Turning to a Strong Santa Clarita Drug Crime Attorneys
Methamphetamine goes by many different names on the street—meth, speed, crystal, glass and the list goes on. Regardless of the name being used, methamphetamine can lead to very serious consequences for a person who is accused of committing a crime involving this substance. A conviction for a methamphetamine-related offense can result in jail time, prison time and expensive fines. If you were accused of illegally possessing, selling, transporting or committing some other act in relation to this drug, you should not try to handle your charges alone. By consulting with a Santa Clarita criminal defense lawyer from the Law Offices of David M. Wallin, you might be able to avoid a conviction, or at least get your charges or penalties reduced. Our lawyers are highly knowledgeable about California's drug crime laws and are prepared to provide you with the information and cutting-edge defense you are looking for.
The state of California classifies methamphetamine as a Schedule II controlled substance, meaning it is one of the many types of drugs that are considered to have high potential for abuse and addiction. These types of drugs have very limited accepted medical use in the United States. This odorless, white powder is a stimulant that affects the central nervous system, and it is closely related to amphetamine, according to the National Institute on Drug Abuse.
Understanding the Potential Penalties
Methamphetamine charges can be classified as either misdemeanors or felonies. The penalty severity a person can receive for a methamphetamine-related conviction depends on various factors, such as the nature of the crime, the amount of the drug, the offender's criminal history and the type of location where the offense occurred.
Below is a basic outline of how drug crimes are punished in the state of California (including drug crimes involving methamphetamine):
- Possessing meth—incarceration in jail for up to one year or imprisonment for 16 months to three years
- Possessing meth with the intent to sell—imprisonment for 16 months or for 2 to 3 years
- Transporting and distributing meth—imprisonment for 3 to 5 years
- Or 3, 6 or 9 years when the drug was transported across county lines)
- Manufacturing meth—imprisonment for 3, 5 or 7 years
In addition to jail and prison time, individuals convicted of these offenses can also receive thousands of dollars in fines, with fine amounts reaching $50,000 for those accused of manufacturing methamphetamines. Previous convictions for similar crimes can serve as aggravating factors in defendants' sentencing—meaning their sentences can be enhanced. For example, enhancements can be given for manufacturing large amounts of methamphetamines (particularly in "meth lab" operations). The length of time added to a sentence through the enhancement depends on the amount of the drug that was involved. Another enhancement for meth manufacturing charges results when the manufacturing operations occurred in a structure where a minor age 16 or under resided or was present. in the crime.
Sentencing enhancements can also be given to adults who are found guilty of distributing methamphetamine to minors or for committing their drug offenses on or near schools. To learn more about your specific charges and what types of enhancements you might be subject to, you should consult with a knowledgeable attorney.
Many Possible Defenses
There are a number of different defenses that can be used in cases that involve methamphetamine charges. It could be possible to show that the drugs were not actually in the defendant's control or possession, or that the defendant was not aware of the presence of the drugs. Or, it could be a possibility to show that the evidence was collected by law enforcement in an unlawful manner, such as through an unlawful search or seizure. This type of finding could potentially lead to you getting your charges dropped or dismissed.
In certain situations, it is in the defendant's best interest to seek a reduction of charges or treatment through a drug diversion program, which is usually given in place of imprisonment. A drug diversion program can also sometimes lead to charges being dismissed in the future when the program is successfully completed. We at the Law Offices of David M. Wall are dedicated to helping you find the defense strategies that best meet your needs.
Let us help you challenge your methamphetamine charges. Contact us today!
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