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Drug crimes are a serious matter that state governments strictly enforce with harsh consequences. In the past, the social stigma associated with drug use was extremely severe. Over time, the public has slightly warmed to the unique circumstances that surround many drug use cases. However, the legal ramifications with a drug possession conviction still have the potential to change a person’s life drastically.
If you have been charged with a drug possession offense, it is in your best interest to consult with an experienced drug possession lawyer in Texas. At Blanchard & Thomas, you can find an experienced criminal defense team of attorneys who will zealously advocate for your legal rights and interests.
Under Texas law, it is a crime to knowingly possess a dangerous drug or controlled substance. The legal framework for drug crimes is comprehensive, often involving provisions of the Texas Health & Safety Code, in addition to provisions of the Texas Penal Code. The penalty for possession of a dangerous drug or controlled substance is divided into different categories, depending on the amount of the substance the defendant had in their possession.
Texas Family Code §§ 481.102-403 provides a comprehensive list of substances that are punishable under Penalty Group 1 and Penalty Group 2 if the defendant knowingly possessed one of them. Possession under this group is punishable as a felony.
Penalty Group 1 drugs include opiates, opium derivatives, and methamphetamines. Examples of Penalty Group 2 drugs are hallucinogens and MDMA (also known as “ecstasy” or “molly.”)
Penalties for possession of substances listed in Groups 1 & 2 are:
If the defendant had 400 grams or more of a Penalty Group 1 or 2 substance, they can face life in prison and up to $100,000 in criminal fines.
Texas Family Code § 481.104 prohibits the possession of various substances that have a potential for abuse or used in the manufacturing process of certain substances. These Penalty Group 3 drugs include certain drugs that are considered “stimulants” and “depressants” regarding their effect on the central nervous system.
Under, Texas Family Code § 481.105 it is a crime to possess a Penalty Group 4 substance, which consists of a “compound, mixture, or preparation” containing narcotic drugs such as codeine in certain amounts measured in milliliters per 100 grams.
The punishments for Penalty Group 3 & 4 drugs are organized as follows:
To secure a successful conviction of a drug possession offense, the state must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant knowingly exercised care, custody, control, or management over a controlled substance with the knowledge that it was contraband. In many cases, there are arguments and strategies that serve as a complete defense against a conviction, or could lead to a reduced sentence.
At Blanchard & Thomas, we have experience with the following defenses:
Furthermore, the Texas Drug Court program is a possible option for defendants who suffer from addiction and substance abuse. The Drug Court program helps people receive much-needed rehabilitative treatment and therapy and can last from anywhere between one year to eighteen months. Successful completion of a pre-trial program can result in dropped charges.
Depending on the circumstances of your case, a successful conviction for drug possession can turn your life upside down. Given the stakes involved in drug possession crimes, it is crucial for you to find effective legal representation to ensure the stigma associated with drugs does not compromise the judicial integrity of your trial. At Blanchard & Thomas, we are passionate about protecting the due process rights of criminal defendants.
Contact Blanchard & Thomas, PLLC at (866) 219-6119. Our Texas criminal defense attorneys are ready to help.