Cocaine is a controlled substance in the United States, including Mississippi. You can face serious legal troubles if you’re found with cocaine. The penalties that are possible depend on a variety of factors, including the exact charge and whether you have prior convictions.
There are a few different cocaine-related charges that are possible in this state. Understanding a few points about these is often beneficial when you need to determine how to handle a defense strategy.
Possible cocaine charges
Cocaine charges include possession, sale, and trafficking. A cocaine possession charge is a misdemeanor if a person has less than .1 grams of cocaine for personal use. Any amount larger than that is a felony charge that’s punishable by up to 20 years in prison, depending on the amount.
Cocaine trafficking charges occur when a person has more than 30 grams of cocaine. There’s a mandatory minimum of 10 years in prison for a conviction of this charge. A person who’s convicted of three or more drug-selling offenses in 12 months can also face trafficking charges.
Selling cocaine is a felony in this state. It’s punishable by up to 30 years in prison. The maximum amount of time in prison you face depends on how much you have. Up to 2 grams has an 8-year maximum. Two to 10 grams has a mandatory minimum of three years and a maximum of 20 years. More than 10 grams comes with a minimum of five years in prison and a maximum of 30 years.
Some people who are facing cocaine charges might qualify for drug court. The requirements are strict and include factors, such as not having violent charges. In these programs, the person goes through intensive supervision by the court while taking part in drug rehabilitation. They must meet specific requirements to successfully complete the program.
Anyone who has previous convictions for drugs will likely face enhanced penalties. These are more serious than what the penalties would be for an initial conviction. It’s up to the judge to determine what type of sentence a person will face after a conviction.
Anyone facing cocaine charges should ensure they understand the points in the case against them and what possible penalties they’re facing. Crafting a defense strategy as soon as possible after they find out about the charges may help them to determine the best option for this.