Ocean Twp. NJ Cocaine Distribution Defense Lawyers
Under New Jersey law, cocaine distribution is addressed under the same statute as offenses for manufacturing cocaine and possessing cocaine with the intent to distribute. This statute, found in section N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5 of the New Jersey Criminal Code, delineates the degree of these charges and their associated penalties based on the amount, specifically, the measured weight, of the cocaine involved in the alleged offense.
In other words, if police executed a search warrant at your home, discovered over 5 ounces of cocaine, and charged you with possession of cocaine with intent to distribute, you may be sentenced to serve up to 20 years in New Jersey State Prison, with a mandatory minimum term of between one-third and one-half of the sentence imposed during which you are ineligible for parole. On the other hand, if you are stopped by police after an alleged drug transaction and the suspected buyer is found with less than one-half of an ounce, you may be sentenced to serve between 3 and 5 years in New Jersey State Prison. Although charges related to cocaine distribution and cocaine possession with intent to distribute can vary significantly, these offenses are always considered indictable felonies, meaning they are adjudicated at the Superior Court in the county in which the alleged crime occurred and may result in a felony conviction on your criminal record.
The highly experienced criminal defense attorneys at Chamlin, Rosen, Uliano & Witherington have been dedicated to defending those accused of cocaine distribution and other crimes in Monmouth County since the firm opened its doors over 5 decades ago. Guided by partner Charles J. Uliano, who is one of the only 43 attorneys (out of 80,000) in the state of New Jersey who hold dual Certifications from the New Jersey Supreme Court in both Civil and Criminal Law, we have the knowledge and resources to position our clients for the best possible outcome. To speak with a member of our criminal defense team today, contact our West Long Branch office at 732-440-3950.
Manufacturing, Distributing, or Dispensing Cocaine in New Jersey: N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5
Under New Jersey Law, controlled dangerous substances are classified according to a system that separates these substances into a series of schedules, numbered from I (one) to V (five). Cocaine is classified as a Schedule II drug, which means that it: (1) has high potential for abuse; (2) has currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States, or currently accepted medical use with severe restrictions; and that (3) abuse may lead to severe psychic or physical dependence.
According to N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5:
a. Except as authorized by P.L.1970, c.226 (C.24:21-1), it shall be unlawful for any person knowingly or purposely:
(1) To manufacture, distribute or dispense, or to possess or have under his control with intent to manufacture, distribute or dispense, a controlled dangerous substance or controlled substance analog; or
(2) To create, distribute, or possess or have under his control with intent to distribute, a counterfeit controlled dangerous substance.
b. Any person who violates subsection a. with respect to:
(1) Heroin, or its analog, or coca leaves and any salt, compound, derivative, or preparation of coca leaves, and any salt, compound, derivative, or preparation thereof which is chemically equivalent or identical with any of these substances, or analogs, except that the substances shall not include decocainized coca leaves or extractions which do not contain cocaine or ecogine, or 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine or 3,4-methylenedioxyamphetamine, in a quantity of five ounces or more including any adulterants or dilutants is guilty of a crime of the First Degree. The defendant shall, except as provided in N.J.S.2C:35-12 (Waiver of Mandatory Minimum and Extended Terms), be sentenced to a term of imprisonment by the court. The term of imprisonment shall include the imposition of a minimum term which shall be fixed at, or between, one-third and one-half of the sentence imposed, during which the defendant shall be ineligible for parole. A fine of up to $500,000.00 may be imposed;
(2) A substance referred to in paragraph (1) of this subsection, in a quantity of one-half ounce or more but less than five ounces, including any adulterants or dilutants is guilty of a crime of the Second Degree;
(3) A substance referred to in paragraph (1) of this subsection, in a quantity of less than one-half ounce including any adulterants or dilutants is guilty of a crime of the Third Degree. A fine of up to $75,000.00 may be imposed.
Penalties for Cocaine Distribution in New Jersey
Cocaine Distribution as a First Degree Crime: punishable by a term of incarceration ranging from 10 to 20 years in New Jersey State Prison and a maximum fine of $500,000
Cocaine Distribution as a Second Degree Crime: punishable by a term of incarceration ranging from 5 to 10 years in New Jersey State Prison, as well as a maximum fine of $150,000
Cocaine Distribution as a Third Degree Crime: punishable by a term of incarceration ranging from 3 to 5 years in New Jersey State Prison, as well as a maximum fine of $75,000
Contact Monmouth County NJ Cocaine Distribution Attorneys Today
The consequences of a conviction for distributing cocaine in New Jersey extend far beyond a prison sentence, with the potential to permanently damage your reputation, hinder your future employment prospects, and deter you ability to reach your full potential personally, professionally, and financially. You are, however, entitled to the most vigorous defense afforded under the law. At Chamlin, Rosen, Uliano & Witherington, we pride ourselves on the unparalleled legal representation that only 50-plus years of experienced can provide. Call to learn more about how we will work toward protecting your future. Our West Long Branch office can be reached at 732-440-3950.