Drug crime laws in America

drug crime law

Federal Drug Crimes

Countries such as the United States of America have long since realized the constant increase of Federal drug crimes as well as those committed at the state level. There has been constant increase in the number of drug related cases that are brought to court annually. Additionally they must protect their borders and ports from being infiltrated by the trade of these illicit substances as such they have developed polices and laws to deter and detain individuals, who distribute, use or manufacture these substances.


One such policy that has been developed is the Controlled Substance Act, CSA. This act proscribes the manufacturing, distribution or use of illicit drugs. Controlled drugs are those that have laws stipulating how they can or cannot be used or possessed. Illicit substance related cases are normally heard at either the state or federal level. Normally, larger quantities of drugs are dealt with at the federal rather than state level and as such receive much harsher penalties. This act also stipulates unique penalties for cases involving distribution to a minor or using a minor to distribute drugs. Drug crime law usually looks at two specific areas.



Under federal and state law in the US it is illegal for individuals to willfully possess or distribute illicit drugs. Substances such as marijuana, heroine and cocaine are considered illicit under federal law.  If incarcerated fro drug possession individuals may be slapped with one of two charges either simple or personal possession or possession with the intent to distribute. Normally the later offence receives harsher punishments

Police official must be able to prove however that the arrested individual was in fact aware that the individual knowingly had the substance on their person in order for the individual to be convicted of simple possession. Intent to sell can be proven if the individual was found with large quantities of small notes, bags or large amounts of the drug.

Material associated with drug use is also prohibited therefore it is against the law for individuals can be arrested if they are found with crack pipes, syringes or marijuana bongs. Chemicals used in the manufacturing or development of drugs such as methamphetamine is also prohibited.

Possession laws in the U.S allow the use of certain substances such as marijuana in certain states however individuals who are arrested must be able to provide substantial evidence such as documented proof of recommendation from a doctor.



Federal laws generally indicate the appropriate sentencing time depending on the quantity and type of drug trafficked. Other factors such as criminal history, weapon possession and injury to other civilians are also taken into account during sentencing.  Trafficking near schools, crossing state or national borders may also be taken into consideration.

Trafficking encompasses the manufacturing, import and export and distribution of drugs. Normally this activity is carried out on a large scale for long periods of time and usually involves a number of individuals.

For a substance such as marijuana federal drug trafficking laws, individuals may receive fine of up to $ 4miilion dollars or 10 years to life in prison for trafficking a thousand kilo grams. Note this is only for the first offense. For smaller quantities such as 50 kilo grams arrested individuals may receive a sentence of up to 20 year imprisonment.

Though the CSA provides laws that prohibit trafficking, many conspirators were able to escape being prosecuted due to a loop hole in the aforementioned policy. However in 2011 another policy was tabled which makes it illegal to aid, abet or attempt to traffic drugs from either on or off American soil.

A drug related conviction could result in an individual loosing their job or result in them becoming unable to keep or receive loans. People who were previously convicted of a drug related crime are also not eligible to work in law enforcement and can be denied public housing. Often individuals are discriminated against simply because of their criminal history. Some are denied schooling and as such find it hard to ever be fully rehabilitated into the society even when the incident occurred in their formative years. Recognizing the negative impact that being arrested of a drug related crime can have on people’s life individuals must be focused on making the right decisions. Note that Laws that govern illicit substances vary from state to state. Individuals must therefore familiarize themselves with these laws as even being around drugs can sometimes result in a conviction. On the other hand individuals should be more concerned with making the right decision rather than using the law to protect their habits. Also, some state might allow the expungement of crimes or misdemeanors depending on the degree of the felony.

Laws that govern trade and use of drugs have become necessary in almost every country. As the global drug trade continues to expand, new polices must be developed and old ones amended. Though drug crime law varies from state to state, the ones at the federal level remain constant unless amended or revised. Crimes involving larger quantities of illegal substances are often time but not always dealt with at the state level. Individuals must familiarize themselves with these laws in the vent that they must use them in their defense. However making the right decisions and choices should be the first priority of every individual as it relates to drugs.

About Angela

Hello, Cyber world! I currently work as the Web Content Editor for the Expunge Center page and through my whole life writing and blogging has been in my Top priorities.

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