WHAT CONSTITUTES POSSESSION OF A CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE WITH THE INTENT TO SELL?

There are two elements that need to be proved in order for an individual to be charged with possession of a controlled substance with the intent to sell.

  1. The accused must have been in possession of the substance. This is through actual or constructive possession. Actual possession of a controlled substance includes carrying the drug in your pocket or any other part of your body. Constructive possession on the other hand is more difficult to prove. Constructive possession includes includes keeping drugs in your own personal apartment or storing them in the glove compartment of your car.

  2. The accused had the intent to sell the controlled substance. Intent is difficult to prove, but the prosecution has several ways of proving that the accused had the intent to sell the drugs. For example, if the accused keeps the drugs in separate baggies at home or if he/she carries the drugs with him but is not carrying drug paraphernalia nor is high.

PENALTIES FOR POSSESSION OF A CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE WITH INTENT TO SELL CHARGES:

 If the drug is classified under Schedule I or II:

 For a first offense, you are guilty of a category D felony and will be punished:

  • A minimum of 1 year and a maximum of 4 years in a state prison; and

  • A possible fine of no more than $5,000.

 For a second offense, you are guilty of a category C felony and will be punished:

  • A minimum of 1 year and a maximum of 5 years in a state prison; and

  • A possible fine of no more than $10,000.

 For a third or subsequent offense, you are guilty of a category B felony and will be punished:

  • A minimum of 3 years and a maximum of 15 years in a state prison; and

  • A possible fine of no more than $20,000.

 If the drug is classified under Schedule III, IV, or V:

 For a first or second offense, you are guilty of a category D felony and will be punished:

  • A minimum of 1 year and a maximum of 4 years in a state prison; and

  • A possible fine of no more than $10,000.

 For a third or subsequent offense, you are guilty of a category B felony and will be punished:

  • A minimum of 1 year and a maximum of 5 years in a state prison; and

  • A possible fine of no more than $10,000.

DEFENSES TO POSSESSION OF A CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE WITH INTENT TO SELL CHARGES:

  • You were not in possession of the drugs. For example, if the police find drugs in your house but they belonged to someone else and there was no way of you knowing that the drugs were there, the prosecutor cannot prove that you were in possession of the drugs which is one of the elements to this charge.

  • You did not have the intent. If you were carrying the drugs for your own personal use and did not have the mindset to sell them, the prosecution cannot prove one of the elements needed to convict you of this crime.  

Because every case is different, it is important that you contact an experienced Las Vegas criminal defense attorney who can help take care of your Possession of a Controlled Substance with Intent to Sell charge. Contact Adrian Lobo today at (702) 290-8998 to schedule a consultation.