Massachusetts Drug Possession
Massachusetts Drug Possession is never a simple matter. Rhode Island is tough on drug possession and remains one of the toughest states for defending drug offenses with strict drug laws and penalties.
What is a Massachusetts drug possession offense?
Under The 189th General Court of The Commonwealth of Massachusetts, drug possession is defined in Section 34 as the following:
Section 34. No person knowingly or intentionally shall possess a controlled substance unless such substance was obtained directly, or pursuant to a valid prescription or order, from a practitioner while acting in the course of his professional practice, or except as otherwise authorized by the provisions of this chapter.
This includes both “recreational” drugs – such as marijuana and cocaine – as well as prescription drugs obtained without a doctor’s consent.
Recently, Massachusetts decriminalized possession of marijuana in small amounts. First offense possession of marijuana is considered a civil infraction with minor penalties of small fines. However drug possession laws quickly escalate for harder drugs and larger quantities. Even for marijuana, the possession of large amounts or the distribution of remains a criminal offense consisting of jail time and financial penalties.
Massachusetts police can charge you for felony drug charges without much evidence if they suspect you are selling any amount of drugs of any type – even small amounts of marijuana. Additionally, a criminal drug conviction can result in a driver’s license suspension for up to a year.
Massachusetts Drug Possession laws must abide by a mandatory minimum statute. This means that all courts, Massachusetts courts included, are required to impose a sentence of no less than the minimum penalties. This means jail time must be imposed to some degree by law despite any factors the state may have. Which is why it’s important to seek the services of a Massachusetts Drug Possession Defense Attorney no matter how minor the offense might seem. Call the Massachusetts Drug Possession Defense Attorneys at Murad Law for the best in criminal defense at 617-315-0016.
Massachusetts Drug Categories
Masachusetts categorizes drug offenses into five seperate categories based on the controlled substance in question.
Class A Substances
Class A Substances are considered the most dangerous drugs due to their addictive nature. It includes opiate-based drugs in its many forms and elements. One of the most popular drugs in this category is heroin along with a skyrocketing growth in bath salts.
Penalties for Drug Possession of Class A Substances
- Maximum of 2 years in prison for a first time offense
- Maximum of 2.5 years in prison for a second offense
Class B Substance
Class B Substances include many popular party drugs including ecstasy, Molly, meth, oxycodone and cocaine. These drugs have been produced from a substance of vegetative origin and extracted through chemical synthesis.
Penalties for Drug Possession of Class B Substances
- Maximum of 1 year in prison for a first time offense
- Maximum of 2 years in prison for a second offense
Class C Substance
Class C Substances include any compound or mixture of a drug with depressant effects on the nervous system. This includes popular prescription drugs such as Diazepam, Methyprylon and Lorazepam.
Penalties for Drug Possession of Class C Substances
- Maximum of 2 years in prison for a first time offense and multiple offenses
Class D Substance
Class D Substances include any type of drug containing THC. This includes hashish and marijuana products. A person in possession of a THC-containing drug may be subject to a 6-month probation. Future repeat violations can potentially lead to increasing penalties including fines, drug treatment programs and/or jail time.
Penalties for Drug Possession of Class D Substances
Possession of 1 oz. or more of marijuana
- 1 year loss of driver’s license
- Fines and fees
- 2-year penalty of underlying offenses if near a school, park or playground
Class E Substances
Class E substances include any compound, mixture or preperatation of limited quantities of narcotic drugs mixed with nonnarcotic ingredients. The list includes:
(1) Not more than 200 milligrams of codeine per 100 milliliters or per 100 grams (2) Not more than 100 milligrams of dihydrocodeine per 100 milliliters or per 100 grams (3) Not more than 100 milligrams of ethylmorphine per 100 milliliters or per 100 grams (4) Not more than 2.5 milligrams of diphenoxylate and not less than 25 micrograms of atropine sulfate per dosage unit (5) Not more than 100 milligrams of opium per 100 milliliters or per 100 grams (b) Prescription drugs other than those included in Classes A, B, C, D, and subsection (a) of this Class.
Additionally, anyone inducing a minor under the age of 18 to distribute or sell a substance is subject to a minimum five years in prison.
If you’ve been convicted of Drug Possession in Massachusetts, call the Boston Drug Possession Attorneys at Murad Law at 617-227-4648 for defense.