Philadelphia Marijuana Charges
Have you been arrested for the possession, sale, manufacture, or trafficking of marijuana? According to both state and federal law, marijuana is classified as a Schedule I substance. The state of Pennsylvania has criminalized even the smallest possession of marijuana, which means that if convicted, a person could be facing jail time, heavy fines, and a permanent criminal record. This could negatively affect employment and housing opportunities. If you have been arrested for possession of marijuana or distributing marijuana, you should speak with an experienced criminal attorney.
With years of experience representing defendants in misdemeanor and felony drug cases, Philadelphia marijuana defense lawyer Lloyd Long is ready to fight for you. Our firm has many years of experience handling criminal cases involving controlled substances, and will ensure you receive the aggressive defense you deserve. To schedule your free consultation, call the Law Offices of Lloyd Long at (215) 302-0171, or contact us online.
Types of Marijuana Offenses
Philadelphia marijuana possession defense attorney Lloyd Long represents clients facing any of the following marijuana charges in Pennsylvania:
- Possession of marijuana, including possession for personal use
- Felony possession of marijuana
- Cultivation of marijuana
- Distribution of marijuana
- Trafficking marijuana
- Possession or use of drug paraphernalia
- Driving under the influence of marijuana
This is not a comprehensive guide about how to tackle marijuana offenses. If you are facing a marijuana offense, you should speak with an experienced attorney right away.
Philadelphia Marijuana Laws
The city of Philadelphia has recently taken several proactive steps to decriminalize the possession and use of marijuana. These measures are having a profound effect on the number of arrests for marijuana, as well as the severity of the consequences for marijuana possession.
Under Philadelphia’s Small Amount of Marijuana Program (SAM):
- Individuals caught with less than 30 grams of marijuana must pay a $25 fine.
- Individuals cited for public marijuana use must either pay a $100 fine or perform up to nine hours of community service.
Individuals who pay the fine or complete the community service may have their charges dismissed and expunged by the District Attorney. If an individual failed to pay the fine or attend community service, they still have an opportunity to appear in Philadelphia’s Municipal Court.
Getting convicted for possession of a small amount of marijuana can carry a sentence of up to 30 days in jail and includes the imposition of fines and court costs. A small amount of marijuana conviction will also lead to an automatic six-month driver’s license suspension by PennDOT. This is true even if an individual was not driving when the marijuana possession arrest occurred.
It is important to remember that the decriminalization of marijuana does not mean that marijuana is legal. State law in Pennsylvania still criminalizes marijuana, and you can be arrested and prosecuted for the following offenses:
- Possessing 30 grams of marijuana or more
- Selling, intending to sell, and distributing marijuana
- Driving while under the influence of marijuana (marijuana DUI/DWI)
- Growing marijuana plants (cannabis)
- Possessing marijuana while on probation
- Other crimes associated with marijuana that a police officer has probable cause to believe you committed
PA Marijuana Penalties
The consequences of a marijuana crime conviction become progressively more severe depending on circumstances such as the amount of marijuana involved, whether trafficking is involved, whether a minor or the use of a vehicle was involved, and so forth.
In Pennsylvania, possession of more than 30 grams of marijuana carries a sentence of up to one year and a maximum fine of $5,000. Alternatively, possessing 30 grams of marijuana or more, with an intent to sell, is a felony carrying a sentence of up to five years and a fine of up to $15,000.
Driving under the influence of marijuana carries a maximum sentence of up to six months, with a maximum fine of $5,000. These penalties increase for second and third-time offenders. Additionally, the growth of even one marijuana plant in Pennsylvania is a felony. This felony carries a sentence of up to five years and a maximum of $15,000 in fines.
Marijuana use can also be considered a violation of probation. Marijuana use may also be used against you in other legal proceedings, such as a child custody case. Moreover, marijuana possession, use, and distribution is also still considered illegal by the federal government, which has made no serious attempts to decriminalize or legalize marijuana.
Hire a Philadelphia Marijuana Lawyer if Charged with Possession or Distribution
Marijuana distribution lawyer Lloyd Long is committed to providing effective defense strategies to protect his clients’ rights. With years of legal experience, he has served numerous residents of Philadelphia and would be proud to serve you in your case. Our firm’s results speak for themselves. To schedule your free, confidential consultation concerning a marijuana-related arrest, criminal charge, or criminal investigation, call (215) 302-0171 today.