It is no secret that one of the toughest wars America fights is the one against drugs. Last year alone (2016), drug overdoses killed roughly 64,000 people in the United States, which is a significant increase as compared to 2015’s numbers of 52,404 drug-related deaths.
It is believed that these drug overdoses will continue to be the leading cause of death for Americans under 50 years old.
Leading the way in terms of the type of drug used is fentanyl and its analogs, which more than doubled its number of deaths since 2015. Other deaths have been linked to drugs like heroin, cocaine, and methamphetamine.
With drug use in America being categorized as an epidemic, there are also a lot of drug-related crimes. These crimes can range from possession to intent to distribute to trafficking.
- Possession – possession includes all illegal drugs/substances like marijuana, narcotics, cocaine, heroin or ever prescription drugs without a legal script.
- Intent to Distribute – when someone possesses enough of an illegal substance, it is safe to assume they would be selling drugs to others. Dealing drugs carry harsher punishments than possession and can vary based on the amount of drugs present.
- Drug Trafficking – drug trafficking embodies the manufacturing, cultivating and distribution of illegal drugs. It is a felony and carries sentences ranging from 3 years to life.
Other punishable offenses when it comes to drugs include the possession of drug paraphernalia, which is anything that facilitates drug use and/or any equipment used to make drugs. Examples of paraphernalia include syringes, bongs, pipes, grinders, blunts, etc.
With the drug epidemic sweeping across America, many states are profoundly affected, including New Jersey.
Heroin is one of many illegal substances that accounts for many deaths across the state. There are also many drug-related crimes committed in New Jersey as well.
Luckily, the state of New Jersey also practices a first-time offender diversionary program, which first-time offenders can take advantage of. This program aims to give first-time offenders – and those without prior crimes – the opportunity to avoid jail time.
If you or a loved one is facing drug charges in New Jersey — first time or not — you should seek out an experienced criminal defense lawyer. The law firm of Rudnick Addonizio, Pappa & Casazza PC has the experience to effectively protect your rights. Fill out our convenient online contact form or call 866-567-0135 to schedule your initial consultation today.
The articles on this blog are for informative purposes only and are no substitute for legal advice or an attorney/client relationship. If you are seeking legal advice, please contact our law firm directly.