Possession of Cocaine
Although the drug has some legitimate medical uses, possession of even “trace” amounts of cocaine without a valid prescription or order form from a practitioner can subject you to extremely serious penalties in New Jersey. If you are facing a charge of Possession of Cocaine, you could be looking at incarceration and a significant fine. Accordingly, to avoid potential life changing consequences, it is important that you hire a criminal defense attorney who has experience in dealing with drug possession cases. The Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall has a legal defense team of seven (7) lawyers, many of whom, are former prosecutors, who have over 100 years of combined experience in handling criminal matters. Our office represents defendants throughout Mercer County and surrounding areas including East Windsor, Ewing, Hamilton, Hightstown, Hopewell Township, Lawrenceville, Princeton, Robbinsville, Trenton and West Windsor. To speak with a knowledgeable attorney to discuss your situation, contact our Princeton office to today at (609) 683-8102.Possession of CDS (Cocaine) – N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10:
a. It is unlawful for any person, knowingly or purposely, to obtain, or to possess, actually or constructively, a controlled dangerous substance (CDS) or controlled substance analog, unless the substance was obtained directly, or pursuant to a valid prescription or order form from a practitioner, while acting in the course of his professional practice, or except as otherwise authorized by P.L.1970, c.226. Any person who violates this section with respect to:
(1) A controlled dangerous substance (CDS), or its analog, classified in Schedule I, II, III or IV other than those specifically covered in this section, is guilty of a crime of the third degree except that, notwithstanding the provisions of subsection b. of N.J.S.A. 2C:43-3, a fine of up to $ 35,000.00 may be imposed;Fines and Penalties:
In the late 1970s, powder cocaine emerged as a fashionable new drug for entertainers and businesspeople. In the mid-1980s, it came to the masses of Trenton in a form called “crack,” which is powder cocaine that is boiled in water until all the cutting agents are taken away in the steam and then dried out so it can be smoked.
When it comes to straight possession, New Jersey law does not differentiate between powder cocaine and “crack” cocaine. Regardless of what form it is in, it is considered to be a Schedule II Controlled Dangerous Substance (CDS) meaning that although it can be prescribed by a doctor for a legitimate medical use, it has a potential for abuse. Accordingly, possession of cocaine, regardless of the amount possessed, is a 3rd degree crime, that will expose you to: 3 – 5 years in the New Jersey State Prison; a fine of $35,000.00; a 6-month to a 2-year license suspension; $50.00 Victim of Crime Compensation Assessment (VCCA); $75.00 Safe Neighborhood Services Fund (SNSF); $1,000.00 Drug Enforcement and Demand Reduction (DEDR); $50.00 forensic laboratory fee; $30.00 Law Enforcement Officers Training and Equipment Fund (LEOTF); and court costs. Furthermore, a conviction for cocaine possession will result in a permanent criminal record.
Since cocaine possession is an indictable crime or “felony,” the case will be reviewed by the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office and handled at the Superior Court. Depending on the amount of cocaine possessed and/or the nature and circumstances of the investigation leading up to your arrest, you may be facing additional charges, such as Possession of CDS with the Intent to Distribute and/or school zone and public park/public housing facility charges, which carry even more severe penalties such as mandatory imprisonment.Ewing NJ Cocaine Possession Defense Attorneys
If this is your first criminal charge and if, based on our professional opinion, it is appropriate, our lawyers will work with county prosecutor assigned to your case to help secure an acceptance into the Pre-Trial Intervention (PTI) program. Specifically, we will point out your amenability to correction and responsiveness to rehabilitation and we will be prepared to argue that any denial of your acceptance into PTI is a patent and gross abuse of discretion. Upon successful completion of PTI, the criminal charge will be dismissed and you will avoid a criminal conviction on your permanent record.
The consequences of a conviction for cocaine possession can be life altering. To avoid stiff penalties and potential jail time, it is important to, at the very least, discuss your situation with legal counsel. If you find yourself facing a cocaine-related charge contact our Princeton Office at (609) 683-8102 for a free consultation with one of our seasoned defense attorneys.