Were you arrested in connection with possessing crystal meth or another form of methamphetamines? You should contact a Charlotte possession of methamphetamines lawyer at Randall & Stump, PLLC as soon as possible. If you are accused of possessing, manufacturing, selling, or possessing with intent to sell or deliver (PWISD) meth, you are facing felony charges, which can turn your life upside down. If you are convicted of a felony drug offense, you face a permanent criminal record, high fines, and years in prison. After you complete your statutory penalties, you will still have to endure a great deal of stigma for being convicted of a drug crime, which can impact your education, career, and personal life.
To avoid these consequences, the best thing to do is work with an experienced and aggressive Charlotte drug lawyer from Randall & Stump, PLLC. Call us today at (980) 237-4579, or reach out through our online contact form.
North Carolina Drug Laws
If you are arrested for possession of methamphetamine, you will be charged under North Carolina General Statutes (NCGS) 90-95(a). This statute states it is illegal:
- To manufacture, sell, or deliver, or possess and intend to manufacture, sell, or deliver a controlled substance.
- To create, sell, or deliver, or possess and intend to sell or deliver a counterfeit controlled substance
- Possess a controlled substance.
The level of the charge depends on whether you are accused of illegal conduct under NCGS 90-95(a)(1), NCGS 90-95(a)(2), or NCGS 90-95(a)(3).
North Carolina’s Schedule of Controlled Substances
Controlled substances are divided into six categories under the North Carolina Controlled Substances Act. Schedule I drugs are the most addictive and dangerous, and they have no current medical uses. Schedule II controlled substances are also highly addictive and dangerous, though some may have currently accepted medical uses. Methamphetamines are labeled Schedule II drugs. As the schedules increase, the levels of potential addiction and danger associated with the drug decrease.
Charges for Possession of Methamphetamines
If you are accused of actual or constructive possession of methamphetamine, you will be charged under NCGS 90-95(a)(3) and NCGS 90-95(d)(2). Possession of methamphetamine is a class I felony.
An experienced Charlotte drug lawyer should handle felony possession of a Schedule II controlled substance (such as meth). In this situation, it is not a question of how much meth is a felony. Any amount of meth found on your person, in your car, or at your home is enough for you to face felony drug charges.
What is Possession?
You can face methamphetamine possession charges for actual possession of the drug. This would mean you are found to have the drug on your person. You may have had a small bag of the drugs in your pocket or in your bookbag. You also can be charged with possession of meth if you constructively possessed the drug. Constructive possession occurs when the meth is not on your physical person but is within your property or within your physical reach. Under constructive possession, you may not be the only person who had access to the drugs. You might have been in a friend’s vehicle, or you may share your apartment with several roommates.
Whether you are charged with actual or constructive possession of methamphetamines, you should contact an experienced Charlotte drug defense lawyer at Randall & Stump, PLLC. We will look at your case closely to determine the strongest possible defenses, and certain defenses may be available to you if your case is based on constructive possession.
Manufacturing Meth Charges
Manufacturing meth is a significant undertaking. It requires gathering a great deal of precursor chemicals and supplies, gaining access to or building a professional or homemade lab, and understanding complex scientific principles necessary to create crystal meth or another form of the drug. Meth labs are known to be extremely dangerous because one small mistake could cause a deadly explosion. These labs also are hazardous to the health of those in or near the lab. Because of these factors, North Carolina treats manufacturing meth as a much higher felony than packing or labeling the drug. As such, manufacturing meth is punished as a class C felony.
Possession With Intent to Manufacture, Sell, or Deliver (PWIMSD)
Charges for PWIMSD of a Schedule II controlled substance under NCGS 90-95(a)(1) are also determined by NCGS 90-95(b)(1a). While manufacturing meth is a class C felony, if you are charged based on packaging or repackaging meth, or labeling or relabeling meth containers, then you will face class H felony charges.
Trafficking in Methamphetamines
Under NCGS 90-95(h)(3b), anyone who sells, manufactures, delivers, transports, or possesses at least 28 grams of methamphetamine or a mixture containing meth will be charged with felony trafficking in methamphetamine. Drug trafficking charges involving meth are charged as:
- Level One Trafficking in Methamphetamines – Between 28 and 200 grams – Punished as a class F felony, punishable by 70 to 93 months in prison, and at least $50,000 in fines
- Level Two Trafficking in Methamphetamines – Between 200 and 400 grams – Punished as a class E felony, punishable with 90 to 120 months in prison, and at least $100,000 in fines
- Level Three Trafficking in Methamphetamines – More than 400 grams – Punished as a class C felony, punishable by 225 to 282 months in prison, and at least $250,000 in fines
Maintaining a Dwelling for Possession of Methamphetamines
Another charge you may face if you provide or own a place to keep drugs, conduct drug distribution, manufacturing, or sales is known as maintaining a dwelling under NCGS 90-108(a)(7). If you knowingly keep or maintain any store, shop, warehouse, home, building, vehicle, boat, plane, or anywhere else that is used by people to imbibe, keep, or sell controlled substances, then you may be charged with a class 1 misdemeanor or a higher felony.
If you fortify the building or structure to keep the police or other law enforcement agents out, you can be charged with a class I felony.
Felony Penalties in Charlotte, NC
When you are facing a felony charge for meth possession, manufacture, distribution, PWIMSD, or trafficking in meth, you should speak with our Charlotte drug lawyers right away. North Carolina’s sentencing system is complicated and based on a predetermined sentencing charts, as well as statutes.
To learn the potential penalty you face for a meth-related drug crime, talk with an experienced Charlotte criminal defense attorney. Your lawyer can review the level of the offense, your prior record level, and any potential mitigating or aggravating factors to calculate the minimum and maximum possible sentences.