Possession of a controlled substance is a serious crime itself, but distribution of a controlled substance can be even more serious. In California, drug distribution is generally defined as the sale, transport, transfer and/or import of controlled substances. With marijuana now becoming legalized in many states, California does allow up to 28 grams of marijuana to be transported or transferred by people over age 21.
Transporting a controlled substance in California can result in a felony, and anywhere from three to five years in prison. However, certain factors can increase the sentence you receive, such as the involvement of minors. For instance, if you sell illegal substances to minors or hire minors to sell these drugs, you could get up to nine years in prison. The sale or distribution of prescription drugs can also result in drug distribution charges, if the seller did not have the appropriate license or credentials to dispense the drugs.
If you have been charged with drug distribution or drug trafficking, there are many defenses you can use in court to defend against the charges you face. For instance, prosecutors must establish that you had the intent to distribute unlawful substances. If you and your attorney can establish that you lacked the requisite intent by showing that you were unaware that you transported an illegal substance, the charges against you may be dropped.
You may also establish that law enforcement officials obtained evidence of your drug distribution through an unlawful search and seizure. Generally, the Fourth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution prohibits law enforcement from searching your home, car, or person without probable cause or a search warrant. Any evidence obtained during an unlawful search may not be used against you in court.
An attorney in your area can review the specifics of your case and determine which defense strategy is right for you.