Penalties for possession and sales of controlled substances in Minnesota are broken down into five degrees. Fifth degree violations are the least severe, while first degree violations carry the heaviest sanctions.
All five degrees of controlled substance violations bring serious fines and prison time. If you are charged with any of these drug violations, it is imperative that you consult with a skilled Minnesota drug defense lawyer who can navigate the legal system and make sure that you have the best possible defense.
Penalties for a First Degree Drug Violation
In Minnesota, a person convicted of a first degree controlled substance violation may be sentenced to imprisonment for up to 30 years or to payment of a fine of not more than $1,000,000, or both.
If the conviction is a subsequent controlled substance conviction, the person shall be committed to the commissioner of corrections for a minimum of four years and a maximum of 40 years. Additionally, they may be sentenced to payment of a fine of up to $1,000,000.
If the drug violation occurred while an individual was using a motor vehicle, his or her driver’s license will be revoked for a period of 30 days.
Penalties for a Second Degree Drug Violation
A second degree controlled substance violation is punishable by up to 25 years imprisonment and/or to payment of a fine of not more than $500,000.
If the guilty party has had a prior controlled substance conviction they will be committed to the commissioner of corrections for three to 40 years. They may also be required to pay a fine of up to $500,000.
Penalties for a Third Degree Drug Violation
Third degree controlled substance violations carry long prison sentences and hefty fines. A person convicted of such a crime may be sentenced to up to 20 years in prison or to payment of a fine of not more than $250,000, or both.
If it is a subsequent drug conviction, the offender will be committed to the commissioner of corrections for two to 30 years. In addition, they may be required to pay a fine of not more than $250,000.
Penalties for a Fourth Degree Drug Violation
A person convicted of a fourth degree controlled substance violation may be sentenced to imprisonment of up to 15 years and/or to payment of a fine of not more than $100,000.
If the offender has a prior drug conviction, the convicted person will be committed to the commissioner of corrections or to a local correctional authority for one to 30 years. They may also be required to pay a $100,000 fine.
Penalties for a Fifth Degree Drug Violation
Penalties for a person found guilty of a fifth degree controlled substance violaton include imprisonment for not more than five years, and/or $10,000 in fines.
If a person is guilty of a controlled substance crime in the fifth degree and it is a subsequent controlled substance conviction, the offender will be committed to the commissioner of corrections or to a local correctional authority for six months to 10 years and may be sentenced to payment of a fine of up to $20,000.
Minnesota Drug Vehicle Forfeiture
Under Minnesota drug Law, police may seize (keep or sell) any vehicle they believe was used in an illegal controlled substance violation. This can happen before any conviction. If law enforcement does decide to seize your vehicle, they must provide you notice of their intent to forfeit your vehicle.
You can prevent the forfeiture of your vehicle as a result of its use in connection with a drug crime. To do so, you must file a petition for judicial review within 60 days of receiving notice of the state’s intent to forfeit the vehicle. If you fail to file such a petition, you will never get your vehicle back from the state.
Edina Drug Attorney
This law is not dependent on vehicle ownership. If your vehicle was stolen and used in a drug crime, it can legally be seized. As a consequence, many innocent vehicle owners have their cars forfeited without ever committing a crime. In these cases, the innocent owner must file a petition for judicial review in order to get their vehicle back. Obviously, having your car taken away is a huge problem.
Many people rely on their vehicles to get to work, or to bring their children to school or daycare. To retain your car, you must take advantage of all possible resources. Our Edina drug defense lawyers are practiced at the art of preventing vehicle forfeiture. If police plan to seize your car, it is important that you contact a Minnesota drug defense attorney who can help you hold on to your vehicle.