Marijuana Trafficking in Pennsylvania


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With the passage of Pennsylvania’s 2016 Medical Marijuana Act, up to 150 authorized dispensaries will be permitted to distribute medical marijuana to patients who have obtained a doctor’s recommendation and an official identification card. However, since recreational marijuana remains one of the state’s most-used drugs, Pennsylvania courts will continue to treat illegal trafficking or sales as serious drug crimes. Pennsylvania also has mandatory minimum sentencing laws that you’ll need to contend with if you are charged with marijuana trafficking in Pennsylvania. This means that even if there are extenuating circumstances in your case, if you are convicted a judge will hand down at least the sentence stated in the law.

As an experienced Philadelphia criminal defense lawyer and member of the Medical Marijuana Committee of the Philadelphia Bar Association, Michael Fienman is at the forefront of cannabis law in Philadelphia and across Pennsylvania. If you have questions about medical marijuana, have been charged with a marijuana-related crime, or are interested in obtaining authorization as part of the cannabis industry, contact attorney Fienman at (215) 839-9529 or complete our online form.

What You Need To Know About Marijuana Trafficking in Pennsylvania

Trafficking two to 10 pounds of marijuana will draw one year in prison and a fine up to $5,000. With a prior conviction, it’s two years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

If the charge is for trafficking 10 to 50 pounds of marijuana, you face three years in prison and a fine up to $15,000. With a prior conviction, it’s four years in prison and a $30,000 fine.

For trafficking 50 or more pounds of marijuana, it’s five years in prison and a fine up to $50,000.

You can be charged with trafficking through cultivating marijuana and your sentence will be based on the weight of the plants in your crop.

  1. From 10 to 20 live plants, is one year in prison and a fine up to $5,000.

  2. From 21 to 50 plants, will draw three years in prison and a fine up to $15,000.

  3. More than 50 plants, and you are facing five years in prison and a $50,000 fine.

Fines can be increased to use up all the trafficking proceeds.

What To Do If You Have Been Charged

If you are caught with marijuana in your possession, it is important that you do not make any statements to the arresting officer about it.

As with most criminal charges, you should not talk to the police or prosecutors without your attorney by your side. What you say can be taken out of context and used against you. If the police question you, tell them you want a lawyer and politely refuse to answer their questions.

What A Lawyer Can Do

Your attorney will examine the alleged facts to first determine if there was probable cause to charge you lawfully.

  • If you were stopped in your car, your defense attorney will find out if there was probable cause to pull you over and to search you and the vehicle. Your lawyer will look for ways to have any evidence suppressed.
  • If the marijuana belonged to someone else, your attorney will try to find proof that it was not yours.

How the Right Philadelphia Criminal Defense Lawyer Will Help

When you are up against marijuana trafficking in Pennslyvania, you will be facing inflexible laws and a determined prosecutor. You will need a defense attorney with a strong understanding of drug laws who can help you achieve the best possible outcome for your situation.

Understanding Marijuana Laws in the Commonwealth of Pennslyvania

Marijuana trafficking charges are described and defined under The Pennsylvania Code under Title 35 Chapter 6. Read the code here.

Questions? Contact us today.

If at all possible, Fienman Defense will try to get the charges against you dismissed. And if your case goes to court, Fienman Defense will fight to win an acquittal.