Georgia is one of the strictest states in the US when it comes to the sentencing of drug offenses. There have been efforts to minimize the consequences of these strict laws, but with mandatory minimum sentences in place, it can be difficult.
This blog will serve as a brief overview of how the state of Georgia deals with drug laws when it comes to manufacturing drugs.
Intent to distribute
Evidence of manufacturing is not on its own enough — the courts will require evidence of an intent to distribute. Often, however, if a large quantity of a drug is being manufactured, it can serve as presumptive evidence that the manufacturing process had an intent to distribute.
Type and quantity of substance
The severity of the sentence also depends largely on the amount and the type of drug that was being manufactured. For example, 10 to 2,000 lbs of marijuana leads to a mandatory minimum sentence of five years and a fine of $100,000, while over 400g of methamphetamine/amphetamine leads to a mandatory minimum sentence of 25 years and a fine of $1 million. You can find a full break down of minimum mandatory sentences in Georgia here.
A common defense can be to try to prove that there was actually no intent to distribute the drug — there may not be concrete evidence for this. Other defenses can be if the accused is under 13 years of age, whereby he or she cannot be found guilty of a crime. Mental incapacity, claiming that the accused did not know he or she had the drug in his or her possession, a justification or an excuse are also possible.
If you have any questions about the mandatory minimum sentences for drug charges in Georgia, it is important to seek trusted legal guidance so that your individual situation can be assessed.
Source: Find Law, “Georgia Drug Manufacturing Laws,” accessed July 19, 2017