Under federal drug laws, you can be charged if you played a part in the manufacture of illegal controlled substances. This includes using a chemical process or working in a lab to create the drugs. The drugs most often manufactured include methamphetamines and LSD.

It is also a federal violation to grow or cultivate illegal controlled substances such as marijuana.

Federal law prohibits you from owning, renting, using or maintaining a place where controlled substances are illegally manufactured, distributed, used or stored.

Delivery Or Possession With Intent To Deliver

Federal drug laws also prohibit drug delivery or drug possession with intent to distribute.

Delivery is broadly defined to include any kind of transfer, including sales. However you do not actually have to exchange money to be charged with delivery – you can also be the person who arranged the transaction.

A charge for possession with intent to deliver is often used by federal prosecutors when someone is arrested with a large quantity of illegal drugs in their possession and/or a large amount of drug paraphernalia. The prosecutors don’t have to prove that you actually delivered or sold the controlled substances, just that you intended to.


Your penalties for a federal drug delivery conviction will depend on factors that include the kind of drugs involved and their amount. Prior convictions are also factored in, as well as your location when you were arrested (for example, if you were at a school your penalty will be harsher).

If you are convicted for a drug crime, it can result in forfeiture of your property. Property that was derived from the proceeds of a drug crime or that was used to commit or facilitate the crime can be forfeited. This can include belongings such as cars, land and money.

What To Do If You Have Been Charged

If you are charged with having drugs in your possession:

  • Do not make any statements to the arresting officer.
  • Do not talk to law enforcement or federal prosecutors without your attorney. What you say can be taken out of context and used against you.
  • If a law enforcement officer questions you, tell them you want a lawyer and politely refuse to answer their questions.

What Your Lawyer Can Do 

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

  • For example if you were stopped in your car, your defense attorney is going to see if there was probable cause to pull you over and to search you and the vehicle.
  • They will probe further to find out exactly where the drugs were found – and what impact that might have on your case. For example, if the drugs were found in your car but there were three other people riding with you – the drugs might not have been yours.

Your attorney will make sure that all federal laws were followed when law enforcement seized the drugs or searched your home. If the correct procedures were not adhered to, your lawyer may be able to file a motion to suppress the evidence. Your lawyer will make certain that your Fourth Amendment rights were not violated.

How A Lawyer Will Help

When you are up against a federal drug charge, you will be facing inflexible laws and a determined US prosecutor. You will need an attorney who can help you determine all of your options and achieve the best outcome for your circumstances.

United States Code

Read more about federal criminal offenses in the United States Code.

Questions? Contact us today.

If you are charged with a federal crime, the consequences can be devastating. Fienman Defense will fight tenaciously to protect your constitutional rights. We will guide you through a court system that can be complex and intimidating, and provide you with the strongest possible defense.