disorderly offenses. Most drug crimes are charged as Indictable Crimes with sentenced ranging from probation, probation with jail time and state prison.
Indictable Crimes are further divided into First, Second, Third, and Fourth Degree Crimes, with First Degree Indictable Crimes being the most severe, and Fourth Degree Indictable Crimes the least severe.
New Jersey Describes Illegal Drugs as “Controlled dangerous Substances” (CDS)
New Jersey identifies illegal drugs as Controlled Dangerous Substances (CDS) and divides them into five “Schedules” based on their probability of abuse and addiction, and whether they have any recognized medical value. Thus, a Schedule I CDS has a high probability of abuse and addiction with no recognized medical value, while a Schedule V CDS has a relatively low probability of abuse or addiction and a recognized medical value.
Most Mercer County, New jersey drug charges are Third or Fourth Degree Indictable Offenses. A Third Degree Indictable Offense for possession of a Schedule I, II, III, or IV CDS can result in a fine of up to $35,000, 3 to 5 years in prison, or both. A Fourth Degree Indictable Offense for possession of a Schedule V CDS can result in a fine of up to $15,000, up to 18 months in jail, or both.
If you have been charged with a drug-related crime in New Jersey, it is important that you obtain legal counsel as quickly as possible. The stakes are high. Not only are you facing the possibility of jail time and tens of thousands of dollars in fines; if you are convicted of a drug-related offense, you could become ineligible for student loans, security clearances, and certain types of jobs.
The Slaven Law Firm: Your Defense Against Drug Charges in Mercer County, New Jersey
The consequences of a conviction for a drug-related offense can be severe. But there is hope.
If you’ve been charged with a drug crime in Mercer County, New Jersey, don’t just assume you’ll be convicted. It is imperative that you find experienced legal counsel that you can trust. Don’t say anything to the police, or anyone else, for that matter, and tell police that you want to speak to an attorney.
I make sure to keep my clients informed, and will meet with you throughout your case, giving you all the information possible so that you can make the best decision regarding your case.
My philosophy is to prepare every case as it it is going to trial. Diligent preparation is the best way to increase the odds of the most favorable outcome. Applying a no-stone-unturned investigative style, I use information I learn in discovery and through preparation to challenge the evidence against you, the manner in which it was obtained, and whether it is admissible. If I can exclude some, or all of the evidence against you, dismissal, a diversionary program, or a plea may be more likely. However, through my extensive preparation, I am ready to take any case to trial.
If you have questions about a drug-related crime in Mercer County, New Jersey, contact criminal defense attorney Stephen Slaven today.