Sunday, October 26th, 2014

Possession of a Controlled Substance

Degrees of Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance.

First Degree Drug Possession

A person is guilty of a Minnesota first degree criminal possession charge if the person possesses:
25 grams or more of cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, or any combination of the three
500 grams or more of a narcotic drug other than cocaine, heroin, or methamphetamine
500 grams (or dosage units) or more of amphetamine, phencyclidine, or hallucinogenic drugs
100 kilograms or more of marijuana or Tetrahydrocannabinols

Second Degree Drug Possession

In order to be found guilty of a second degree Minnesota controlled substance crime a person must unlawfully possess:
Six grams or more of cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, or any combination of the three
50 grams or more of a narcotic drug other than cocaine, heroin, or methamphetamine
50 grams (or 100 dosage units) or more of amphetamine, phencyclidine, or a hallucinogen
50 kilograms or more of marijuana or Tetrahydrocannabinols

Third Degree Drug Possession

A person is guilty of a third degree controlled substance violation if the person possesses:

Three grams or more of cocaine, heroin, or methamphetamine
10 grams or more of a narcotic drug other than cocaine, heroin, or methamphetamine
50 or more units of a narcotic drug
Any amount of a Schedule I or II narcotic drug or five or more dosage units of lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), methylenedioxy amphetamine, or methylenedioxy-methamphetamine in a school zone, park, public housing zone, or drug treatment facility
10 kilograms or more of marijuana or Tetrahydrocannabinols
Methamphetamine or amphetamine in a school zone, park, public housing zone, or drug treatment facility

Fourth Degree Drug Possession

In order to be convicted of a Minnesota fourth degree controlled substance violation a person must unlawfully possess:

10 or more dosage units of phencyclidine or hallucinogen
A controlled substance classified in Schedule I, II, or III, except marijuana or Tetrahydrocannabinols, with the intent to sell it

Fifth Degree Drug Possession

A person is guilty of a controlled substance crime in the fifth degree if the person:

Unlawfully possesses a controlled substance classified in Schedule I, II, III, or IV, except a small amount of marijuana (42.5 grams or less)
Procures, attempts to procure, possesses, or has control over a controlled substance by any of the following means: Fraud, deceit, misrepresentation, or subterfuge
Adopting a false name or giving false credit
Falsely assuming the title of, or falsely representing any person to be a manufacturer, wholesaler, pharmacist, physician, doctor of osteopathy licensed to practice medicine, dentist, podiatrist, veterinarian, or other authorized person for the purpose of obtaining a controlled substance.

Possession of a Small Amount of Marijuana

Contrary to popular belief, it is not legal to possess a small amount of marijuana (42.5 grams or less). Minnesota has simply “decriminalized” the offense. This offense often is punishable with a fine, however; for many persons this offense can cause problems with obtaining employment. Multiple offenses could result a jail penalty. It is important to avoid a conviction for this offense as employers and schools look to exclude persons convicted of this offense from their workforce or campuses.
Possession of a Small Amount of Marijuana in a Motor Vehicle
Pleading guilty to this offense could result in a “controlled substance” notation on the driver’s driving record and possible loss of driving privileges. The notation “controlled substance” often causes problems for the person because potential employers and background checking entities typically, and mistakenly, infer a more serious offense. You should consult with an experience criminal defense attorney before pleading guilty to this offense.