Contact Our Jersey City Or Hoboken Office To Speak To Our Former Prosecutors & Highly Skilled Hudson County Cocaine Possession Defense Lawyers
The team of Hudson County NJ cocaine possession attorneys at the Law Office of Jonathan F. Marshall has the experience you need if you have been charged with cocaine possession. Representation by an attorney that is highly skilled in defending cocaine possession offenses in Jersey City at the Hudson County Superior Court is crucial since a conviction results in not only a lengthy state prison sentence but also a felony criminal record, community service, high fines and a potential two year loss of your driving privileges.
The governing statute in New Jersey for cocaine possession is N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10(a)(1). Typically, drug charges arise from some form of search and seizure. The underlying motor vehicle, apartment or other search is often the key area of focus to successfully defending an individual who has been arrested for being in possession of cocaine in Jersey City, Hoboken or another local municipality. Therefore, it is imperative that you speak to an experienced Hudson County, New Jersey drug possession defense lawyer about your options. In addition, depending on the circumstances of the arrest and the quantity possessed, an arrest can mushroom into a charge for possession with intent to distribute cocaine.
If you or a loved one has been charged with possession of cocaine in towns like Union City, West New York, Hoboken, Bayonne or North Bergen, the Law Office of Jonathan F. Marshall can help. Our team of ten New Jersey drug possession defense lawyers have over 150 years of combined experience representing clients on possession of cocaine charges. Most of the attorneys are also former prosecutors, including a former director of major crimes and another who was the head of the drug task force.
Initial consultations with an attorney on staff are always without charge. Please do not hesitate to contact us to speak to an accomplished Hudson County criminal lawyer if you are facing a cocaine possession offense. We are available 24/7 by contact our Jersey City Office or Hoboken Office at at (201) 309-0500. Here is some important information on the offense of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10(a)(1), possession of cocaine, in New Jersey.
Jersey City, NJ Cocaine Possession Lawyers
N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10(a)(1) states in pertinent part, that:
It is unlawful for any person, knowingly or purposely, to obtain, or to possess, actually or constructively, a controlled dangerous substance or controlled substance analog, unless the substance was obtained directly, or pursuant to a valid prescription or order form from a practitioner…
In order to convict you for unlawful possession of cocaine contrary to 2C:35-10, the prosecutor must prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, that you: (1) acted knowingly; (2) to actually or constructively possess; (3) a substance that was cocaine. An individual acts knowingly if they are aware that the substance is cocaine. Knowledge is often inferred from other facts and circumstances such as the presence of paraphernalia, evidence of use by the defendant or a prior history of possession. Actual possession exists when the defendant has direct control over cocaine such as where it is in his/her pocket, wallet or purse. Constructive possession applies when an individual lacks physical custody of the cocaine but is aware of the presence of the CDS and has a purpose and ability to exercise control over it in the future. The state establishes proof that the CDS is cocaine by presenting a certified laboratory report.
What are the Penalties if I am Convicted of Cocaine Possession at the Hudson County Superior Court in Jersey City?
The degree of the felony charged for anyone caught possessing cocaine in New Jersey will depend directly on the amount of cocaine possessed. Pursuant to N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10(a)(1), a defendant will be charged with third degree felony cocaine possession offense in New Jersey, if the amount of cocaine in question was under ½ ounce. If the cocaine possessed was more than 1/2 ounce but under 5 ounces then the defendant will be charged with a second degree felony. If the cocaine possessed was more than 5 ounces then the defendant will be charged with a first degree felony.
- A third degree felony: 3 to 5 years in state prison, fined up to $35,000
- A second degree felony: 5 to 10 years in state prison, fined up to $150,000
- A first degree felony: 10 to 20 years in state prison, fined up to $300,000
- In addition to penalties listed above, every defendant convicted of a drug offense in New Jersey can potentially have their driving privileges suspended for up to two years. However, with that being said, the potential licenses loss can be overcome, if your attorney can convince the Judge that an extreme hardship would occur to they suspended your drivers license.
If the defendant is charged with a third degree felony possession of cocaine (i.e. personal possession as opposed to distribution) they may be eligible for a diversionary program known as Pre-Trial Intervention (“PTI”). PTI is a diversionary program in New Jersey, whereby if the defendant completes the probationary period imposed by the Judge, without issue and completes any other special conditions imposed by the Judge, the defendant will walk away from their felony cocaine possession charges without a criminal record let alone serving a day in jail.
Hudson County NJ Drug Possession Attorney
As you see from above, the penalties for cocaine possession Hudson County NJ can be devastating. Therefore, it is imperative that you speak to an experience Jersey City NJ cocaine possession lawyer about your options immediately. The cocaine possession defense lawyers at our firm fight for their clients utilizing decades of experience. A potential lengthy state prison sentences, high fines and a felony criminal record should be reason enough to make any one seek out an experienced drug defense attorney to defend their Jersey City case. This is exactly what we are able to provide so that you have every opportunity to escape a conviction. Give a Hudson County, New Jersey drug offense defense lawyer at the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall at call at 201-309-0500 for a free consultation.