Every year, thousands of Americans are arrested for crimes related to illegal drugs, known as controlled substances. A controlled substance charge can come with serious ramifications, including a misdemeanor or felony conviction on your criminal record, substantial jail time, a lengthy term of probation, and termination of employment. If you have been arrested on a controlled substance charge, it is paramount to contact a criminal defense attorney as soon as possible.
The Severity of Controlled Substance Charges in Texas
When it comes to controlled substance charges in the state of Texas, the severity of the charges depends on the type of drug, the amount of the drug, and the intent of the possessor. For instance, someone possessing drugs that fall within Penalty Group 1 (such as heroin), will not face the same consequences as someone possessing a Group 2 drug (such as PCP).
Prosecutors typically use the amount of the substance that a person possesses, along with other factors, when determining the intent of the possessor. Thus, charges increase in severity as the amount of narcotics increase.
Looking specifically at Penalty Group 1 drugs, the Texas Penal Code provides that a person possessing less than one gram will face a state jail felony. Possession of between one and four grams is a third degree felony, a second degree for between four and 200 grams, and a first degree felony for 200 to 400 grams. However, manufacturing or possessing these drugs with intent to deliver can lead to increased charges, and for larger amounts, a person may face prison sentences of at least 10 years to life.
Controlled substance charges should be taken very seriously. Possession of just five grams of a Penalty Group 1 drug, a second degree felony, can be punished by between two and 20 years in prison. Possessing less than four grams could lead to a sentence of up to 10 years, as well as fines of up to $10,000. These harsh sentences demonstrate the critical importance of having quality legal representation.
Contact a Houston Drug Crimes Defense Lawyer
When facing a controlled substance charge, hiring a skilled criminal defense lawyer can make the ultimate difference in fighting these charges or reducing the potential penalties you may face. Attorney Nathaniel Pitoniak has years of experience aggressively representing clients facing criminal charges. From marijuana to methamphetamine, any controlled substance charge can lead to monumental changes in your life, and it is essential to have a dedicated advocate fighting for your rights. To set up a free consultation with a knowledgeable Harris County criminal defense attorney, call us today at 832-315-6283.