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What is the law on drug sales charges?

The sale of cocaine, heroin or meth are criminal charges in the U.S., however there are many variable factors when it comes to the severity of the charge. The seriousness of the charge most often depends on the type of drug involved; however, there are many other things that are taken into consideration. This blog will run through the general laws and sentences when it comes to charges against selling drugs.

Penalty group 1 drug charges

Cocaine, heroin and other drugs are classed as penalty group 1 drugs. The general sentences are often determined by the amount sold, as follows:

  • Less than one gram -- up to two years in jail and a fine of up to $10,000
  • One to four grams -- two to 20 years in jail and fine up to $10,000
  • Four to 200 grams -- five to 99 years and up to a $10,000 fine
  • 200 to 400 grams -- 10-99 years in prison and a fine of up to $100,000
  • 400 grams or more -- life in prison and a fine of up to $250,000 for the first offense

The severity of the sentence will largely be determined by whether you have any previous convictions in selling drugs.

How can intent to sell be proved?

The court does not necessarily need to have hard proof that you have sold or intend to sell the drugs found in your possession. Having a large enough quantity of the drug in your possession will be considered an indication that you had an intent to sell, which is always classed as a felony in regards to penalty group 1 drug charges.

Drug charges of any kind, but especially convictions of the intent to sell drugs, are extremely serious and it is important to seek trusted legal advice when having an evaluation of your case.

Source: FindLaw, "Drug dealing and drug sales charges," accessed July 13, 2017

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