cocaine possession
LexInter | November 8, 2021 | 0 Comments

Texas Laws And Penalties For Cocaine Possession And Distribution

The state of Texas has some of the strictest laws in the country for cocaine possession. In fact, there is no misdemeanor charge for cocaine possession—all cases are charged at the felony level.

This means that being in possession of even a single gram of cocaine can not only result in a hefty fine but also a substantial prison sentence. For this reason, it’s vital that if you’re facing cocaine possession charges that you don’t drag your feet. You should reach out to an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as you’re arrested.

Texas Cocaine Possession Charges

Texas Cocaine Possession Charges

According to the Texas Health and Safety Code 481.115, those caught with cocaine can be charged as long as they had “actual care, custody, control or management” of the substance. The punishments for cocaine possession and/or distribution depend on the amount of cocaine a person has on them at the time of their arrest.

  • < 1 gram. Less than 1 gram of cocaine can face a state jail felony, which carries 6 months to 2 years in prison.
  • 1 gram to less than 4 grams. Possession/distribution between these amounts of cocaine is a third-degree felony, which carries with it fines up to $10,000 and upward of 10 years in prison.
  • 4 grams to less than 200 grams. Possession/distribution between these amounts of cocaine is a second-degree felony, which carries with it fines up to $10,000 and upward of 10 years in prison.
  • 200 grams to less than 400 grams. Possession/distribution between these amounts of cocaine is a first-degree felony, which carries with it fines up to $100,000 and between 10 and 99 years in prison.
  • >400 grams. Possession/distribution between these amounts of cocaine is a first-degree felony, which carries with it fines up to $250,000 and between 15 and 99 years in prison.

second-degree felony

Strategies For Cocaine Possession Defense In Texas

There’s no denying that the penalties surrounding cocaine are severe.

If you’ve been caught in possession of or selling cocaine, what are your next steps?

Strategies For Cocaine Possession Defense In Texas

Common defense strategies for cocaine possession include:

  • Being unaware that the drugs were in your possession. This strategy is often employed when the defendant was arrested in a home or vehicle that is shared by more than just them. In this situation, a prosecutor will need to show enough evidence that every occupant in the home or vehicle possessed the cocaine, which can prove difficult.
  • Illegal search and seizure. The Fourth Amendment affords all Americans the right to privacy, which means in order to search your person, your home, or your vehicle, a police officer needs to either have a search warrant or a reasonable suspicion. Without either of these, any evidence (i.e. cocaine) obtained is not admissible in court.
  • First-time felony. If your arrest for cocaine possession or distribution is your first felony, you could be granted deferred adjudication. This is a type of plea deal that means you exchange community service, drug counseling, and probation for not contesting your charges.

If you or a loved one faces cocaine charges in Texas, you need an experienced lawyer in your corner to ensure your rights are defended.

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