Drug Crime Terminology – Las Vegas Criminal Defense Lawyer

Drug crimes can range from minor and moderate to serious and your sentence depends upon the severity of your drug crime and the federal/state statutes of the drug crime. In order to fully understand the severity of a drug crime, you should be familiar with the terminology associated with drug crimes. Below you’ll find a list of drug crime terminology and their definitions.

Controlled Substance – A controlled substance is defined as a substance whose use and distribution is governed by law. Controlled substances are classified by different levels under federal and state statutes. Controlled substances include drugs like steroids and marijuana.

Distribution – Distribution as a drug charge typically translates to a person accused of selling or delivering controlled substances through illegal means. Distribution charges come about when a drug dealer attempts to sell drugs to an undercover officer.

Trafficking – Trafficking is defined as the illegal sale and distribution of a controlled substance. Unlike other types of trafficking, drug trafficking has more to do with the amount of drugs involved when crossing state lines.

Manufacturing – Manufacturing, as defined by federal and state drug laws, is the cultivation or manufacturing of a controlled substance.

Possession – Possession is self-explanatory. Possession of a controlled substance is the most common drug charge made in arrests under local drug laws. There are different types of possessions: Actual possession, constructive possession, and simple possession. Actual possession depicts a situation in which the drugs are on their person while constructive possession depicts a situation in which the defendant doesn’t have the drugs on their person, but a possession charge is still possible under the premise that the defendant had access to the drugs. Simple possession depicts a situation in which the defendant is found in possession of a small amount of controlled substances.

On the subject of possession, drug paraphernalia like syringes or pipes can lead to being charged with a felony/misdemeanor since it is illegal to possess paraphernalia intended or associated with drug use.

Diversion – Diversion is a process that many states allow for first time offenders charged with simple possession of drugs. Diversion allows first time offenders to keep a clean criminal record by pleading guilty and completing a prescribed substance abuse program.

Getting charged with a drug crime and being convicted of a drug offense in Las Vegas will leave you with a criminal record and change your life. If you’ve been charged with a drug crime, contact a Las Vegas Criminal Defense attorney for help on your case.