When it comes to drug possession, Minnesota has some of the harshest criminal punishments of any state. When it comes to methamphetamines, the law is particularly strict in order to prevent this pervasive, addictive, and destructive drug from taking hold.
When you are arrested on meth possession, you will face four different degrees of charges that will dictate your punishment under Minnesota law. When deciding what degree your meth possession charge falls under size will matter and it can make all the difference with how strict your punishment will be.
The four degrees of meth possession include:
- First Degree – This is the strictest degree for meth possession. This degree is used when someone is has sold more than 10 grams of meth or possesses over 25 grams. As the highest degree of meth charge, those found guilty of this felony will face up to 30 years in prison as well as a maximum of $1 million dollar fine.
- Second Degree – This degree is actually comparable to first degree charges in that it is a felony and it comes with serious punishments. If you possess between six to 25 grams of methamphetamine or sold between three to ten grams, you will face a punishment of up to 25 years of prison and a $500,000 fine.
- Third Degree – For sale of methamphetamine, this is the minimum degree you will face. However, if you possessed between three to six grams of meth, you will also be facing punishments for this degree. If you fall into this category, you can be given a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
- Fourth Degree – If you had an empty bag of meth in your car or in your pocket with just a few small crumbs inside, you will still face punishment. Fourth degree meth possession is for possession any small amount of the substance, but it comes with big punishments. Any small of meth can merit a maximum of 15 years in prison or a $100,000 fine.
Fighting Meth Possession Charges
As you can see, any small possession of meth comes with huge consequences. As such, you need to take steps to effectively fight these charges. When it comes to a meth defense, there are three primary strategies.
Evidence is crucial to every criminal case. On some cases of meth possession or sale, the evidence can be argued that it was found under a flawed search. If you were, for example, walking down the street, an officer cannot just stop and search you to look for drugs for no reason. They need to have probable cause that something illegal was happening. The key here is for your lawyer to argue enough to suppress the evidence.
Entrapment is common in drug cases. You may be sitting around and an undercover cop may pester you incessantly to sell them drugs. You could have been in possession, but they may not have known that, thus they enticed you to commit a crime.
This strategy can minimize the impact of drug charges. During the case, it can be argued that those drugs were not actually yours. This is easier to argue if they were found in a home or a car, especially if the home or car were not your own. However, typically possession is a difficult route to take, thus lawyers will want to explore all other options first.
Were you caught in possession of methamphetamines in the Minneapolis area? Contact us today to see what Judith A. Samson, Attorney at Law can do for you. We are dedicated to being Minnesota’s defenders to make sure you don’t face the harsh punishments.
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