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Drug Possession
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West New York Lawyers

New Jersey Drug Possession Attorneys

Experienced New Jersey Drug Possession Defense Lawyer

Drug possession charges are some of the most common criminal charges in New Jersey. However, a conviction can have a lasting impact on your personal and professional life. Fortunately, you are innocent until proven guilty, and the prosecution must prove all elements of the crime beyond a reasonable doubt.

Speak with our New Jersey drug possession lawyer at Blanch Legal Firm, P.C. today by contacting us online or calling (201) 257-5388 to schedule a free consultation.

What Is Drug Possession in New Jersey?

In New Jersey, it is illegal to possess controlled dangerous substances (CDS) without a valid prescription. CDS includes illegal drugs as well as prescription medications that are not prescribed to you.

Common drugs involved in drug possession charges include:

  • Marijuana
  • Cocaine
  • Heroin
  • Prescription medications
  • Ecstasy
  • Methamphetamine
  • LSD
  • Mushrooms

Drug possession charges can be filed as a disorderly persons offense or an indictable offense, depending on the type and amount of the drug. A disorderly persons offense is similar to a misdemeanor, while an indictable offense is similar to a felony.

Drug possession charges can be filed for:

  • Actual possession: The drugs were found on your person or within your immediate control.
  • Constructive possession: The drugs were found in a location that you had control over, such as your home or car.

Drug possession charges can be filed against multiple people if the drugs are found in a location that is accessible to more than one person. In these cases, the prosecution will need to prove that you had knowledge of the drugs and control over them.

What Are the Penalties for Drug Possession in New Jersey?

Penalties for drug possession in New Jersey depend on the type and amount of the drug, as well as other factors, such as your criminal history.

The penalties for drug possession in New Jersey include:

  • Disorderly persons offense: Up to 6 months in jail, up to $1,000 in fines, and suspension of your driver's license for at least 6 months
  • Indictable offense, 4th degree: Up to 18 months in prison, up to $10,000 in fines, and suspension of your driver's license for at least 6 months
  • Indictable offense, 3rd degree: 3 to 5 years in prison, up to $35,000 in fines, and suspension of your driver's license for at least 6 months
  • Indictable offense, 2nd degree: 5 to 10 years in prison, up to $150,000 in fines, and suspension of your driver's license for at least 6 months
  • Indictable offense, 1st degree: 10 to 20 years in prison, up to $500,000 in fines, and suspension of your driver's license for at least 6 months

If you are convicted of a disorderly persons offense for drug possession, you may be eligible for a conditional discharge. A conditional discharge is a type of probation program that allows you to avoid jail time and a conviction on your record.

To qualify for a conditional discharge, you must:

  • Not have any prior convictions for a drug offense
  • Not have been previously granted a conditional discharge or pretrial intervention
  • Not be charged with distributing drugs or possessing drugs with the intent to distribute

If you successfully complete the probation program, the charges against you will be dismissed.

Defending Against Drug Possession Charges

Being charged with drug possession does not mean you will be convicted. Our drug possession lawyer in New Jersey can help you fight the charges.

Common defenses against drug possession charges include:

  • Unlawful search and seizure: The drugs were found as a result of an illegal search and seizure. All evidence obtained through an illegal search and seizure will be inadmissible in court.
  • Lack of possession: You did not have control over the drugs. For example, the drugs were found in a shared car or home.
  • Unknowing possession: You did not know the drugs were in your possession. For example, the drugs were planted on you.
  • Valid prescription: You had a valid prescription for the drugs.

Our drug possession lawyer in New Jersey will carefully review the evidence against you to determine the best defense strategy.

Can I Get My Drug Possession Conviction Expunged?

In New Jersey, you may be eligible for an expungement if you have been convicted of a drug possession offense. An expungement is a legal process that seals your criminal record from public view, which means that most employers, landlords, and others will not be able to see your conviction.

However, certain government agencies and law enforcement agencies will still be able to see your conviction.

To be eligible for an expungement, you must meet the following requirements:

  • You have completed all of the terms of your sentence, including probation and parole
  • You have not been convicted of any other crimes
  • You have not been convicted of any other disorderly persons offenses

You must also wait a certain amount of time before you can apply for an expungement. The waiting period depends on the type of offense and the sentence you received.

For example, if you were convicted of a disorderly persons offense, you must wait 5 years from the date of your conviction before you can apply for an expungement. If you were convicted of an indictable offense, you must wait

Speak with our New Jersey drug possession lawyer at Blanch Legal Firm, P.C. today by contacting us online or calling (201) 257-5388 to schedule a free consultation.

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