New York Penal Code § 220.18: Criminal possession of a controlled substance in the second degree

You will have committed the crime of criminal possession of a controlled substance in the second degree under New York Penal Code § 220.18 if you knowingly and unlawfully possess drugs as follows:

  1. Narcotics weighing at least 4 ounces,
  2. Methamphetamine weighing at least 2 ounces,
  3. A stimulant weighing at least 10 grams,
  4. Lysergic acid diethylamide weighing at least twenty-five milligrams,
  5. A hallucinogen weighing at least 625 milligrams,
  6. A hallucinogenic weighing at least 25 grams, or
  7. Methadone weighing at least 2,880 milligrams

To face prosecution for this crime it is not necessary that the police find the drugs on your person. It would be enough that they find them in your car, your home or some other place that you controlled. However, it is necessary that you knew about the drugs.

Example

The police received tips from several people that a man had cocaine in his home. The police executed a search warrant and found cocaine in a shoebox in the basement of the man's home. The man denied that he knew that the cocaine was there. In prosecuting the man for criminal possession of a controlled substance, the prosecutor must show that the man had knowledge that the cocaine was in his home.

Related Offenses
  1. Criminal sale of a controlled substance in the second degree: New York Penal Law § 220.41
  2. Criminally possessing a hypodermic instrument: New York Penal Law § 220.45
Defenses

If you are arrested for criminal possession of a controlled substance in the second degree, you can challenge the charge based on the amount of drugs found as the statute has very specific requirements with respect of the amount of the each drug necessary to have committed the crime.

Another defense would attack the method the police used to find the drugs. In order to conduct a search the police must have probable cause. If the search was unlawful anything which the search produced, including drugs would be inadmissible in court and your case would likely be dismissed.

If the drugs were not found on your person, another possible defense would be that the drugs belonged to another person and that you were not aware of their existence.

Sentence

As a class A-II felony, criminal possession of a controlled substance in the second degree is one of the most serious crimes in the New York Penal Code. This means that if you are convicted you could receive a sentence of life in prison and a fine of up to $50,000. The minimum sentence would be 3-8 years in prison. Your actual sentence will depend upon a number of factors including your prior criminal history.

New York Penal Code § 220.18: Criminal possession of a controlled substance in the second degree

A person is guilty of criminal possession of a controlled substance in the second degree when he or she knowingly and unlawfully possesses:

  1. one or more preparations, compounds, mixtures or substances containing a narcotic drug and said preparations, compounds, mixtures or substances are of an aggregate weight of four ounces or more; or

  2. one or more preparations, compounds, mixtures or substances containing methamphetamine, its salts, isomers or salts of isomers and said preparations, compounds, mixtures or substances are of an aggregate weight of two ounces or more; or

  3. a stimulant and said stimulant weighs ten grams or more; or

  4. lysergic acid diethylamide and said lysergic acid diethylamide weighs twenty-five milligrams or more; or

  5. a hallucinogen and said hallucinogen weighs six hundred twenty-five milligrams or more; or

  6. a hallucinogenic substance and said hallucinogenic substance weighs twenty-five grams or more; or

  7. methadone and said methadone weighs two thousand eight hundred eighty milligrams or more.

Contact the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates

If you are arrested for drug possession you could face years and years in prison away from your friends and family. However, an experienced attorney will understand defenses available as well as alternative sentencing options. The staff at the Law Offices of Stephen Bilkis & Associates has years of experience successfully defending clients who have been accused of drug possession, crack possession, cocaine possession, marijuana possession, drug selling, and other drug crimes. Contact us at 1-800-NY-NY-LAW (1-800-696-9529) to schedule a free, no obligation consultation regarding your case. We serve those accused of drug crimes in the following locations: the Bronx, Brooklyn, Long Island, Manhattan, Nassau County, Queens, Staten Island, Suffolk County and Westchester County.

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