Experienced Defense Attorney for Serious Drug Charges in Hackensack, NJ
Many drug crimes are felony offenses at the state and federal levels. In fact, if you are being prosecuted for a drug crime other than possession of a small amount of marijuana for personal consumption, there is a strong chance that you are being prosecuted for a felony offense.
When is a Crime Classified as a Felony?
In general terms, a felony is any crime that carries a potential sentence of one or more years in prison. Crimes carrying less than a year of jail time are misdemeanor offenses. While New Jersey law establishes a number of felony and misdemeanor drug-related offenses, most drug crimes prosecuted at the federal level are felonies.
What is the Difference Between a Felony and an Indictable Offense?
In New Jersey, felonies are technically referred to as “indictable offenses.” There really is no practical difference other than the terminology. But, if you hear the term “indictable offense” in relation to the drug crime (or crimes) with which you are being charged, at least this minimally tells you that you are being prosecuted in state court.
What are the Degrees of Felony Drug Charges?
In New Jersey, felony drug crimes can be charged as first, second, third or fourth-degree indictable offenses. The potential penalties for drug crimes in each of these categories are as follows:
- First-Degree Indictable Offense – Up to $200,000 in fines and a maximum prison sentence ranging from 10 years to life depending upon the specific drug crime charged.
- Second-Degree Indictable Offense – Up to $150,000 in fines and five to 10 years of imprisonment.
- Third-Degree Indictable Offense – Up to $15,000 in fines and three to five years of imprisonment.
- Fourth-Degree Indictable Offense – Up to $10,000 in fines and 18 months of imprisonment.
At the federal level, things get more complicated. Federal law establishes 43 “offense levels” for felony crimes, and drug crimes can fall anywhere along this spectrum. Additionally, some federal drug crimes (and related crimes, such as money laundering and tax fraud) are subject to statutory minimum penalties that differ from those that would otherwise apply under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines.
What Types of Drug Crimes are Felony Offenses?
As noted above, most serious drug crimes are felonies. Some examples of the most-common felony drug charges include:
- Drug Cultivation
- Drug Distribution
- Drug Manufacturing
- Drug Possession (other than marijuana for personal use)
- Drug Trafficking
- Prescription Drug Crimes
What are My Chances of Avoiding Conviction After a Felony Drug Arrest?
If you have been arrested and charged with a felony drug crime, the outcome of your case will depend on numerous different factors. You could be convicted, but you could also walk free. One of the biggest factors that will affect the outcome of your case is your choice of legal representation. To find out why defendants facing felony drug charges in Hackensack, NJ trust defense attorney Scott Gorman, schedule a free consultation today.
Schedule a Free Consultation with Hackensack Criminal Defense Attorney Scott Gorman
To schedule a free consultation about your felony drug crime case with defense attorney Scott Gorman, please call 201-489-9199 or contact us online. We will arrange for you to speak with Mr. Gorman in confidence as soon as possible.