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Drug charges, possession of marijuana, drug possession in minnesota, meth

DRUG CHARGES
in Minnesota

In Minnesota and Wisconsin sentences for drug charges have become increasingly severe. Different drugs and different drug quantities result in different levels of offenses. Sentencing for drug offenses are determined by guidelines set by the Minnesota Sentencing Guidelines Commission and include presumptive sentences to encourage some uniformity in sentencing.

The actual length of a sentence for a Minnesota drug charge is determined by the defendant's past criminal record. This is called a criminal history score. As a result, the penalties are far more severe for repeat offenders. A Judge may also consider other factors to increase potential jail sentences. For example, a sentence for a drug crime may be increased if the drug offense took place in a school zone or a park zone. Even a first offense may call for a presumed sentence of more than 12 years!

Below we have listed some "guidelines" for each degree of drug offenses. These guidelines refer to the length of time that a person convicted of the listed offense would serve in prison. Under Minnesota law, the definition of cocaine includes powdered cocaine and crack.

In addition to charging offenders with possession and sale crimes, Minnesota prosecutors have other charging resources available and may:

  1. Charge a defendant for administering a drug to injure or to facilitate the commission of a crime;
  2. Forfeit any cash, vehicle or residence used in the commission of the crime;
  3. Charge a Defendant with causing great bodily harm by, directly or indirectly, selling, giving away, bartering, delivering, exchanging, distributing, or administering a controlled substance to another.
  4. Charge a defendant with failing to purchase drug tax stamps;
  5. Charge a defendant with money laundering;
  6. Charge a defendant with racketeering, under which a dealer can be fined up to three times his/her gross profits.

First Degree
Sale: 10 grams crack. 50 grams cocaine/heroin/methamphetamine. 200 doses hallucinogen. 50 kilos marijuana.
Possession: 25 grams of cocaine, heroin or methamphetamine. 500 grams of other narcotics. 500 doses of hallucinogen. 100 kilos marijuana.
Manufacturing: A person is guilty of controlled substance crime in the first degree if the person manufactures any amount of methamphetamine.
Penalty: A person convicted may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than 30 years or to payment of a fine of not more than $1,000,000, or both. If the conviction is a subsequent controlled substance conviction, a person convicted under subdivisions 1 to 2a shall be committed to the commissioner of corrections for not less than four years nor more than 40 years and, in addition, may be sentenced to payment of a fine of not more than $1,000,000.
Guidelines: 86 to 146 months.

Second Degree
Sale: 3 grams crack, 10 grams cocaine/methamphetamine. 50 doses hallucinogen. 25 kilos marijuana, or sale of any Schedule I or II narcotic drug either to a person under 18 or in a school zone or park zone.
Possession: 6 grams of

cocaine heroin or methamphetamine. 50 grams of other narcotics. 100 doses hallucinogen. 50 kilos marijuana
Penalty: A person convicted may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than 25 years and payment of a fine of not more than $500,000. If the person has a prior conviction there is minimum sentences not less than three years nor more than 40 years and, in addition, a fine of not more than $500,000. In a prosecution for sales by the same person in two or more counties within a 90-day period, the person may be prosecuted for all of the sales in any county in which one of the sales occurred.
Guidelines: 48 to 98 months.

Third Degree
Sale: Crack/cocaine/heroin. 10 doses hallucinogen, 5 kilo marijuana or same of any Schedule I, II, or III drug (except a Schedule I or II narcotic drug or marijuana) to a person under 18 or employment of person under 18 to sell same.
Possession: 3 grams cocaine, heroin or methamphetamines. 10 grams of other narcotics. 10 kilos marijuana, and any amount of a Schedule I or II narcotic drug in a school zone or park zone.
Penalty: A person convicted may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than 20 years and payment of a fine of not more than $250,000. If this is second conviction, there is a mandatory minimum sentence of two years or more but not more than than 30 years and, a fine of not more than $250,000.
Guidelines: For possession of crack and cocaine, 48 to 98 months; for all other third degree offenses, probation to 54 months.

