Penalties For A Drug Related Charge In Virginia
What Are The Penalties Involved In The Drug Possession Cases For A First-time Offender As Well As For Multiple Offenders?
Simple possession of a controlled substance like marijuana has its own unique punishment range. For a first offense marijuana possession it is a misdemeanor; punishment is not more than 30 days in jail, along with a fine of not more than $500. For first offenders, the Code of Virginia provides for a first offender program. Successful completion of the first offender program results in a dismissal of the charge.
For possession of a Schedule I or a Schedule II drug, the punishment is not less than one year in prison and no more than 10 years in prison or in some cases, up to 12 months in prison or jail and a maximum fine of $2,500 for a Class V felony.
For Schedule III drugs, the punishment range is not more than 12 months in jail and a fine of not more than $2,500, which is a Class I misdemeanor. For possession of a Schedule IV drug, the punishment range is not more than six months in jail and a fine of not more than $1,000. This is also classified as a Class I misdemeanor.
For possession of a Schedule V drug and a fine of not more than $500 and is considered a Class III misdemeanor. Possession of a Schedule VI drug is a fine of not more than $250 and that’s considered a Class V misdemeanor.
When talking about distribution or possession with intent to distribute as it relates to marijuana, punishment is based on weight. For example, if you have not more than one-half an ounce of marijuana, the punishment range is not more than 12 months in jail and a fine of not more than $2,500. If you have more than one-half ounce of marijuana but not more than five pounds of marijuana, the punishment ranges up to 10 years in prison and a fine of not more than $2,500.
For more than five pounds of marijuana, the punishment ranges not less than five years and no more than 30 years in prison. The punishment for manufacturing marijuana is not less than five years but no more than 30 years in prison and a fine that should not exceed $10,000. The punishment for manufacturing, selling or distributing of Schedule I or Schedule II drugs or transporting them into the Commonwealth is not less than five years and no more than 40 years and a fine of not more than half a million dollars.
For the same offense, manufacturing, selling, giving or distributing Schedule III, IV or V drugs, the punishment is not more than 12 months in jail and a fine of not more than $2,500. There are some other enhancements in terms of penalties. If you are selling drugs on or near school property such as universities, state hospitals, public recreation centers, community centers or at a public library, it’s going to make it a felony. This would be punishable by a mandatory sentence of not less than one year and no more than five years in prison and a fine of not more than $100,000.
Most drug convictions in Virginia also result in a forfeiture of your driver’s license. Then there are additional penalties for sale of drugs to someone who is under the age of 18 and there are mandatory minimum sentences for that. In terms of trafficking, the punishment range in the following amounts is punishable by imprisonment of five years to life and a fine of not more than one million dollars. This punishment is for one hundred or more grams of heroin, cocaine 500 g or more, cocaine base 250 g or more, methamphetamines 10 g or more. Anything in those amounts or more is punishable by imprisonment of five years to life.
What Are The Penalties For Forging A Drug Prescription In Virginia?
Forgery of a drug prescription is a Class VI felony in Virginia. This means the punishment range is not less than one year in prison and up to five years in prison and/or up to 12 months in jail. The unique thing about drug prescription law in Virginia is that it doesn’t outlaw possession of a fake prescription, even if you know it’s fake.
What’s illegal is the making or using or attempt to use the fake prescription, using a fake name or a fake ID to fill a prescription, using fake prescription labels on bottles, concealing a prescription from an employer, or lying to a physician in order to get the physician to write a prescription for a particular drug. That also comes with a sentence of five years maximum imprisonment with a six-month loss of your license or your privilege to drive.
Are Penalties Typically Heavier If Minors Are Involved In These Cases?
Penalties are more severe if there are minors involved. That’s one of the ways that a mandatory minimum applies in Virginia. If you are over 18 years old and you are involved in the distribution or sale of a Schedule I, Schedule II or Schedule III, Schedule IV or Schedule I through IV drug, or marijuana to someone who is under 18 and they are three years your junior, there is a mandatory minimum of five years in prison. If you have that age gap, the defendant is over 18, and the victim or person involved is under 18, there is a three-year age gap. When dealing with less than one ounce of marijuana, then the mandatory minimum is reduced to two years. Virginia is not the place to be arrested for drug charges.
If you need details about the Penalties For A Drug Related Charge In Virginia, call the BUGG LAW FIRM, PLLC for a FREE Initial Consultation at (703) 552-2462 and get the information and legal answers you’re seeking.