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Under Pennsylvania law, it is illegal to possess drug paraphernalia. Drug paraphernalia is broadly defined as “all equipment, products and materials of any kind” that are used or intended to be used for manufacturing, using or storing any controlled substance.
The reality is that the definition of all drug crimes in the Pennsylvania crimes code is absurdly long and confusing and can be construed to mean virtually anything connected to the possession or use of any controlled substance.
For example, among many other examples of paraphernalia, the governing statute precludes possession of “carburetion masks”, “air-driven pipes”, “chillums” and “chillers”. If you are confused, you are not alone; people who have been involved in criminal law their entire adult lives (like me) literally cannot tell you exactly what is “drug paraphernalia”.
Types Of Drug Crime Laws In PA
The reality is that the charge of possession of drug paraphernalia, probably more so than any other Pennsylvania crime, is one of common sense. Many household items and everyday utensils — such as a soda can, piece of aluminum foil, hollowed-out cigarette, ziploc baggy — can be considered drug paraphernalia.
The typical drug paraphernalia charges involve items such as bongs, baggies and pipes.
The bottom line is that if a person is caught with a device or item likely used to ingest or store a controlled substance, he or she is likely to be charged with possession of drug paraphernalia.
Being caught in possession of drug paraphernalia is a misdemeanor under Pennsylvania law. The penalties for this crime are imprisonment for up to one year in prison and a maximum fine of $2500.
Possession of drug paraphernalia in PA is an offense that must be taken seriously. Certainly no one want so to be saddled with a misdemeanor conviction that will stay on their criminal record for the rest of their lives.
If you are facing drug or drug paraphernalia charges you should call Attorney Erik Petersen for a free case review.
Under Pennsylvania law, people with no prior criminal record who are charged with minor (misdemeanor) drug charges may be eligible for Section 17 Probation. In Montgomery County, PA, Section 17 Probation gives people the opportunity to pay their debt to society (with non-jail sanctions such as paying fines, performing community service and being on probation) without having a permanent conviction on their criminal record.
Indeed, with Section 17 Probation, once a person has completed the sentence, the charges are legally dismissed and can then be expunged from their criminal record.
Being arrested for a drug crime in the Montgomery County, Pennsylvania area can result in severe, life-altering consequences if you are ultimately convicted. In this day and age, even a minor conviction can make it difficult — if not improssible — to obtain gainful employment or even volunteer for a local charity.
It is critically important to hire an experienced drug crime criminal defense lawyer to make sure that you get the best possible result that can hopefully be expunged from your record.
Let an experienced Abington, Pennsylvania Drug Crime Attorney fight for your rights. Call Norristown, Pennsylvania Drug Charge Lawyer Erik Petersen regarding your case.
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