In Orange County, drug crimes span a wide range of potential charges and penalties that all vary depending on the type of drug found, the amount of the drug discovered, what the defendant intended to do with it, and the defendant’s own criminal history. California’s Health and Safety Code defines the different drug crime laws, what is involved in each drug crime charge, the possible defenses one could utilize, and the punishments in place for each type of charge. The three most common drug crimes are possession, possession with the intent to sell, and sale or transportation of a controlled substance.
Possession is where you are found in possession of illegal drugs or narcotics that are considered “controlled substances” such as cocaine, heroin, and ecstasy. This can also include being in possession of prescription drugs without a valid prescription. There are three different types of possession that you can be charged with. The first is actual possession, where the drugs were physically found on your person. Next is constructive possession, where the drugs were found in a location or area that you have control over. Finally, you could be charged with joint possession, where you and someone else share either actual or constructive possession over the substance and are both at fault.
A charge that comes with a higher penalty is possession with the intent to sell. In order to prove that you actually planned on selling the drugs, police and prosecutors will look at additional evidence, drug paraphernalia, and other indicators of sales or transactions taking place such as the presence of weighing scales, packaging materials, larger quantities of drugs beyond what would be for personal use, and significant amounts of cash.
Finally, a more serious charge you could be accused of is the sale or transportation of a controlled substance. If you are caught selling the actual drugs, giving them away, or transporting them from one location to another in exchange for money, you could be facing this charge which California considers as a felony.
Because drug crimes can be very involved and complicated at times, it is important to understand the charges and the possible punishments you could be facing if convicted in Orange County. Having an experienced drug crime attorney like the Law Office of Michael L. Guisti on your side during these difficult situations is imperative. We are ready to take on your case, so give us a call today and learn more about what we can do to help you confront these serious charges in court. Contact us today at (888) 478-8999.