Although a bill to legalize marijuana in New Jersey is on the table, it’s still against the law to possess marijuana and other drugs in New Jersey. Drug laws are essentially separated into two sections: possession and manufacture-distribution-or intent to distribute laws.
New Jersey penalties associated with possession of drugs (controlled substances) vary according to the amount of the substance and the type of substance in your possession. The bottom line is that New Jersey’s drug possession laws are harsh:
Under N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10A(4) (Possession of less than 50 g of marijuana), you face the possibility of a disorderly individual’s offense (a maximum six-month jail term, $1,000 fine, loss of your driver’s license, and required drug rehab). If you’re in possession of more than 50 g of marijuana, you face a criminal offense in the fourth degree, punishable by a maximum 18-month prison sentence and $15,000 fine.
Under N.J.S.A. 2C-35-10, (Possession of narcotics or controlled substances) possessing dangerous drugs like GHB, cocaine, ecstasy, heroin, LSD, methamphetamine, opiates, depressants, and other illegal narcotics means you’ll face a minimum three-year and maximum five-year prison sentence, fines from $1,000 – $25,000, voided driver’s license, and required drug rehab and education programs.
Under N.J.S.A. 2C:36-2, (Possession of drug paraphernalia) you may face up to six months in jail, a minimum $500 to a maximum $1,000 fine, and driver’s license suspension up to 24 months.
If charged with possession of unauthorized prescription drugs, you may face a third-degree charge with a maximum five-year prison term plus significant fines. N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5 describes the laws concerning the manufacture, distribution, or possession of drugs with intent to distribute. If convicted of any of these charges, you face stiff punishments:
You can be charged with a fourth, third, second, or first-degree offense when marijuana is involved, depending on the quantity of cannabis or marijuana involved.
The Law Office of John W. Tumelty, New Jersey Supreme Court Certified Trial Attorney, represents people facing drug charges. There are many ways to defend drug cases at trial. Contact us for an initial case evaluation.