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North Carolina Criminal Defense Law Blog

The penalties for marijuana possession in North Carolina

North Carolina residents accused of marijuana possession will have the right to defend themselves against their charges in criminal court. Furthermore, the individuals will not be convicted or punished until -- and only if -- they are proved guilty of their marijuana crimes beyond a reasonable doubt.

That said, the way an individual decides to defend against a marijuana charge will depend on several factors. First, the defendant will need to have an in-depth understanding of the law, the requirements for conviction and the potential punishments associated with conviction. Second, the defendant will need to know what kind of evidence is being brought against him or her and whether a conviction is even likely to occur.

Federal marijuana distribution penalties

North Carolina residents accused of crossing the state border while distributing marijuana -- or those who are accused of distributing large amounts of marijuana on federal property -- could find themselves facing federal marijuana distribution charges. Since marijuana is categorized as a Class 1 drug under federal law, these charges come with the threat of very serious consequences.

Federal law dictates that individuals convicted of distributing marijuana will face the following penalties:

  • Up to 50 marijuana plants (or 50 kilograms of pot): Can be punished with a maximum of five years in prison and fines of as much as $250,000.
  • Between 50 and 99 marijuana plants (or between 50 and 99 kilograms of pot): The penalty could be as much as 20 years in prison and fines of as much as $1 million.
  • Between 100 and 999 marijuana plants (or between 100 and 999 kilograms of pot): The penalty could be as much as 40 years in prison and fines of between $2 and $5 million.
  • Over 999 marijuana plants (or over 999 kilograms of pot): The penalty could be as much as 10 years to life in prison and fines of between $4 and $10 million.

Driver pleads guilty following fatal DWI in Raleigh

There are no winners following a fatal drunk driving accident. First, an innocent victim has lost his or her life. Second, the victim's family members will be forced to deal with the emotional turmoil and financial difficulties of losing a loved one. Third, the drunk driver who caused the accident will face a lifetime of guilt, may need to spend years in prison and could be financially liable to the victim's family.

In a recent drunk driving accident case, a 25-year-old woman cried in front of a criminal court in Raleigh as she pleaded guilty to causing the death of a bicyclist last December. Police said that the woman was drunk when she struck a 56-year-old man who was riding his bike on Dec. 14 along Western Boulevard. Police also claimed that the woman fled the scene following the collision.

What if I was arrested for drugs that my doctor prescribed?

Prescription drugs are controlled substances, but -- because they serve a medical purpose -- North Carolina residents are legally permitted to take them and have them on their person if a doctor prescribes them. That said, what if you were carrying your prescription drugs, and they were not in the originally labeled bottle and a police officer arrested you for illegal drug possession?

This unfortunate circumstance happens frequently in North Carolina. Some prescription drugs are bought and sold on the black market illegally, and if you're in possession of one of these drugs -- even if it's for a legitimate purpose -- an officer of the law might mistake you for engaging in illegal activity.

This Detective Didn't Like Being Told No

"The dramatic video became another flashpoint in a national debate about police use of force and how officers treat civilians." - TIME

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"So, I have this," Alex Wubbels said, referring to a printout she's holding. Alex is a nurse in a Salt Lake City hospital. Her unconscious patient lay on a bed nearby. The printout reads: Obtaining Blood Samples for Police Enforcement from Patients Suspected to be Under the Influence. For the better part of an hour, Detective Jeff Payne has tried to convince Alex that she should just let him draw her patient's blood.

Detective Payne evidently doesn't like being told no.

What's the federal mandatory minimum penalty for LSD trafficking?

The United States federal government has classified the hallucinogenic drug lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) as a Schedule 1 narcotic. That means that the federal government considers it to be one of the most dangerous types of drugs. As such, being convicted of trafficking LSD will come with serious mandatory punishments.

If you are convicted of manufacturing, distributing or possessing one gram of LSD or more with the intention to distribute, the federal mandatory penalties are as follows:

  • First offense not resulting in death or serious injury: 5 years in prison
  • First offense resulting in death or serious injury: 20 years in prison
  • Second offense not resulting in death or serious injury: 10 years in prison
  • Second offense resulting in death or serious injury: Life in prison

Stay safe and avoid boating under the influence charges

A boating under the influence charge is not that different from a driving under the influence charge. Both charges can result in the loss of your driver's license, both charges could end in your spending time in jail depending on the circumstances, and both charges could leave you with a mark on your criminal history and numerous financial penalties and other financial consequences.

To avoid getting in trouble with the law related to a boating under the influence charge, you may want to keep the following in mind:

What are the most common drug charges?

At the Roberts Law Group, we represent North Carolina residents in their criminal proceedings. We regularly defend individuals against allegations involving a wide variety of crimes, but some of the most common allegations we see involve illegal drugs. In addition, in the category of drug crimes, we tend to see the same three allegations relating to drugs over and over again.

Here are the three most common drug charges we defend North Carolina residents against:

  • Drug possession allegations: It's illegal to possess certain substances like marijuana, cocaine and methamphetamine. It's also illegal to possess prescription medications without a prescription.
  • Drug sales allegations: North Carolina residents are in violation of the law whenever they are selling a controlled substance. Police often create sting operations to gather proof and evidence against someone they suspect of selling drugs. They might send an undercover officer to meet a suspected drug dealer. If the alleged drug dealer agrees to sell drugs and makes a transaction, then he or she could get arrested and accused.
  • Driving while intoxicated by a controlled substance allegations: Most people accused of driving while intoxicated are intoxicated by alcohol. However, some are intoxicated by a controlled substance. It can be more difficult for police to prove that someone was high on drugs, but if an individual exhibits signs of intoxication during a traffic stop and police find him or her in possession of drugs, it could result in an arrest and charges.

Man accused of federal fraud after purchasing foreclosed home

According to federal officials, a man from Wake Forest generated over $1 million in fraudulent profits while purchasing foreclosed homes. The accused man allegedly bought the foreclosed homes illegally.

The man's actions first fell under scrutiny when neighbors observed him drilling through the locks of a foreclosed home in their neighborhood. Police came out to investigate, arrested him, but then dropped the charges after the man showed that he was the owner of the property, valued at over $300,000. He bought the property after the homeowners' association foreclosed on the home due to nonpayment of dues. The man successfully showed that his actions relating to the property were lawful.

Woman arrested for DWI after her child dies in tragic crash

A 23-month-old toddler is dead following a tragic road rage incident along Route 401, not far from Louisburg. The accident happened on a recent Friday at approximately 9:30 a.m. Witnesses report that the women driving their vehicles were gesticulating aggressively at each other just prior to the accident.

The two cars were driving alongside one another when the first driver maneuvered in front of the other, resulting in the collision. The second driver, who had children in her car, lost control of her vehicle, veered across the center line and collided with a third vehicle. The third vehicle drove off the road. The second vehicle flipped upside down into the bottom of a creek.

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