- Penalty Group 2-A – Artificial chemical compounds that mimic cannabinoids (like K2 and Spice) fall under Penalty Group 2-A. Those found possessing less than two ounces will face a Class B misdemeanor. Possession of 2 to 4 ounces of a PG 2-A drug will be charged as a Class A misdemeanor. Any amount above 4 ounces will result in felony charges. While smaller amounts carry a punishment of up to 1 year in jail, large amounts can result in 5 to 99 years in prison and a maximum fine of $50,000.
- Penalty Group 3 – This group is made up of opiates and opioids that do not fall under Penalty Group 1, including methylphenidate (Ritalin), benzodiazepines, Valium, anabolic steroids, and a range of prescription drugs that have either a depressant or stimulus effect. Possession of a small amount of a PG 3 substance is charged as a misdemeanor, punishable by up to 1 year in jail and a $4,000 fine. Possession of 28 grams or more is a felony. Those found with more than 400 grams of a PG 3 substance in their possession could face up to 99 years in prison and a max fine of $50,000.
- Penalty Group 4 – Many prescription medications and the chemical compounds that make up those medications fall under Penalty Group 4. Possession of less than 28 grams of a PG 4 drug is a Class B misdemeanor, punishable by up to 180 days in jail and a fine of $2,000. If the amount is over 28 grams, the offender will face felony charges. Those who possess more than 400 grams could go to prison for 5 to 99 years and be required to pay a fine of up to $50,000.
Can you get probation for a felony drug charge in Texas?
In Texas, you can get probation for a felony drug charge. If you have never been convicted of a felony before, then Texas law mandates that the Judge must give you probation. In addition, even if you have been arrested for a felony drug charge before and even if you have a previous 12.44a, the Judge still must give you probation even if the State does not want to agree. If you are arrested for a state jail felony drug charge, then the normal range of punishment is a minimum of 6 months and a maximum of 2 years in the State Jail and up to a $10,000 fine. You may also be eligible for community supervision (probation), which requires a minimum 2 year and a maximum 5 year probation sentence. If you have been arrested on a state jail drug possession charge (the most common type of felony drug charge in Texas), then it’s important to know that probation is the preferred outcome under the law. Even when you have a criminal history and may have been arrested in the past for a felony drug charge, as long as you were never convicted, then the Court HAS to give you probation under the law.
Defenses Against Drug Crimes in Texas
There are multiple legal defenses that can be used against drug crimes in the state of Texas; these can include the following:
- Illegal search and seizure: If law enforcement officers acquire evidence through an illegal search or seizure, that evidence may be excluded from court.
- Lack of knowledge or intent: If the defendant was unaware that the substance was illegal or that they did not have intentions to commit a crime, they may be able to avoid conviction.
- Entrapment: If law enforcement officers induced the defendant to commit a crime they would not have committed on their own, this could be entrapment and could lead to charges being dropped.
- Duress or coercion: The defendant may be able to use duress or coercion as a defense if they can prove they were forced or threatened into committing the crime.
- Insufficient evidence: Charges may be dismissed if the prosecution cannot provide proof beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant committed the crime.
- Miranda rights violations: If law enforcement officers fail to read the defendant their Miranda rights, any statement that was made by the defendant may be excluded from court.
The effectiveness of these defenses will be dependent on the particular circumstances surrounding the case. If you are being faced with charges for a drug crime, seek the legal advice of drug crime lawyer William Underwood, who can build a strong defense strategy on your behalf.
Contact Our Drug Crimes Lawyer Today
The penalties for drug offenses can ruin a person’s life. With so much at stake, you need an aggressive drug crimes lawyer who has the knowledge and experience to fight for your rights. When you go with Underwood & Associates, you will benefit from working with a smart, successful McKinney drug crime lawyer who knows the ropes and understands the science, and who will do what it takes to obtain the best results possible in your case.
Contact Underwood & Associates today to get started on your defense with our McKinney drug crimes attorney.
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