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220.18 Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Second Degree30 Jan 2019

220.18 Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Second Degree
In New York, there are many drug related crimes with which a person can be charged. As per New York’s Penal Code 220.18, criminal possession in the second degree of a controlled substance is only one of them. In order for a person to be charged with this particular crime, the controlled substance does not necessarily have to be found on the individual’s person. It can be found at another place that is under the control of the individual, including their home, workplace or even their vehicle.

How a Person Can Be Charged with Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Second Degree

Generally speaking, in order for the prosecution to successfully makes their argument and prove that the defendant is guilty of criminal possession of a controlled substance in the second degree, they must prove that the person knew the whereabouts of the controlled substance. Per the New York Penal Code 220.18, the individual must have the substance illegally in their possession and the following must also be in place:

• The controlled substance must include at least four ounces of a narcotic
• The controlled substance must include at least two ounces of methamphetamines
• The controlled substance must consist of at least 10 grams of a stimulant
• The controlled substance must include at least 25 milligrams of lysergic acid or diethylamide
• The controlled substance must consist of at least 625 milligrams of a hallucinogen
• The controlled substance must include at least 25 grams of a hallucinogenic substance
• The controlled substance must include at least 2,880 milligrams of methadone

Example of Penal Code 220.18, Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Second Degree

An example of criminal possession of a controlled substance in the second degree as per Penal Code 220.18 is police getting information from someone that their neighbor is storing heroin in their home. The police are granted a search warrant and conduct a search of the home, uncovering the substance stashed under his mattress in bags. The amount they find is considerable, but the man claims he has no idea how the drugs got there. Subsequently, the police take him in for questioning.

Possible Defenses to Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Second Degree

There are certain defenses the criminal defense attorney can use in a court case to help their client. One of the most common is lack of probable cause. The police are required to have a reason to suspect that a person has committed a crime. A person’s rights cannot be violated by police if there is no probable cause, or the case would be thrown out of court.

Quality of controlled substance is a defense in which it is proven that the amount of the substance in the defendant’s possession was less than what is required per the Penal Code. In this situation, the judge can hand down a reduced charge.

Another defense is to argue that the person had no knowledge of the controlled substance. If the defense can prove this, it can lead to doubt in the case.

Penalties and Sentences for Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Second Degree

Criminal possession of a controlled substance in the second degree is charged as a Class A-II felony, which means a person who is convicted of the crime can receive life in prison. However, if the individual does not have a prior criminal history, they may receive three to eight years of prison. There is also a hefty fine of up to $50,000 that the individual is required to pay.

Drug crimes are always very serious in the state of New York. As a result, if a person is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance in the second degree, they need to immediately get in touch with a skilled criminal defense attorney who has experience in the area of drug crimes. It is the chance the individual has to get the charges reduced or possibly even dropped altogether.

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