Drug charges are serious allegations that often have severe consequences. Federal and state laws address several drug offenses that involve the illegal possession, trafficking, manufacture, or sale of a controlled dangerous substance (CDS), such as marijuana, cocaine, heroin, or medications like Oxycontin and Xanax that are commonly available by prescription.
Among drug-related charges, drug possession is a less severe charge that is usually enforced by state officials as opposed to federal administrators. In New jersey, the law prohibits the operation of a motor vehicle while in possession of a CDS.
Most arrests for drug possession are for simple possession. A charge of simple possession means that the individual is charged with possessing the drug without the intent to distribute. This intention is determined by the amount of drug found in the offender’s possession. A small amount of the drug implies no intent to distribute, while a quantity above a certain amount carries the charge of intention to distribute.
Throughout the United States, simple possession is usually charged as a misdemeanor that is punishable by probation, jail time, or a fine. Age and criminal history are often considered during sentencing.
New Jersey’s traffic-related drug possession law carries a minimum fine of $50 and a mandatory driver’s license suspension for a period of two years.
For a possession charge to be valid, the accused must have knowingly been in possession of a CDS without a valid prescription. The definition of possession allows for actual possession as well as constructive possession.
Actual possession means that the substance was found on the accused. Constructive possession means that the substance was not on their person but in a spot that they could access, such as a locker; this is usually the case when drugs are discovered in a car during a traffic stop. Interestingly, the drug possession charge does not require proof that the drug was used by the defendant.
Traffic-Related Drug Possession Charge
The New Jersey statute prohibits the operation of a motor vehicle while in possession of a CDS. Conviction for traffic violation charges involving drug possession is contingent upon proof that the accused operated a motor vehicle on a highway while they possessed a CDS on their person or in the vehicle.
Cherry Hill Traffic Violations Lawyers at Agre & St. John Defend Those Who Have Traffic-Related Drug Possession Charges
If a controlled substance was found in your vehicle during a traffic stop in New Jersey, you can be charged with drug possession. Many legal theories may support your case against the charges, including questions about why your car was stopped and how the search and your arrest was conducted. Our experienced Cherry Hill traffic violations lawyers at Agre & St. John will fight against your charges. Contact us online or call 856-428-7797 to schedule a confidential consultation about your case. Located in Haddonfield, New Jersey, we represent clients in Burlington County, Camden County, Gloucester County, Salem County, and throughout South Jersey.