David L. McCormick

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Minnesota drug law and penalties

On Behalf of | Oct 28, 2021 | Drug Charges

Controlled substances endanger the person taking them, and even some legal substances are against the law without a valid prescription. A person in Minneapolis, Minnesota, can face several penalties if they are caught with controlled substances.

Minnesota drug laws

Minnesota assigns drug charges based on Schedule I to V, according to the risk of addiction potential. Schedules I and II are the most dangerous substances, but Schedule II drugs may have accepted medical uses. Possession is defined as having any of these drugs on the person with intent to sell or for personal use.

Trafficking involves the selling or distribution of controlled substances within the state or across state borders. Drug charges can classify as a misdemeanor or felony under one to five degrees, with the first degree being the most serious. Whether the charges count as a felony or misdemeanor will depend on the type of drug, amount, previous charges and any aggravating factors.

Drug penalties in Minnesota

First-degree possession of a controlled substance counts as a felony with a maximum 30-year prison term and up to a $1 million fine. This includes possessing at least 50 grams of cocaine or methamphetamines and 25 grams or more of heroin. Selling or possessing 100 grams or more of a controlled substance increases jail time to a maximum of 40 years.

Second-degree possession penalties are a maximum 25-year prison sentence, a $250,000 fine or both. This would be for possessing 10 grams of hallucinogens, 25 grams of cocaine or any amount in a drug-free zone.

Even the most minor offenses can have lasting effects for the defendant, which is why defendants have the right to fight the charges. The prosecution must prove that the defendant knowingly and willingly possessed the alleged substance, so mounting a defense may involve showing evidence to the contrary.