January 12, 2024 By Wallin & Klarich

Drug Possession Defense | PC 11350

If you or someone you know has been charged with drug possession in California, it’s important to understand the laws and potential defenses available. In this document, we will provide an overview of drug possession defense under PC 11350. 

Choosing Wallin & Klarich to represent your case puts you in a better position to receive the best outcome for your case. We have over 40 years of experience in Southern California. Call us today at (877) 4-NO-JAIL for your free consultation!

What is Drug Possession?  

In California, drug possession is defined as an individual having in their possession a controlled substance without a valid prescription. A ‘controlled substance’ refers to any drug that is regulated by the state.

California’s controlled substances schedule includes a wide range of drugs, including:

  • Cocaine
  • Heroin
  • Methamphetamine
  • LSD
  • Ecstasy
  • Prescription opioids (such as OxyContin and Vicodin)

Being found in possession of any of these drugs, as well as any other controlled substance listed in the schedule, can result in a drug possession charge.

Possession is not limited to having the drugs on your person, such as in your pocket or in your hand. In California, possession also includes having drugs in areas you control, such as your home, car, or even a locker at your gym. Simply put, if the prosecution can prove that you exercised control, management, or had the right to control the drug, whether directly or through another person, it is considered possession.

What the Prosecution Must Prove 

In order to convict someone of drug possession under PC 11350, the prosecution must prove three key elements beyond a reasonable doubt:

  • The defendant had control or ownership of the controlled substance
  • The substance was, in fact, a controlled substance
  • The defendant knew they were possessing a controlled substance

Possible Penalties

Drug possession charges can carry severe penalties in California. Under Health and Safety Code 11350, drug possession for personal use is usually considered a misdemeanor, which can result in up to a year in county jail and a fine of up to $1,000. However, if you have prior convictions for serious felonies or certain drug offenses, you could be charged with a felony and face up to three years in prison.

In addition to potential jail time and fines, a drug possession conviction can have serious collateral consequences. It can affect your ability to secure employment, obtain housing, and may result in the loss of certain professional licenses. Moreover, if you are not a U.S. citizen, a drug possession conviction could affect your immigration status.

Remember that California law also provides for alternative sentencing options such as drug diversion programs, which can help eligible defendants avoid jail time and a criminal record. These programs typically require participation in a drug education or treatment program. It is crucial to consult with a skilled defense attorney who can help you explore all possible options and strategies in your case.

Possible Defenses

There are several potential defenses that an experienced defense attorney can use to fight drug possession charges in California. These may include:

  • Illegal Search and Seizure: If law enforcement obtained the drugs through an illegal search or seizure, the evidence may be deemed inadmissible in court.
  • Lack of Knowledge: If the defendant did not know they were possessing a controlled substance, they may have a viable defense.
  • Valid Prescription: If the defendant had a valid prescription for the controlled substance, they cannot be convicted of drug possession.

How a Defense Attorney

A skilled defense attorney can help you build a strong defense against drug possession charges. They will thoroughly investigate the facts of your case, review the evidence, and work to find weaknesses in the prosecution’s case. They can also negotiate with the prosecution for a reduced charge or sentence, or argue for alternative sentencing options such as drug diversion programs.

At Wallin & Klarich, you will never be left wondering what will happen next with your case. Our attorneys will help you through each step of the process, and figure out the best strategy for your case, which will help you get the best possible outcome. Our attorneys at Wallin & Klarich are here to help you. We offer exceptional service, experience, and affordable payment options to help you manage the cost of hiring a defense attorney. Call our office today for a free consultation!

Contact Wallin & Klarich Today 

If you are facing drug possession charges, you need an aggressive defense attorney to fight for your freedom. With 40+ years of experience, our attorneys at Wallin & Klarich have helped thousands of clients win their cases or get their charges reduced to a lesser degree. We know the most effective defenses to argue on your behalf, and we will do everything in our power to help you achieve the best possible result in your case. 

You may not be aware of all your options. Calling our office costs you nothing, but picking up the phone could be the difference between years in prison and years of freedom. Let our skilled attorneys examine your case to find the best way to avoid prison.

Discover how our team can assist you. Contact us today, toll-free at (877) 4-NO-JAIL or (877) 466-5245 for a free consultation with a skilled defense attorney.

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