Drug Trafficking

Under California law, most drug trafficking offenses prosecuted in state court are charged as transporting a controlled substance. In fact, California law makes it a crime to possess, possess with intent to sell, sale or deliver, transport, transfer, or import the controlled substance.

California Health & Safety code 11352HS prohibits the sale of drugs or the moving of drugs from one place to another by any means.

Drug crimes for transporting or selling a controlled substance are subject to serious penalties including years in prison and a steep fine.

Attorney for Drug Trafficking in Ventura, CA

If you are charged with the sale or transportation of a controlled substance, then contact an attorney at Jay Leiderman Law in Ventura, CA.

Since 2006, the California Bar’s Board of Legal Specialization has designated Jay Leiderman as a board certified specialist in “criminal law.” This special designation has been awarded to less than 400 criminal defense attorney across the entire state of California.

To discuss an ongoing criminal investigation or pending charges, call Jay Leiderman to discuss your case.

Call (805) 654-0200.

Transportation of Controlled Substances in Ventura, CA

Under California Health & Safety Code 11352, the law prohibits the sale and transportation of controlled substances when evidence shows that the drugs were sold, given away, transported for sale or imported into the State of California.

The elements of the offense include:

  1. taking some action to sell, furnish, administer, give away, transport, or import into California;
  2. with knowledge that the substance was a controlled substance; and
  3. with knowledge of the presence of the controlled substance.

For crimes of transporting the substance for sale, the prosecution must show there is a “usable amount” of the controlled substance.

Types of Controlled Substances Prohibited in California

Health & Safety Code 11352 defines the term “controlled substances” to include any of the following:

  • Cocaine
  • Heroin
  • GHB
  • LSD
  • Opiates
  • Peyote

Controlled substances also include many prescription drugs such as oxycontin and vicodin.

Penalties for the Transportation or Sale of Drugs

Under California law, the transportation or sale of under HS 11352 is classified as a felony with penalties including:

  • prison time of 3 to 9 years;
  • a fine of up to $20,000

Enhanced penalties might apply to any of the following circumstances:

  • selling or transporting controlled substances to a minor child, pregnant women, or vulnerable adult with a mental health disorder or prior felony conviction; or
  • selling drugs to people located near a drug treatment facilities or other prohibited areas.

The most common defenses for drug trafficking crimes include:

  • not knowing the illicit nature of the item in your possession;
  • not being in actual or constructive possession of the substance just because it is located near you or your property; or
  • the investigating officers engaged in entrapment in order to manufacture the crime the defendant was not otherwise predisposed to commit.

Federal Drug Trafficking Laws

Many drug trafficking crimes are prosecuted in federal court under 21 U.S.C. § 841. A federal investigation into drug trafficking is more likely to be prosecuted in federal court if any of the following circumstances apply:

  • the drugs are being distributed into or out of California or the southern boarder;
  • the drug dealing took place in a so-called High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA);

The penalties and punishments in federal court that might be imposed after a conviction for drug trafficking determine on a variety of factors including:

  • the amount of drugs involved;
  • whether injury or death occurred as a result of the use of the controlled substance;
  • the defendant’s prior record for certain designated offenses.

The penalties for drug trafficking under federal law can range from five (5) years in prison to a life sentence and a fine of up to $20,000,000.