Choose Wisely: Penalties for Possession in Minnesota Vary by Drug

Choose Wisely: Penalties for Possession in Minnesota Vary by Drug

Drug possession is one of the most common criminal charges in Minnesota, but not all drug possession charges are created equal. Depending on the type and amount of drugs that you are charged with having, it can be an incredibly serious offense. One that comes with harsh criminal penalties and will leave you with a criminal record that will come back to haunt you.

Below we’re going to break down the five degrees of drug possession in Minnesota, and the criminal penalties you could face if convicted of this drug crime.

Controlled Substance Crime in the Fifth Degree

The following acts are considered drug possession in the fifth degree, which is punishable by up to five years in prison and fines of up to $10,000:

  • Possession of a controlled substance in Schedule I, II, III, or IV, except for marijuana under 42.5 grams.
  • Procuring or attempting to procure a prescription controlled substance by fraudulent means.

A subsequent offense is punishable by six months-10 years in prison in addition to fines.

Controlled Substance Crime in the Fourth Degree

Possession of the following substances in the listed amounts is considered drug possession in the fourth degree, which is punishable by up to 15 years in prison and a fine of up to $100,000:

  • 10-50 grams or units of amphetamine, phencyclidine, or hallucinogenic drugs
  • Possession of a controlled substance classified in Schedule I, II, or III (except marijuana or THC concentrate) with the intent to distribute.

A subsequent offense is punishable by 1-30 years of imprisonment in addition to fines.

Controlled Substance Crime in the Third Degree

Possession of the following substances in the listed amounts is considered drug possession in the third degree, which is punishable by up to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000:

  • 43 grams – 9.9 kilograms of marijuana, or the equivalent in THC concentrate
  • 10-50 grams or units of amphetamine, phencyclidine, or hallucinogenic drugs
  • Under six grams of heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine, or any combination thereof
  • Under 10 grams of any narcotic not mentioned above

A subsequent offense is punishable by up to 30 years in prison in addition to fines.

Controlled Substance Crime in the Second Degree

Possession of the following substances in the listed amounts is considered drug possession in the second degree, which is punishable by up to 25 years in prison and a fine of up to $500,000:

  • 10-99 kilograms of marijuana or the equivalent in THC concentrate
  • 50-499 grams or units of amphetamine, phencyclidine, or hallucinogenic drugs
  • 6-24 grams of heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine, or any combination thereof
  • 10-499 grams of any narcotic not mentioned above

A subsequent offense is punishable by up to 40 years’ imprisonment in addition to fines.

Controlled Substance Crime in the First Degree

Anoka Drug Lawyer

Possession of the following substances in the listed amounts is considered drug possession in the first degree, which is punishable by up to 30 years in prison and fine of up to $1,000,000:

  • 100+ kilograms of marijuana or the equivalent in THC concentrate
  • 500+ grams or units of amphetamine, phencyclidine, or hallucinogenic drugs
  • 25+ grams of heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine, or any combination thereof
  • 500+ grams of any narcotic not mentioned above

A second or more violation is punishable by up to 40 years’ imprisonment in addition to fines.

As you can see, drugs are not just drugs. Even a small amount of some of the more “serious” substances can result in life-altering penalties. That’s why it’s important to be aware of the laws, and to be proactive in fighting back against any and all drug possession charges.

 

About the Author:

A former prosecutor and lifelong Minnesotan, Christian Peterson has handled hundreds of criminal cases from both sides of the aisle since he began practicing law in 2006, as well as a wide variety of family law matters. This background allows him to look at situations from all angles and anticipate which arguments the other side may use, increasing his clients’ chances of success. His work has been recognized by the American Society of Legal Advocates, the National Academy of Family Law Attorneys, and National Trial Lawyers, and he has a perfect 10/10 rating from Avvo.