August 29, 2018

Michigan Drug Crimes

Michigan Drug Crimes

Drug-Related Offenses

The Williams Law Firm has handled thousands of drug offense cases. We will defend you or your loved one’s criminal case aggressively. Regardless of what you or your loved one has been charged with, being investigated or accused of a federal, felony or misdemeanor drug offense/crime, you need representation immediately.

Drug offenses can range in severity from felony (cocaine) or misdemeanor possession to marijuana or cocaine use (93 days/one year respectfully) or less with special status being granted), to major felony crimes that can carry a life sentence. If you, or someone you know, has been arrested or are under investigation for any of the following drug offenses in Michigan, contact our office right away.

Visit the Criminal Process section for information on arrest and court procedure.

Drug Crimes Under Michigan Law

Cannabis (Marijuana or Marihuana) TraffickingCasual Delivery of Cannabis (Marijuana or Marihuana)
Delivery of Cannabis (Marijuana or Marihuana) on School Grounds
Delivery of a Controlled Substance
Delivery to person under 18; violation by person under 18
Delivery of Ecstasy
Delivery of Meth
Dealing Schedule I Controlled Substance
Dealing Schedule II Controlled Substance
Dealing Schedule III Controlled Substance
Drug Trafficking / Drug Trafficking Federal Drug Crimes
Illegal Possession of Hallucinogens (mushrooms, LSD, mescaline)
Illegal Possession of Stimulants (Methcathinone)
Illegal Possession of Depressants (GHB)
Manufacture, Delivery, or Possession with Intent to Deliver or Manufacture Prohibited
Manufacture or Delivery LSD Manufacture of Meth
Operation of a Meth Lab
Possession Prohibited
Possession of Cannabis (Marijuana or Marihuana)
Possession of Cocaine (Manufacture or Delivery)
Possession of Meth (Meth amphetamine – Crystal Meth)
Possession of a Controlled Substance
Possession of Drug Paraphernalia Possession of LSD (Lysergic Acid – Hallucinogens)
Possession of Morphine (Delivery or Sale)
Possession of Nitrous Oxide (Delivery or Sale)
Possession of Narcotic Drug
Possession of Anabolic Steroid (Delivery or Sale)
Possession of Peyote, Barbituric Acid, Amphetamine
Possession of Pseudoephedrine
Possession of PCP
Possession of Methaqualone, Pentazocine, Phencyclidine (PCP)
Possession of Ecstasy (Delivery or Sale)
Possession of Heroin (Delivery of Sale)
Possession of Crank (Delivery of Sale)
Possession of Ecstasy
Possession of Narcotics Analgesics (Delivery or Sale)
Possession of Opium (Delivery or Sale)
Possession of an Opiate (Delivery or Sale)
Possession of OxyContin (Delivery or Sale)
Possession of Illegal Stimulants (Powder cocaine)
Possession of Crack (Cocaine)

Note: Production of Cannabis Plants (Psychoactive Plants) Certain allergy and cold medicines have been determined by the American Medical Association and FDA to be unsafe for persons who are operating a motor vehicle. These drugs cannot be purchased in bulk. If an individual is caught with an abnormal amount of any of the following drugs, that particular individual can be subject to criminal drug charges. These drugs can include but are not limited to Benadryl, Allerdryl, Sudafed, Contact Severe Cold Formula, Vicks Nyquil, Trifed, Phenergan, Pseudo ephedrine, Ephedrine and Inhalants such as glues, aerosol products, which block the passage of oxygen to the individuals brain.

Note, too, that after the expiration date has expired of a pharmacutical medication previously and validly prescribed, that too can be determined to be in possession of a controlled substance although this has rarely come to pass.

Michigan Medical Marihuana (Marijuana) Act

What is the Michigan Medical Marihuana Act?

The Michigan Medical Marihuana Act (the “Act”) became Michigan law on December 4, 2008. The Act permits an individual with a qualifying debilitating medical condition to register as a medical marihuana patient with the Michigan Department of Community Health (MDCH) and avoid criminal penalties under state law for certain medical uses of marijuana. Information about the Act and the state registry program is available on the LARA website.

This law is constantly evolving perhaps to the point of one day becoming a regulated recreational drug such as alcohol sales and usage.

Why is marihuana spelled with an “h” in the Act?

The spelling of marijuana within the Act is consistent with the spelling of marihuana in the Michigan Public Health Code and cannot be challenged based on one spelling or the other.

Does the Act change University policy regarding drug use or possession on campus?

No, university policies have not changed for the most part. Students and employees may not use or possess marijuana on campus. This is true whether the marihuana is smoked or ingested through other means. It is unclear based on the different educational institutions as to what effect or defense a valid Medical Marijuana Card will have on such long-term policies. Michigan State University is subject to the Drug Free Workplace Act of 1988 and the Drug Free Schools and Communities Act Amendment of 1989. Consistent with those laws, the MSU Drug and Alcohol Policy prohibits the unlawful manufacture, distribution, dispensation, possession, or use of controlled substances, illicit drugs, and alcohol on any property governed by the Board of Trustees and at any site where work is performed by individuals on behalf of the University. The Alcohol and Controlled Substances Policy also applies to employees performing safety sensitive functions and whose position responsibilities require they obtain a commercial driver’s license.

