Contact our Mays Landing Office To Speak To The Former Drug Task Force or Major Crimes Bureau Director About Your Cocaine Charge in Atlantic City, Galloway, Egg Harbor, Hamilton, Pleasantville, Margate, Hammonton or Another Atlantic County Municipality
Cocaine usage is on the rise nationwide so it makes sense that there have been a rising number of individuals contacting our lawyers after being arrested for possession of cocaine and even cocaine distribution in Atlantic County. Whether its a routine user caught in Galloway with cocaine in his car, a weekend warrior partying in Atlantic City or a dealer operating out of Egg Harbor Township, more and more cocaine charges are making their way to the Atlantic County Superior Court in Mays Landing. Make no mistake about it, however, cocaine possession is a felony and the severity of this type of offense can be extreme with it involves distributing, selling or possession with intent to distribute cocaine. There is absolutely no doubt that you, therefore, need representation from the very best attorney you can find if you are facing a cocaine offense here in Atlantic County.
Our local Mays Landing law firm has the qualifications that you need to fully protect your future. We are the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, one of the largest firms specializing in criminal defense in the state. Most of the attorneys on our ten-member team are former prosecutors, including ex-directors of the Drug Task Force and Major Crimes Bureau. Clients that choose to hire a lawyer on our staff also get the benefit of our 150 plus years of combined experience defending third-degree cocaine possession charges, as well as cases involving a crime of the first, second and third degree for distribution of cocaine. To speak to a cocaine defense lawyer about your case without obligation, call (609) 616-0020.
Charged With Cocaine Possession in Atlantic City or Another Atlantic County Municipality?
There are many questions that come to mind when someone is charged with cocaine possession. The first thing most individuals want to know is what does prosecutor have to prove in order to convict me of possession of cocaine? The answer to this question is found by referring to the drug possession statute – N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10. This statute makes “it is unlawful for any person, knowingly or purposefully, to obtain, or to possess, actually or constructively, a controlled substance or controlled substance analog, unless the substance was obtained directly, or pursuant to a valid prescription or order form from a practitioner, while acting in the course of his professional practice, or except as otherwise authorized.” Cocaine definitely falls within this prohibition since it is a Schedule II drug under the Controlled Substances Act. You should also know that it is commonplace for the Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office to file distribution charges (a.k.a. possession with intent to distribute cocaine) where the quantity of cocaine possessed is more than a gram or two.
Possession of cocaine in Galloway or another municipality can be established directly or constructively. Cocaine possession is direct when it is in the actual physical possession of an individual, for example, in his/her pocket. Constructive possession of cocaine applies where, while not in direct control, the possessor is aware of its presence and has the ability and intent to take control over it in the future. The classic example of constructive possession is cocaine hidden in the trunk of a car or apartment. You can be convicted of a third-degree crime at the courthouse in Mays Landing, the place where all cocaine charges are heard, if you possessed cocaine either way.
Will I Have A Felony Criminal Record If I Am Convicted Of Cocaine Possession in Mays Landing?
Yes. It is a third-degree crime, a felony, to possess cocaine in violation of 2C:35-10. If you are convicted of this violation, you will have a criminal record that cannot be expunged for a minimum of five years.
What Are The Penalties That I Am Facing For Possessing Cocaine in Galloway Or Elsewhere In Atlantic County?
If you are arrested, charged and later convicted for possessing cocaine, you are exposed to a prison sentence of up to five (5) years and a $35,000.00 fine. You may also be placed on probation, ordered to undergo drug counseling and/or be required to perform community service. The judge sentencing you in Mays Landing for possessing cocaine in Galloway or one of the other Atlantic County municipalities must also suspend your driver’s license for six to twenty-four months.
You should also know that, in addition to a direct defense to the charge, our attorneys can explore two diversionary programs so that you avoid the aforementioned penalties. The first program, Pretrial Intervention (“PTI”), requires completion of a one-year probationary period. The cocaine charge is dismissed upon successful completion of supervision. Drug Court is another avenue that can be utilized but it involves up to five years of supervision.
