The legalization of marijuana has become a hot issue on ballots across the United States. Even Illinois voters approved a medical marijuana law, which is set to launch sometime this year. It may seem that the state is easing its restrictions on marijuana possession and usage, but the medical marijuana law is the strictest seen in the country and those without a doctor’s permission can find themselves facing criminal charges for marijuana.
Under state and federal law, it is illegal to use, possess, or manufacture marijuana under the Cannabis Control Act. Possession of less than 30 grams or sale of less than 10 grams is considered a misdemeanor crime that can find someone facing time behind bars and assessment fines of a few hundred dollars. Any amount above misdemeanor limit will be considered a felony level drug crime and can carry up to 30 years in prison and thousands of dollars in fines and assessments for the alleged crime.
In addition to sale, possession, and trafficking, the possession or sale of any items used to grow, harvest, store, or use marijuana is illegal. Known as paraphernalia, selling these items to adults, pregnant women, or minors can result in a felony conviction as well.
WHAT SHOULD I DO ONCE I’VE BEEN ARRESTED?
If you have been arrested for marijuana, you should retain the services of a drug crime lawyer to defend your case. Not only are you facing time behind bars and significant fines, but drug charges can remain on your criminal record for the rest of your life, preventing you from keeping or maintaining employment.
A seasoned legal advocate can help show:
- Law enforcement overstepped their role in connection with the arrest
- The search warrant for the drugs was not valid
- You did not actually possess the marijuana
- You did not know the substance was an illegal drug
- Dominion and control over the substance was never established
- You have a legal right to possess marijuana due to illness
Depending on your case, there may be additional methods that can be used on your behalf. Without speaking with an attorney, however, you will not know the resources and laws that can be used against the prosecution in your defense.
Don’t tarnish your reputation for a marijuana offense. Contact Martin & Kent, LLC to receive respected representation from a legal team that has over 40 years of combined legal experience handling cases similar to yours.