Drug laws, by nature, can get very tough. Arizona, however, has arguably tougher drug laws than most states. Should you find yourself at the receiving end of a drug-related charge in, Arizona, you will need to get in touch with a Phoenix drug crimes attorney to represent you for the duration of the entire legal process.
Any drug-related offense brings with it a plethora of repercussions that no one would ever want in their lives. A criminal drug offense can get quite overwhelming, and its impact on your life, liberty, reputation, and future can be serious and long-lasting. The only one who can help with your defense is a skilled and experienced Phoenix drug crimes lawyer. The attorneys at Lane, Hupp, & Crowley, PLC have handled numerous drug crimes cases in Arizona and can provide the representation you need to protect your rights and develop a strong defense.
Drug laws in Arizona
Unlike many states that have recently lessened penalties for drug offenses, Arizona law still provides harsh penalties and lengthy sentences for most drug crimes and drug offenses. For example, the possession of any “useable” (no matter how small) amount of illegal drugs is considered a felony, and possession of amounts above certain thresholds set by law requires a mandatory prison sentence regardless of whether it is someone’s first offense or not.
Most drug crimes and drug offenses in Arizona are either considered personal possession crimes or possession for sale crimes (also called drug sales and drug trafficking cases).
Drug possession in Arizona
The personal possession of drugs is still considered a felony in Arizona, and the level of felony offense you could be facing depends on the type of drug possessed. Arizona has different drug crimes for possession of cannabis, for which you are going to need the services of the most capable marijuana attorney Arizona can provide. The charges will also be different for possession of dangerous drugs and possession of narcotic drugs. For example, possessing cocaine or heroin would be considered possession of narcotic drugs, while possessing MDMA or methamphetamine would be considered possession of dangerous drugs. The drug possession lawyers at Lane, Hupp, & Crowley, PLC have successfully handled numerous drug crimes and drug possession cases, whether they be possession of marijuana, possession of narcotic drugs, or possession of dangerous drugs.
Most drug possession cases are eligible for special sentencing based under A.R.S. § 13-901.01 as long as it is a personal possession case (not drug sales or trafficking) and does not involve methamphetamine. This law is known as “proposition 200 sentencing” and requires the sentencing judge to order a period of probation at the time of sentencing for a first or second conviction for drug possession.
Possession of Drug Paraphernalia
In Arizona, possessing tools or instruments that are used to ingest, prepare, plant, or do anything related to drugs is also illegal. It’s classified as a class 6 felony, the lowest form of a felony charge. The consequences of a class 6 felony, however, are still rather severe. A conviction on a class 6 felony possession of drug paraphernalia charge can get you two years in prison, that is, if you have never been convicted of any crime before. For those with a prior criminal conviction, a prison sentence of up to six years can be expected.
Drug sales and drug trafficking
In Arizona, if you are found in possession of large quantities of drugs, police and prosecutors will argue that the drugs found in your possession are for sale or distribution, even if they were for personal use. And regardless of whether the drugs were for personal consumption or for sale, possessing certain amounts of drugs will expose you to conviction for higher level felonies and mandatory prison sentences. For example, if the amount found in your possession is at or exceeds what Arizona law refers to as a “threshold amount,” a conviction will result in a mandatory prison sentence. The “threshold amount” for each drug under Arizona law is as follows:
- 2 pounds of marijuana
- 9 grams of cocaine
- 1 gram of heroin
- 4 grams or 50 milliliters of PCP
- 9 grams of methamphetamine
- 9 grams of amphetamine
What to Do If You Are Charged with a Drug Offense
Should police arrest you for any of the drug offenses mentioned above, the most important thing you can do is to exercise your right to remain silent as well as your right to counsel. Contact the most capable drug crimes attorney Phoenix has to offer, and you don’t have to look any further than Lane, Hupp, & Crowley, PLC to do that.
Our other Arizona criminal defense matters we handle include: