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Last Updated on: 29th August 2023, 06:38 pm
Heroin Possession and Sale Charges in New York
Heroin is an addictive substance that is classified as a Schedule I controlled substance in both New York state law and federal law. Due to its highly addictive nature, law enforcement agencies and prosecutors take aggressive action against individuals found in possession of heroin.
New York Penal Code and Controlled Substance Offenses
The New York Penal Code categorizes controlled substance offenses into different classifications, including possession, distribution, and possession of drug paraphernalia. When an individual is charged with a drug-related crime, the severity of the charges depends on the amount of heroin involved.
Heroin Possession Charges
According to the New York Penal Code, possession of heroin is considered a criminal offense known as criminal possession of a controlled substance. There are four charges related to heroin possession, with the severity of the charges determined by the quantity of heroin found in the accused’s possession.
Fourth Degree Possession
If an individual is found with at least an eighth of an ounce of heroin, they will be charged with fourth-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance. This offense is classified as a Class C felony, and the consequences can include up to 15 years in prison, as stated in New York Penal Code 220.09.
Third Degree Possession
Those found with at least a half of an ounce of heroin will face third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance. This charge is a Class B felony, and those convicted could face up to 25 years in prison.
Second Degree Possession
If an individual is found with at least four ounces of heroin, they will be charged with second-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance. This is a Class A-II felony, which can result in a life sentence in prison and a maximum fine of $50,000.
First Degree Possession
Individuals found with at least eight ounces of heroin in their possession will face a Class A-I felony charge known as criminal possession of a controlled substance in the first degree. The consequences can include a life sentence in prison and a fine of $500,000.
Heroin Sale Charges
The sale of heroin is classified as the criminal sale of a controlled substance, and the penalties for selling heroin in New York are more severe than possession charges.
The consequences for selling heroin are as follows:
Third Degree Sale
If an individual sells less than a half of an ounce of heroin, they will be charged with third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance. Although this is a possession offense, those who have less than a half of an ounce of the drug with the intent to sell will face this charge.
Second Degree Sale
Those who sell at least a half of an ounce of heroin will be charged with second-degree criminal sale of a controlled substance. This offense is classified as a Class A-II felony.
First Degree Sale
Individuals who sell at least two ounces of heroin will be charged with first-degree criminal sale of a controlled substance.
In addition to possession and sale charges, individuals may also face charges related to drug paraphernalia. The use of drug paraphernalia in relation to heroin, such as equipment used for manufacturing, packaging, and distributing the drug, can result in charges of criminally using drug paraphernalia in the second or first degree.
If you are facing a heroin charge in New York, the Spodek Law Group is a team of skilled attorneys with over 40 years of experience in criminal defense cases. They can provide expert legal representation and guidance to help navigate the complexities of the legal system.