That charge actually is pretty common here. A production of marijuana charge applies to anything from a couple of plants in a garage to growth of a commercial size. A lot of times it means to manufacture, plant, cultivate, grow, and harvest, and it’s unlawful for a person to do any of those things here in Utah.
What is the Difference Between Possession With Intent to Distribute and Production of a Controlled Substance?
The possession or use of a controlled substance charge is used for someone who is a user. There’s a little more leniency for someone who possesses it for their own consumption. Production is a felony level charge, but for small amounts of marijuana the courts also see the drug as a disease. If the person is willing to get help and some treatment to get over the issue, I see a lot of leeway in working with them and avoiding jail time by enrolling them in diversion programs. If they complete the treatment and stop using, then sometimes the charges can be dismissed or reduced to misdemeanors.
On the other hand, the person that’s charged with possession with intent to distribute might not necessarily be a user. They’re distributing with the intent to make money; it’s a business. The courts handle those cases more severely. It’s the same with the production of a controlled substance. You are producing this controlled substance to distribute it, to make money, to make a profit. Sometimes along with that come a lot of other types of crime. There is less sympathy from the prosecutors depending on which county you’re in and the prosecutor you are dealing with.
How Do I Know if I Might Be Facing Jail Time for My Charge?
If it’s a drug charge other than a class B misdemeanor– simple possession of marijuana– in most cases they can expect a minimum of thirty days in jail, and it just goes up from there. I have seen cases where they go up to as much as a hundred and eighty days depending on the charge and the circumstances. If the individual’s facing something other than the class B misdemeanor marijuana charge, they can probably expect jail time if they just walk in there and plead guilty or try to work the case for themselves.
Does Sentencing Work the Same With All Sorts of Drug Charges?
It usually does with marijuana. Quantity does become an issue because in those cases; the more that you are in possession of, the statutes set out harsher penalties for the more you have. Less than an ounce of marijuana is a class B misdemeanor, but less than 16 ounces would be a class A misdemeanor which is the next higher, meaning you can get up to a year in jail versus six months. If you have 16 ounces but less than a hundred pounds, it’s a third degree felony; a hundred pounds or more would be a second degree felony, which would be one to fifteen years in prison.
If you’re caught with more than 16 ounces of marijuana, you could be also looking at a distribution charge. If you possess this much, then it’s with the intent to distribute because you’re certainly not going to use that much marijuana yourself in a reasonable amount of time. It is based on what the prosecutor wants to do with the case; if you have more than an ounce and it looks like you’re bagging it and breaking it down, they’re going to charge you with distribution which is the third degree felony even though possession of that much would just be a class A misdemeanor.
For more information on Charges related to the Mass Production of Marijuana, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you’re seeking by calling (801) 554-5220 today.