What could happen with a first-time drug conviction?

On Behalf of | Nov 4, 2021 | Drug Crimes

A drug charge is serious, even if it is for a minor infraction. It can bring with it many sanctions and punishments that can impact your life now and into the future.

According to the University of Wisconsin, you may face state and federal sanctions for a drug conviction.

State penalties

Under state penalties for a first-time conviction, you could get up to one year in prison. You may also face a fine of up to $5,000. Your exact sentence depends on the type of substance, your criminal history and other factors the judge wants to take into account. If you have charges for manufacturing or selling, the penalties could be stiffer with up to 30 years in prison and a fine of up to $1,000,000.

Federal penalties

Federal law has some mandatory minimum sentences. This means the judge has no discretion in what sentence to give you because the law states a minimum sentence the judge must impose. These sentences vary depending on the substance and other factors of your charge.

You could face up to six years in prison for possession or selling drugs. If your charge involves a large amount of a drug, then you could face up to 16 years in prison, and if your drug charge relates to the death or injury of another person, the penalty could be life in prison.

Generally, though, a first-time conviction will result in up to one year in prison and a fine of up to $100,000. However, if your charge is for at least five grams of crack cocaine, the minimum sentence is at least five years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.

In addition to these penalties, the court may be able to seize your personal property, real estate and vehicles. You may be ineligible for financial aid benefits and lose your right to own and possess a firearm.

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