Is it a Crime to Possess for Sale of Controlled Substance?
Yes, under Health and Safety Code 11351, it is considered a felony in the state of California to possess controlled substances with the intent to sell them.
What is Considered a Controlled Substance Under Health and Safety Code 11351?
For purposes of Health and Safety Code 11351, a controlled substance is any drug or chemical whose manufacturing, possession, and use are regulated by the government under the Controlled Substances Act.
What is the Controlled Substance Act?
The Controlled Substance Act is a federal statute that enables the federal government to regulate the manufacturing, importation, possession, use, and distribution of certain substances. Additionally, controlled substances are placed under one of five schedules under this act. The placement is based on the following:
- Substance’s medical use;
- Substance’s potential for abuse;
- Substance’s safety; and
- Substance’s dependence liability
What Are Examples of Controlled Substances for Purposes of Health and Safety Code 11351?
Controlled substances for purposes of Health and Safety Code 11351 include the following:
- Hydro codeine
Keep in mind that possession of controlled substances such as marijuana and methamphetamine for purposes of sale are considered separate offenses not covered under Health and Safety Code 11351.
What is Considered “Possession” Under Health and Safety Code 11351?
For purposes of Health and Safety Code 11351, possession is established when an individual has direct and/or immediate control over the controlled substance. Typically, this is established when the individual possesses the controlled substance if they are carrying it on them. Possession can also be established if an individual has personal control over the substance such that the controlled substance was found near or around an area that the individual exercises control over, such as in the individual’s car or garage.
How is Intent to Sell Established Under Health and Safety Code 11351?
Under Health and Safety Code 11351, intent to sell can be established by showing the following:
- The amount of the controlled substance is greater than the amount one individual would typically use;
- The controlled substance has been found in separated baggies;
- The controlled substance was found near or next to a weighing mechanism such as a scale; or
- The location of the controlled substance is frequently visited by many individuals who temporarily come in and go out of the establishment
What are the Penalties Associated with Violating Health and Safety Code 11351?
As mentioned above, violating Health and Safety Code 11351 is considered a felony. Penalties include the following:
- Up to one year in county jail and probation; or
- Two, three, or four years in county jail; or
- Be placed on formal probation
- Pay fines of up to $20,000
Los Angeles Criminal Defense Attorney
If you or someone you know has been charged with Health and Safety Code 11351, we invite you contact KAASS LAW today at (310) 943-1171 to speak to our criminal defense attorney for a free consultation.