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At O’Brien & Eggleston PLLC, our Albany criminal defense attorneys know there are multiple types of drug possession charges in New York. Each criminal offense and its penalties depend on the circumstances of the crime, including which illegal substance was involved and how much. Was it possession, or was selling or intent to sell drugs evident? Does the individual have any prior convictions, and if so, were any of them for felonies or violent felonies?

Since New York has decriminalized specific amounts of marijuana, first-time possession doesn’t carry much consequence, a citation and a $100 fine. However, possession of marijuana in a quantity over 28 grams can lead to either a misdemeanor or a felony charge.

Cocaine, on the other hand, carries a much stiffer penalty. Even if you are only found to have a minimal amount, penalties can be several months to 15 years in prison, and fines can be up to $500,000.

The quantity required to increase the charge from simple possession to possession with intent to distribute varies between the drugs found and their weight.

Here, our Albany drug crime defense lawyers list drug possession crimes and their penalties in New York.

Common Drug Possession Penalties in New York

Drug Possession Crimes in New York

To follow is a list of drug possession crimes in New York.

7th Degree:  Possessing a controlled substance.

Class A Misdemeanor

  • Up to 1 year in prison.
  • Up to $1,000.

5th degree (New York does not have a 6th-degree crime).

Class D Felony.

Possessing:

  • a controlled substance with intent to sell.
  • at least ½ oz preparations containing narcotics preparations.
  • at least 50 mg phencyclidine (PCP).
  • at least ¼ oz concentrated cannabis preparation.
  • at least 500 mg cocaine.
  • at least 1,000 mg ketamine.
  • ketamine with a prior conviction of ketamine possession.
  • at least 28 g of gamma-hydroxybutyric acid (GHB).

Penalties include:

  • 1 to 2.5 years in prison.
  • Alternate penalty of up to one year.
  • Up to $5,000.

4th Degree.

Class C Felony.

Possessing at least:

  • ⅛ oz preparations containing a narcotic drug.
  • ½ oz preparations containing methamphetamine or its precursors.
  • 2 oz preparations containing narcotics preparations.
  • 1 g stimulants.
  • 1 mg lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD).
  • 25 mg hallucinogen.
  • 1 g hallucinogenic substance.
  • 10 oz dangerous depressant.
  • 2 lbs of depressants.
  • 1 oz of concentrated cannabis preparation.
  • 250 mg PCP.
  • 360 mg methadone.
  • 50 mg PCP with intent to sell and a prior conviction of a drug offense.
  • 4,000 mg ketamine.
  • 200 g GHB.

Penalties include:

  • 1 to 5.5 years in prison.
  • Alternate penalty of up to one year.
  • Up to $15,000.

3rd Degree.

Class B Felony.

Possessing:

  • a narcotic with intent to sell.
  • a stimulant, hallucinogen, hallucinogenic substance, or LSD with intent to sell and a prior drug conviction.
  • at least 1 g stimulant with intent to sell.
  • at least 1 mg LSD with intent to sell.
  • at least 25 mg hallucinogen with intent to sell.
  • at least 1 g hallucinogenic substance with intent to sell.
  • at least ⅛ oz preparations containing methamphetamine or its precursors with intent to sell.
  • at least 5 g stimulants.
  • at least 5 mg LSD.
  • at least 125 mg hallucinogens.
  • at least 5 g hallucinogenic substance.
  • at least ½ oz preparations containing a narcotic drug.
  • at least 1,250 mg PCP.

Penalties include:

  • 1 to 9 years in prison.
  • Alternate penalty of up to one year.
  • Up to $30,000.

2nd Degree.

Class A-II Felony.

Possessing at least:

  • 4 oz preparations containing a narcotic drug.
  • 2 oz preparations containing methamphetamine or its precursors.
  • 10 g stimulants.
  • 25 mg LSD.
  • 625 mg of a hallucinogen.
  • 25 g hallucinogenic substance.
  • 2,880 mg methadone.

Penalties include:

  • 3 to 10 years in prison.
  • Up to $50,000.

1st Degree.

Class A-I felony.

Possessing at least:

  • 8 oz preparations containing a narcotic drug.
  • 5,760 oz of methadone.

Penalties include:

  • 8 to 20 years in prison.
  • Up to $100,000.

If you are facing drug charges in New York, contact our Albany criminal defense attorneys at O’Brien & Eggleston PLLC today by calling (518)-391-2369 or online to schedule your initial appointment. We have a strong track record of producing real results for our clients. See how we can pursue a positive outcome for your case. 

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