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Second degree drug crimes: What are they and what are the consequences

Posted by Eric Olson | Mar 10, 2015 | 0 Comments

In our previous blog we discussed the consequences a person could face if they are convicted of a first degree drug crime. We also looked at how a person can be charged with a first degree drug crime for selling or possessing a controlled substance.

So now that we've explored first degree drug crimes, how do second degree drug crimes differ? Let's take a look:

Sales crimes

The big difference between first and second degree drug crimes is volume. Under Minnesota State Law, a person is guilty of a controlled substance crime in the second degree if:

1. on one or more occasions within a 90-day period the person unlawfully sells one or more mixtures of a total weight of three grams or more containing cocaine, heroin or methamphetamine;

2. on one or more occasions within a 90-day period the person unlawfully sells one or more mixtures of a total weight of 10 grams or more containing a narcotic drug other than cocaine, heroin or methamphetamine;

3. on one or more occasions within a 90-day period the person unlawfully sells one or more mixtures of a total weight of 10 grams or more containing amphetamine, phencyclidine or hallucinogen or, if the controlled substance is packaged in dosage units, equaling 50 or more dosage units;

4. on one or more occasions within a 90-day period the person unlawfully sells one or more mixtures of a total weight of 25 kilograms or more containing marijuana or Tetrahydrocannabinols;

5. the person unlawfully sells any amount of a Schedule I or II narcotic drug to a person under the age of 18, or conspires with or employs a person under the age of 18 to unlawfully sell the substance; or

6. the person unlawfully sells any of the following in a school zone, a park zone, a public housing zone, or a drug treatment facility:

7. (i) any amount of a Schedule I or II narcotic drug, lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), 3,4-methylenedioxy amphetamine, or 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine;

8. (ii) one or more mixtures containing methamphetamine or amphetamine; or

9. (iii) one or more mixtures of a total weight of five kilograms or more containing marijuana or Tetrahydrocannabinols.

Possession crimes

Similar to sales crimes, second degree drug possession crimes are similar to first degree crimes but with lower volume. A person is guilty of a second degree drug crime if:

1. the person unlawfully possesses one or more mixtures of a total weight of six grams or more containing cocaine, heroin or methamphetamine;

2. the person unlawfully possesses one or more mixtures of a total weight of 50 grams or more containing a narcotic drug other than cocaine, heroin or methamphetamine;

3. the person unlawfully possesses one or more mixtures of a total weight of 50 grams or more containing amphetamine, phencyclidine, or hallucinogen or, if the controlled substance is packaged in dosage units, equaling 100 or more dosage units; or

4. the person unlawfully possesses one or more mixtures of a total weight of 50 kilograms or more containing marijuana or Tetrahydrocannabinols.

Consequences if convicted

Persons charged with second degree drug crimes face lesser penalites than first degree drug crimes but these charges are still felonies with stiff fines and the potential for a lengthy prison sentence. If you are charged with a second degree drug crime you could face the following penalites.

1. (a) A person convicted under subdivision 1 or 2 may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than 25 years or to payment of a fine of not more than $500,000, or both.

2. (b) If the conviction is a subsequent controlled substance conviction, a person convicted under subdivision 1 or 2 shall be committed to the commissioner of corrections for not less than three years nor more than 40 years and, in addition, may be sentenced to payment of a fine of not more than $500,000.

3. (c) In a prosecution under subdivision 1 involving sales by the same person in two or more counties within a 90-day period, the person may be prosecuted for all of the sales in any county in which one of the sales occurred.

If you are being charged with a second degree drug crime, you need experienced legal counsel. Contact Attorney Eric J. Olson for vigorous defense and unrivaled results.

About the Author

Eric Olson

Eric J. Olson has dedicated his career exclusively to criminal law, with a focus onDWI defense. For the past 16 years, Mr. Olson has developed a reputation in the legal community as an aggressive, compassionate advocate for his clients.

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