Cocaine Possession Defense Lawyers in Hamilton New Jersey
If you or someone you love have been arrested and charged with a cocaine possession offense, you need representation from an attorney familiar with the local court system, in particular, the Atlantic County Criminal Court in Mays Landing. That is exactly what the defense lawyers in the Mays Landing/Hamilton Office of the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall can afford you. Our attorneys are experienced in handling drug-related crimes and have the necessary resources to ensure that the best result is achieved in your cocaine possession case. You can contact us at (609) 616-0020 for a free consultation anytime 24/7. We handle cocaine possession charges throughout Atlantic County, including those arising in Hamilton, Somers Point, Northfield, and Pleasantville.
Atlantic County NJ Cocaine Distribution Charges
Having handled multiple drug distribution and other drug-related charges in New Jersey, the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall understand that every case is different. Sometimes, cocaine distribution charges stem from CDS is a motor vehicle, while other times the defendant simply possessed a large amount of cocaine that gave rise to the presumption that he or she “intended” to later distribute. Regardless of the circumstances, charges for cocaine manufacturing or distribution are some of most stringent of all drug crimes in Atlantic County. The New Jersey Legislature enacted strict statutes for drug-related offenses. Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5, “it unlawful for a person to knowingly or purposely manufacture, distribute or dispense, or possess or have under his or her control with the intent to distribute or dispense a controlled dangerous substance or controlled dangerous substance analog.” Depending on the amount of drugs the defendant possessed at the time of the arrest, charges for cocaine distribution may carry up to twenty (20) years in a New Jersey State Prison with possible mandatory parole ineligibility. If you or someone you know have been arrested and indicted on drug distribution charges, contact the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall today. Our team of criminal trial attorneys are comprised of former New Jersey Prosecutors who have the experience and resources necessary to defend your charges at the Atlantic County Superior Court.
Cocaine Distribution In Atlantic City In Violation Of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5
There are two situations that generally lead to drug distribution charges in Atlantic County: (1) getting caught in the act of distributing drugs; or (2) possessing cocaine with the intent to distribute it at a later date. Clients often focus on the fact that they were not in physical possession of the drugs at the time of the arrest so they cannot be convicted of distribution of cocaine. Unfortunately, actual possession is not required under N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5 to prove a charge for distributing or possession with intent to distribute cocaine in Atlantic City, Pleasantville, Egg Harbor Township or another municipality. Rather, a concept known as constructive possession will satisfy the possession aspect of this crime. While actual possession typically involves having physical custody, control or contact of an object, constructive possession involves situations where there is no physical custody of the cocaine, but instead, you have knowledge of the cocaine and the “ability to control it”.
Manufacturing, Distributing or Dispensing Cocaine in Egg Harbor Township
Drug distribution, irrespective of the type of drug, is an indictable offense (i.e. felony) in Atlantic County. With regard to cocaine distribution, the weight of the drugs recovered at the arrest will determine the severity and degree of the offense. Where the quantity of cocaine possessed at the time of the arrest was five (5) ounces or more, including any adulterants, the charges will be in the first degree. Where the quantity of cocaine possessed at the time of the arrest was one-half ounce or more (>1/2), but less than five ounces including any adulterants or dilutants, the charges will be in the second degree. Lastly, it will be a third-degree crime where the quantity of cocaine possessed at the time of the arrest was less than one-half (<1/2) ounce.
Cocaine Distribution Conviction in Pleasantville NJ
If you are arrested, charged, indicted and eventually convicted of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5 for Cocaine Distribution, you are facing life-altering penalties. First Degree Cocaine Distribution or Manufacturing carries up to twenty (20) years in a New Jersey State Prison, which may include a term of parole ineligibility, and a fine up to $500,000.00. What is of particular importance here is that a first-degree drug distribution charge will carry a minimum term. This means that prison is mandatory and you will have a period of parole ineligibility fixed at anywhere from a third (⅓) to one-half (½) of the maximum sentence imposed. In practice, this would mean that a twenty (20) year sentence would require that the court impose a minimum term of between six (6) and ten (10) years during which time you will not be eligible for early release on parole. Second Degree Cocaine Distribution, you will face between five (5) and ten (10) years in a New Jersey State Penitentiary, and a fine up to a $150,000.00 fine. Finally, if convicted of a third-degree crime for cocaine distribution, you face between three (3) and five (5) years of incarceration and a fine up to a $75,000.00 fine.
For immediate assistance and consultation on your Atlantic County drug charges, contact the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall. Our Atlantic County Office can be reached day and night at(609) 616-0020. The first consultation is always free of charge and we will assist in advising you of what steps should be taken next in the genesis of your case.