Pittsburgh Drug Trafficking Lawyer

The mere possession of any controlled substance is a misdemeanor in Pennsylvania. Defendants charged in PA with possession of a controlled substance with the intention of distributing or selling the drug will face much more serious felony charges.

The police do not have to catch you in the act of selling drugs to charge you with a felony drug crime. They often rely on circumstantial evidence, including the amount of drugs found in your possession or the presence of items commonly related to drug sales, including large amounts of cash, scales, stamp bags, or other packaging.

Mandatory Minimum Sentences in PA

The sale of controlled substance is a serious offense with extremely harsh penalties. The severity of the punishment depends on a number of factors, including the types of drugs involved, the amount by weight, and a defendant’s criminal history. In some cases, criminal court Defendants in Pennsylvania face mandatory minimum sentences, which require the judge to sentence them to mandatory prison time regardless of their past criminal history. For example, drug delivery resulting in death will result in five years of incarceration. Possessing drugs with intent to deliver in a school zone will result in three years of incarceration. Possession of large quantities of any particular drug will also result in mandatory minimum sentences, as the following tables illustrate:

Marijuana:

WeightMandatory Minimum Sentence – First ConvictionMinimum Mandatory Sentence – Subsequent Conviction
2 lbs. to < 10 lbs

or

10 to 20 live plants

1 year2 years
10 lbs. to < 50 lbs.

or

21 to 51 live plants

3 years4 years
More than 50 lbs. or more than 50 plants5 years5 years

Heroin

WeightMandatory Minimum Sentence – First ConvictionMandatory Minimum Sentence – Subsequent Conviction
1 gram to < 5 grams2 years3 years
5 grams to < 50 grams3 years5 years
50 grams or more5 years7 years

Cocaine

WeightMandatory Minimum Sentence – First ConvictionMandatory Minimum Sentence – Subsequent Conviction
2 grams to < 10 grams1 year3 years
10 grams < 100 grams3 years5 years
100 grams or more4 years7 years

Methamphetamine / Phencyclidine

WeightMandatory Minimum Sentence – First ConvictionMandatory Minimum Sentence – Subsequent Conviction
5 grams to < 10 grams3 years5 years
10 grams to < 100 grams4 years7 years
100 grams or more5 years8 years

Contact an experienced Pennsylvania criminal defense attorney

If you or a loved one has been charged with possession with intent to deliver or drug trafficking in western Pennsylvania, contact one of the experienced criminal defense attorneys at Lisa Marie Vari & Associates today.  With offices located in downtown Pittsburgh, Cranberry Township and Southepointe (Canonsburg), our experienced Pennsylvania defense lawyers are available to meet at the location of your choice.  Contact us today at 412-281-9906 or 1-844-VARI-LAW (1-844-VARI-LAW ).