Zealous Defense Against Drug Possession Charges
A conviction for drug possession charges has the potential to ruin your life. Additionally, building a strong and effective defense against drug possession charges is more difficult than most people think.
At The Law Office of Jill R. Cohen, I understand how sensitive and serious the situation is when you are charged with possession of an illegal substance. Whether you are facing charges for the possession of cocaine, heroin, marijuana, prescription drugs or any other type of drug, I have the resources and experience necessary to successfully guide you through this difficult time. I am here to help you navigate the criminal justice system and protect your rights in a drug possession case or other drug crime cases.
After Your Arrest
As soon as you are arrested, the police may begin to pressure you into making a statement that may be against your best interests. When you make statements to law enforcement or the prosecution without the advice of legal counsel, you may unknowingly begin to build a case against yourself and increase the risk that more serious penalties will apply, including the loss of state and federal benefits. Financial aid, food assistance programs, renter’s assistance and other programs can become unavailable if you are convicted of certain drug possession charges. Because of these significant risks, it is important that you talk to me soon as possible after an arrest.
Penalties For Drug Possession Under New Jersey Laws
New Jersey has strict laws that prohibit possession of illicit drugs. If you are convicted of a drug possession crime, you could be facing steep penalties such as:
- Possession of illicit substances (other than marijuana): Third-degree indictable offense, with a sentence of three to five years in prison and a fine of up to $35,000
- Unlawful possession of less than 50 grams of marijuana (or five grams of hashish): Disorderly persons offense with a sentence of up to six months in jail and a fine of up to $1,000
- Unlawful possession of 50 or more grams of marijuana (or five or more grams of hashish): Fourth-degree indictable offense with a sentence of up to 18 months in prison and a fine of up to $5,000
- Unauthorized possession of prescription drugs: Third-degree indictable offense, with a sentence of three to five years in prison and a fine of up to $35,000
- Possession of drug paraphernalia (defined as any device intended to “introduce into the human body a controlled dangerous substance”): Disorderly persons offense with a sentence of up to six months in jail and a fine of up to $1,000
As you can see, even possessing a seemingly harmless amount of an illegal substance can lead to jail time and significant fines. That is why it is critical you have an experienced criminal defense attorney like me representing your interests and fighting to defend your rights when you have been charged with drug possession in New Jersey.
Frequently Asked Questions About Drug Possession
- What should I do if I am being arrested for drug possession?
- Being arrested can be a stressful experience, but you should remember to remain calm. If you resist in any way or say something, the prosecutor may be able to use that to impose additional criminal charges. You have the right to refuse to say anything to the police or to answer any of their questions about the circumstances of your arrest; instead, you should merely inform the officers or investigators that you wish to speak with an attorney as soon as possible.
- Is it possible to defend against drug possession charges if the police found drugs on me?
- When the police find drugs on your person or in your car, it can seem like a slam-dunk case for the prosecution; however, with an experienced criminal attorney, you may be able to assert legal arguments in order to have your charges reduced or even dismissed. For example, I may be able to challenge the legality of your stop or the police’s search of your person or your vehicle or your home, which would render the prosecution’s evidence as proof of an unlawful stop or search. Alternatively, because proper investigation procedures require testing any alleged drugs seized from you to confirm what those substances are, I may be able to challenge the reliability of any lab testing or point out when no testing is done at all.
Let’s Discuss Your Legal Rights And Options
You need to act quickly to protect your rights and future after any type of arrest or criminal charge. Schedule a free consultation to discuss your drug possession questions or concerns today. Call my Haddonfield office at 856-754-5501 or contact me through my online form.