Persons arrested on cocaine charges may discover Ohio laws prove to be stringent. All drug arrests come with consequences, but charges related to the sale or possession of cocaine could be far more severe than those associated with minute amounts of marijuana. Besides the potential for a permanent criminal record and heavy fines, a cocaine-related conviction might result in several years in prison.
Cocaine charges in Ohio
Cocaine charges could involve not only possession and sale but also trafficking. The amount of cocaine factors into the harshness of the charges and potential sentences. For example, someone who possesses 5 to 25 grams of cocaine would face 5th-degree felony charges and a minimum of 6 months of jail time with a 12-month maximum sentence. Anyone convicted of possessing 1000 grams would face a three-year minimum and an 11-year maximum.
Selling 5 to 10 grams of cocaine may lead to a 5th-degree felony conviction, while anyone over 1,000 grams yields a 1st-degree felony. Persons convicted of cocaine possession or sale may pay fines ranging from $2,500 to $20,000.
Facing cocaine charges in an Ohio court
Several questions could arise during a criminal defense of cocaine charges. A pertinent question centers on whether the defendant intended to sell the drugs or were they for personal use. Another vital question could ask whether the drugs truly belonged to the defendant and did the defendant maintain any control over cocaine.
The police’s behavior may come under scrutiny. If law enforcement lacked probable cause or a necessary warrant, the evidence procured during the arrest could be inadmissible.
Plea bargaining might be advisable in some cases, depending on the evidence. Similarly, it may be possible to ask for leniency in sentencing based on the defendant’s past history.