Is Drug Possession a Felony or Misdemeanor Drug Crime?

Drug possession laws and penalties in Texas are severely enforced. Simple drug possession offenses, such as possession with intent to distribute, can lead to either a misdemeanor or felony charge. The nature of the charge relies on the quantity in possession, how the drug was concealed or stored, the discovery of large amounts of money, the presence of paraphernalia, and the suspect’s criminal record.

The following is a brief summary of drug possession classifications and the associated penalties according to Texas law:

  • Penalty Group 1 (e.g. heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine) – Minimum penalties result in up to two years in jail and a maximum fine of $10,000, while possession of 400 grams or more can lead to life imprisonment. Furthermore, the maximum penalty for possession of a Penalty Group 1A substance (e.g. LSD or other hallucinogens) could result in a penalty of two years to life imprisonment with fines imposed of up to $250,000.
  • Penalty Group 2 (e.g. MDMA, PCP, mescaline) – Less than a gram can be punishable by a jail sentence of up to two years and maximum sentences of life imprisonment and fines up to $50,000 for 400 grams or more.
  • Penalty Groups 3 & 4 (prescription drugs) – Minimum penalties result in a maximum jail sentence of one year and a fine of up to $4,000. The maximum prison sentence of 20 years and a fine of up to $10,000 are given for amounts over 200 grams.
  • Marijuana – Possession of under two ounces of marijuana is punishable by a maximum jail sentence of 180 days.

If you were arrested for or charged with drug possession in Texas, contact our Plano criminal defense attorney at The Law Offices of Scott Edgett and request a free consultation today.

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