212-300-5196

Service & Results.

nyc criminal lawyers over 30 years of experienceWe Know How To Win Cases

Spodek Law Group handles tough cases
nationwide, that demand excellence.

Get Free Consultation

Faced 5+ Years in Prison

People Vs Joseph Amico

Covered by NYDaily News. Las Vegas man accused of threatening a prominent attorney and making vile remarks.

Faced 10+ Years in Prison

People Vs. Anna Sorokin

Covered by New York Times, and other outlets. Fake heiress accused of conning the city’s wealthy, and has an HBO special being made about her.

Faced 3+ Years in Prison

People Vs. Genevieve Sabourin

Accused of stalking Alec Baldwin. The case garnered nationwide attention, with USAToday, NYPost, and other media outlets following it closely.

Faced Potential Charges

Ghislaine Maxwell Juror

Juror who prompted calls for new Ghislaine Maxwell trial turns to lawyer who defended Anna Sorokin.

Spodek
Law in the Media

View All

Request Free Consultation

Please fill out the form below to receive a free consultation, we will respond to
your inquiry within 24-hours guaranteed.

NYC Fifth Degree Controlled Substance Possession Lawyers

Confusion exists in New York state about the ramifications of possession of a controlled substance. Persons charged with a felony may find themselves shocked to see such severe charges levied at them. Often, people believe that recreational drugs won’t get them into as much trouble. They do not understand how the law works or what the statutes say. For example, depending on the amount a person possesses, the charges could be brought up as misdemeanors or as felonies. Other factors can lead to possession rising to the felony level, and not all felonies are the same, either. Felonies rank in degrees with crimes becoming more severe as the numerical order decreases.

Sale of a Controlled Substance

Under the law, a person may face charges of Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Fifth Degree when he/she possesses a drug intending to sell; or, he/she possesses a specific amount of a particular drug. If the intent is “to sell,” then the amount of the drug does not matter.

Also, defendants must be aware that “to sell” does not only refer to the exchange of money, goods, or services for drugs. “Sell” also includes giving someone drugs or disposing of drugs to another person. A person can face this charge even when offering or agreeing to do any of the definitions of “sell.”

Please see “PEN § 220.00 Controlled substances; definitions” for more information.

Possession of a Controlled Substance: Fifth Degree

Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Fifth Degree is the first felony level of drug possession. A Fifth Degree Felony represents a Class D felony. The law defines the circumstances of possession definitively, so there is no ambiguity about the statute. Further clarification about Fifth Degree Possession appears in the New York Penal Law § 220.06.

The Amounts Related to Fifth Degree Charges

New York state law also defines specific felony possession charges based on the amount of a particular drug. One controlled substance may be a felony at a lower amount than what is the case with another drug. Generally, the amount required for the first felony level is 1/2 of an ounce or more. The New York Penal Code lists the following drugs and their corresponding amounts as Class D/Fifth Degree felonies:

  • PCP – 50 mg and above.
  • Concentrated cannabis – 1/4 ounce or more.
  • Cocaine – 500 mg or more.
  • GHB – 28 g or more.
  • Ketamine – 1000 mg or more.

A person can also be charged with a Class D felony/Fifth Degree Possession if they possess ketamine and have a previous conviction for ketamine possession or the attempt to possess ketamine. The amount does not matter when prior convictions come into play.

Understanding Possession of a Controlled Substance

The law details the definitions of what is a controlled substance and what constitutes possession. Generally, a controlled substance refers to an illegal drug or a drug that is illegal to possess without a prescription. The federal government maintained a scheduled list of controlled substances.

Definitive elements exist with the legal definition of “possession.” In general terms, a person must knowingly and unlawfully maintain physical possession or dominion or control over tangible property. The statutes go into further detail about possession and corresponding elements.

If a person has a controlled drug in his/her shirt pocket, this will likely constitute possession. Possession may also refer to someone who knowingly has controlled substances in the basement of his/her home even though he/she was in the living room when arrested, as he/she maintains control or dominion over the property in the house. However, if the controlled substance requires a prescription, and the person has a prescription for the drug in the prescribed amount, then the possession is lawful.

Be aware the above example is a broad illustration of examples of possession of a controlled substance and is not a substitute for legal advice.

Defenses for Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Fifth Degree

The defenses for criminal possession of drugs can range. An attorney may prove that the person charged did not possess any drugs, or he/she legally possessed them. Under certain circumstances, the attorney could argue entrapment or even bring up the statute of limitations — anyone charged with possession benefits from discussing the specifics of a case with legal counsel.

An attorney could approach the charges in many ways, including going to trial and pleading not guilty, pleading guilty to lesser charges, and so on. An attorney can also argue for preferable sentencing if found guilty.

Ultimately, anyone facing misdemeanor or felony charges may wish to seek out qualified counsel to discuss representation and defense strategies.

Free Consultation

Testimonials

I was searching for a law firm with some power to help me deal with a warrant in New York . After 6 days I decided to go with Spodek Law Group. It helped that This law firm is well respected by not only the top law firms in New York , but the DA , Judge as well. I...

~Fonder Brandon

5 Stars
It was my good fortune to retain Spodek Law Group for representation for my legal needs. From the beginning, communication was prompt and thorough. Todd, Kenneth and Alex were the first people I worked with and they all made me feel comfortable and confident that the team was going to work hard for me. Everything was explained and any concerns...

~A G

5 Stars
After meeting with several law firms, I chose the Spodek Law Group not only for their professionalism and experience, but for the personal attention given to me right from the initial consultation. It is important to recognize how crucial having the right legal team is when faced with potentially life altering events that impact families and the lives of loved...

~George Cherubini

Spodek Law Group

White Glove Service

We Provide Superior Service, Excellent Results, At A Level Superior To Other Criminal Defense Law Firms. Regardless Of Where Your Case Is, Nationwide, We Can Help You.
View More

Request Free Consultation

Please fill out the form below to receive a free consultation, we will respond to
your inquiry within 24-hours guaranteed.

NYC

85 Broad St 30th Floor, New York, NY 10004

212-300-5196

get directions

Los Angeles

611 S Catalina St Suite 222, Los Angeles, CA 90005

212-300-5196

get directions

QUEENS

35-37 36th St, 2nd Floor Astoria, NY 11106

212-300-5196

get directions

BROOKLYN

195 Montague St., 14th Floor, Brooklyn, NY 11201

212-300-5196

get directions
Call Now!