Ohio laws outlines offenses called "Aggravated Possession of Drugs" and "Aggravated Trafficking" when the illegal substance is a drug that is not heroin, cocaine, marijuana, L.S.D., or hashish. Two drugs that are the focus of not only media attention but also law enforcement are Fentanyl and methamphetamine.
Fentanyl is a schedule II opiate that was responsible for 502 overdose deaths in Ohio in 2014. It has been described as 30-50 times more powerful than heroin and is often mixed with heroin for use. Under Ohio's law, the bulk amount of Fentanyl is 20 grams. Therefore, an individual who seeks or possesses an amount equal to bulk, i.e. 20 grams, but less than 5 times bulk, i.e. 100 grams could be charged with a felony of the third degree. This offense carries with it a presumption that the offender receive a prison sentence. Amounts of Fentanyl over 100 grams become a more serious offense with mandatory sentences and possible consecutive sentences for major dealers.
Methamphetamine deals are making a comeback in the Columbus, Ohio area. Gone are the days when "cookers" of "crystal meth" would pay individuals to purchase large amounts of Pseudoephedrine at the local pharmacy to use as ingredients for the home laboratory. Instead, methamphetamine is arriving on Columbus, Ohio streets from Mexico and is much purer and cheaper than heroin. In April of 2014, an individual was arrested in Columbus who possessed 9 kilograms or almost 20 pounds of high quality "meth" in a crystalline form which is referred to as "ice."
Suffice it to say, Ohio and Federal laws are harsh on individuals who possess and/or traffic in methamphetamine. Under Ohio law, methamphetamine is a schedule II stimulant whose bulk amount is 3 grams or more. Individuals who possess or deal with Amphetamines face harsh sentences even at low amounts. Therefore, if an individual possesses 5 times bulk or over 15 grams of Amphetamines, the sentence becomes mandatory and possibly lengthy if there are multiple offenses.
Federal sentencing under the United States Sentencing Guidelines are also severe for those dealing in methamphetamine. Under the Guidelines, an individual who possesses a mixture of this drug in an amount under 10 grams faces a possible prison sentence. If the amounts increase and/or if the purity of methamphetamine increases than so do the possible penalties.
Any person charged with aggravated possession or any drug offense involving Fentanyl or methamphetamine should immediately contact an experienced criminal lawyer. Law enforcement and the courts perceive these drugs to be heavily addictive and result in numerous overdose deaths. As such, the penalties, including prison, are severe and a lawyer must be called to make sure your rights are protected.
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