Employees and students who violate University policy prohibiting the use or possession of illegal drugs on campus are subject to disciplinary action through the appropriate disciplinary process.

First Offense Fines & Penalties

Possession of Controlled Substance MCL 333.7403

If you are found in possession of:

  • Schedule I or II substances > 1,000 grams (felony) Between 450 – 1,000 grams (felony) Between 50 – 450 grams (felony) Between 25 – 50 grams (felony).
  • Ecstasy or meth amphetamines > Any amount
  • Marijuana > Any amount

Then you may face:

  • Life in prison and fines up to one million dollars.
  • Up to 30 years in prison and $500,000 in fines.
  • Up to 20 years in prison and $250,000 in fines.
  • Up to 4 years in prison and $25,000 in fines
  • Up to 10 years in prison and $15,000 in fines
  • Up to 1 year in prison and $2,000 in fines

Keep in mind that the above only refers to possession charges. Depending on the amount of controlled substance you have and your intentions, you can also be charged with delivering, or possession with intent to deliver.

If you are caught in a public park possessing any amount of any controlled substance, you can face up to two years in prison.

A note for first offenders: If you have never before been convicted of similar charges, a judge will likely suspend your sentence for a term of probation. However, if you violate the terms of probation, your sentence will be immediately activated.

Second Offense Fines & Penalties

Mandatory Life Sentence MCL 333.7413

A much debated drug law in Michigan is the mandatory life sentence for certain repeat offenders. This law is an example of the harsh drug laws in the state of Michigan.

If you are convicted for a second or subsequent offense of possessing or distributing a Schedule I or II drug where the amount is greater than 50 grams, you could be sentenced to life in prison.

This sentence is mandatory. If you are sentenced under this law, you will not be eligible for probation, parole, or any other sentence reduction or early release.

Section 7411 and Section 7410 under the MI Health Code

Section 7411 is frequently used to give a first time possessor or user of a controlled substance that qualifies under the accepted drug schedules under statute an opportunity, to have the guilty plea adjudicated without guilt. This means that within the discretion of the court, an individual’s guilty plea will not be entered but rather held in abeyance until such time as the defendant successfully completes the terms of their probation. This typically means a drug program, urine drops to assure compliance, periodic visits to the probation department, often PBT testing, possible community service, and curfew. If the probation under Section 7411 is violated and terminated, the conviction is entered, which will include a mandatory period of drivers license suspension with the first month or two as “hard time”, meaning no court restricted limited license for work or school. Lastly, under the “Drug Court” statute in Michigan, and if your court actually has a drug or sobriety court, and further only if the judge agrees, it is permissible that a ‘second’ Section 7411 type of treatment can be granted upon compliance with the terms of the Drug Court’s probation even though the alleged one-time opportunity to avail the use of Section 7411 had previously been used.

Section 7410 is a statute that we use only in special circumstances. It involves “distribution without remuneration” and means that the illegal substance was divided without compensation occurring after a purchase. Think of four friends in a college dorm: They pool their money, buy a pound of marijuana at a bulk rate, and later split it up among themselves. It does not carry the benefit of a differed sentence as does Section 7411, but it is a misdemeanor as opposed to a felony because of the quantity involved and the lack of trafficking. It has been applied under a La Fay Plea to cover growing marijuana plants (manufacturing) not for distribution involving profit or trafficking per se, but for two or more people growing it (manufacturing) in a reasonable amount for their own personal use.

Such misdemeanor may be removed by a vacating of plea (expungement) procedure after five years under certain conditions of PA 463.

One more thing worth mentioning: Other than drug convictions that are held under abeyance from HYTA or Section 7411, the Secretary of State suspends your drivers license for six months with no restricted license for the first thirty days. This is the only instance remaining where the non-Drug Court sentencing judge has the discretion of granting or not granting a restricted license to the individual. In all other cases, only the Secretary of State can grant such a license excepting one granted through a Sobriety Court’s equity powers. One or more prior drug convictions in seven years means your drivers license will be suspended for one year. No restricted license is allowed for the first 60 days.

Common Street Drugs and Their Street Names

  • Amphetamines and Depressants: Bennies, Crank, Crystal Meth, Footballs, Meth, Speed, Uppers, Barbiturates: Downers, Goof Balls, Nembutal, Phenobarbital, Reds, Red Devils, Seconal, Tuninal, Yellowjackets
  • Benzodiazepines: Rohypnol, Roofies, Flunitrazepam, Ruffies, Roches, R-2, Valium
  • Cocaine Coke, Snow, Blow, Nose Candy
  • LSD: Acid, Purple Haze, Microdots, Window Pane, Blotter
  • Marijuana (Marihuana): Hash Oil, Hash, Dope, Tea, Pot, Reefer, Weed, Grass, Mary Jane, Bud, Green, Smoke
  • Opiates: Codeine, China White, Darvon, Darvocet, Demerol, Dilaudid, Heroin, Methadone, Horse, Morphine, Percocet, Percodan, Talwin, Vicodin
  • PCP: Angel Dust
  • GHB: Date Rape Drug, Roofies
  • MDNA: Ecstasy
  • Peyote: Shrooms, Buttons
  • Psilocybin: Magic Mushrooms, Shrooms

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