Drug charges aren’t as simple as movies and television often portray. They can range from a simple misdemeanor to a series of felony charges. Worse, what moves the needle from misdemeanor to felony can be confusing for people. A seasoned drug defense lawyer can help you understand the laws around drug possession and ensure you receive the best defense possible.
Understanding Drug Charges
If you’re charged with a drug-related crime in Pennsylvania, you can find yourself facing charges on both the state and federal levels. While a small amount of a controlled substance may be limited to a misdemeanor, other charges can be added on, such as possession of paraphernalia, which can impact the overall penalty you face.
Misdemeanors may be simple in a legal sense, but their impact on you isn’t.
What Are Felony Drug Charges?
Felony drug charges include,
- Manufacturing drugs
- Delivering or selling drugs
- Possession with intent to deliver or sell drugs
- Forging a doctor’s signature or falsifying a prescription
If you find yourself facing drug charges, our attorneys will help you understand the charges and your rights.
What Is Considered a Controlled Substance?
When we talk about drugs in terms of criminal activity, we’re discussing controlled substances, or drugs that are strictly regulated in how (or if) they can be produced, sold, distributed, and used. Drugs are divided up into schedules based on their safety and health risks or addiction. These schedules help determine your penalties in your case.
Schedule I drugs include:
Schedule II Drugs Include:
- Prescription opioids such as Oxycontin, Vicodin, and Percocet
Penalties for Drug Crimes
In Pennsylvania, a number of factors affect sentencing for drug crimes. Typically, you’re driver’s license will be suspended for 6 months to 2 years, depending on the number of offenses you’ve had. Jail time ranges as well, usually up to 15 years, while fines can be as high as $25,000.
Consequences for drug crimes can last long after you serve your sentence and pay your fines. A conviction can impact your future employment and housing as well as any custodial rights you may have to your children.
Do You Need a Drug Lawyer in Philadelphia?
Schedule a consultation today. Our firm offers services in English, Russian, Ukrainian, and Spanish. We’ll help you understand your charges and your rights.