What Happens When You Have a Controlled Substance

Posted November 14th, 2013 by .

Categories: Criminal Defense.

You’re driving along and you get pulled over for a traffic violation. Uh oh, there are drugs in the car and the police officer finds them. What will happen to you?

Well, various things could happen to you, depending on the type of substances you have. First, let’s define what is considered a controlled dangerous substance in New Jersey. Although all states have laws against the possession of controlled substances, each state defines and penalizes them differently. In New Jersey, controlled substances are divided into five different “schedules”:

  • Schedule I lists the most dangerous drugs, such as heroin, all that have a high probability of abuse and addiction. These drugs have no medical value.
  • Schedule II are substances that have a high potential for abuse and addiction but there is some medical value to them. But the medical value of these drugs usually have severe restrictions placed on them.
  • Schedule III are substances that abuse and addiction rates are not as high as those in Schedules I and II and is currently accepted as a form of medical treatment. Dependence on these drugs are not as high as those listed in the above schedules.
  • Schedule IV are substances that have a low potential for abuse and addiction and are currently used as a form of medical treatment. Again, the dependence levels are not as high as those drugs listed in above schedules.
  • Schedule V are substances that have a very low potential for abuse and addiction and are accepted as a form of medical treatment. The dependence levels of these drugs are very low.

For a complete list of the controlled substances and which schedule they fall under, click here.

The punishment ranges from the schedule to schedule. Usually, those caught with controlled substances that fall under schedule I-IV can receive a fine of up to $35,000 and/or at least three to five years in prison. If your substance falls under schedule V, your punishment is a fine of up to $15,000 and/or up to 18 months in prison. If you have marijuana and it’s not for legitimate medical purposes, then you can expect to receive a fine of up to $500.

Where you arrested for possession of a controlled substance? Let us help you today!

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