Fourth Degree
Sale: Any Schedule I, II or III drug (except marijuana), or sale of marijuana of any Schedule IV or V drug to persons under 18.
Possession: 10 doses hallucinogen.
Penalty: A person convicted may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than 15 years and to a fine of not more than $100,000. If there is a prior conviction incarceration cannot be less than one year nor more than 30 years and, in addition to a fine of not more than $100,000.
Guidelines: Probation to 32 months.

Fifth Degree
Sale: Marijuana or any Schedule IV drug.
Possession: All Schedule I, II, III, or IV drugs except 1.5 ounces (42.5 grams) or less of marijuana.
Penalty: 0-5 years, 6 months mandatory minimum if prior drug felony; up to $10,000 fine.
Guidelines: Probation. (In Hennepin ad Dakota Counties diversionary programs are available that may result in no criminal conviction on your record).

Petty Misdemeanor. Possession of a small amount of marijuana (1.5 ounces) is a petty misdemeanor. though petty misdemeanors are not considered "crimes", it is punishable by a fine of up to $200 and attendance at an approved drug education program. A second conviction within two years under this section would be enhanced to a misdemeanor which is a crime and carries with it potential jail time.

Federal Charges

Federal charges are prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney and carry with them penalties that are much more severe than those existing under State law. Federal crimes may be charged when drug crimes occur across state lines.

  • Possession:
    100 grams or more methamphetamine or 1 kilogram or more methamphetamine mixture.
    1 kilogram or more heroin mixture.
    5 kilograms or more cocaine mixture.
    50 grams or more crack mixture.
    100 grams or more PCP or 1 kilogram or more PCP mixture.
    10 grams or more LSD mixture.
    400 grams or more Fentanyl mixture.
    100 grams or more Fentanyl analogue mixture.
    1000 kilograms or more marijuana.
    1000 or more marijuana plants.
    Penalty:
    First Offense: 0 to life, 10 year mandatory minimum; if death or serious injury, 20 year minimum; up to $4 million fine individual, $10 million other than individual.
    Second Offense: 0 to life, 20 year mandatory minimum; if death or serious injury, not less than life; up to $8 million fine individual, $20 million other than individual.
  • Possession:
    10-99 grams methamphetamine or 100-999 grams methamphetamine mixture.
    100-999 grams heroin mixture.
    500-1999 grams cocaine mixture.
    5-99 grams crack mixture.
    10-99 grams PCP or 100-999 grams PCP mixture.
    1-10 grams LSD mixture. 40-399 grams Fentanyl.
    10-99 grams Fentanyl analogue.
    100-1000 kilograms marijuana.
    100-1000 marijuana plants.
    Penalty:
    First Offense: 0 to 40 years mandatory minimum; if death or serious injury, 20 year minimum up to $2 million fine individual, $55 million other than individual.
    Second Offense: 0 to life, 10 year mandatory minimum; if death or serious injury, not less than life; up to $54 million fine individual, $10 million other than individual.
  • Possession:
    Any amount of other Schedule I and Schedule II Controlled Substances.
    50-100 kilograms marijuana.
    50-99 marijuana plants.
    10-100 kilograms hashish.
    1-100 kilograms hashish oil.
    Penalty:
    First Offense: 0 to 20 years; if death or serious injury, 20 year minimum, not more than life; up to $1 million fine individual, $55 million other than individual.
    Second Offense: 0 to 30 years; if death or serious injury, not less than life; up to $2 million fine individual, $10 million other than individual.
  • Possession:
    Any amount of Schedule III Controlled Substances.
    Less than 50 kilograms marijuana.
    Less than 10 kilograms hashish.
    Less than 1 kilogram hashish oil.
    Penalty:
    First Offense: 0 to 5 years; up to $250,000 fine individual, $1 million other than individual.
    Second Offense: 0 to 10 years; up to $500,000 fine individual, $2 million other than individual.
  • Possession:
    Any amount of Schedule IV Controlled Substances.
    Penalty:
    First Offense: 0 to 3 years; up to $250,000 fine individual, $1 million other than individual.
  • Possession:
    Any amount of Schedule V Controlled Substances.
    Penalty:
    First Offense: 0 to 1 year; up to $100,000 fine individual, $250,000 other than individual.
    Second Offense: 0 to 2 years; up to $200,000 fine individual, $500,000 other than individual.
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