While any drug charge is a serious criminal matter, heroin charges are some of the most serious drug charges you can face in Maryland. Even small amounts of heroin in this state can lead to serious penalties, including time in prison. Anyone who is facing heroin charges should understand just how serious these charges are.
What are the penalties for possession of heroin?
The penalty for possessing heroin on a first offense is a misdemeanor charge that can lead to 4 years in prison if you are convicted. A fine of $25,000 is possible. A person who is convicted of bringing 4 grams into the state faces a felony charge that carries up to 25 years in prison plus a fine of up to $50,000. The possible penalties double on subsequent convictions for possession of heroin charges in Maryland.
What are the penalties for trafficking and selling heroin?
Selling and trafficking heroin are felony charges. At a minimum, a person faces 20 years in prison and a possible fine of $25,000. The fines and incarceration sentence increase with larger amounts of heroin. Selling heroin to minors or selling heroin near a school also carry harsher penalties. Subsequent convictions carry sentences that are double those of a first conviction for trafficking or selling heroin.
Considering the severity of the penalties associated with heroin convictions, you can see that a vicious defense is vital. Exploring the options that are available, which might include drug court in limited cases, might help you to decide how you are going to protect your rights.
Source: FindLaw, "Maryland Heroin Laws," accessed Oct. 08, 2015