Getting Charged With Possession of Controlled Substances And What It Means For You


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Being in possession of controlled substances (the legal term for drugs) can land you in some very serious trouble indeed. Texas especially is known for having some of the harshest drug possession laws in the land. Under the Texas Controlled Substances Act, a conviction or an arrest for a possession of controlled substance can lead to criminal penalties. You could face fines, jail time, and even a criminal record.

Texas characterizes drug crimes into four penalty groups numbered one through four. Penalty Group 1 is the most illegal and dangerous drugs, with Penalty Group 4 encompassing less severe and serious drugs. Penalty Group 1 encompasses the most dangerous and heavily regulated drugs out there, including:

  • Cocaine
  • Methamphetamine
  • Heroin
  • LSD
  • Opioids (including painkillers like codeine, hydrocodone, and oxycodone)
  • Ketamine

If you or your loved one is caught with even less than one gram of these Penalty 1 substances, they can be sentenced to a fine of up to $10,000 and six months to two years in state jail. If you are caught with four to 200 grams, and even more, prison time can reach an all-time high of 99 years in prison, with a fine of up to $10,000.

Penalty Group 2 drugs are not as dangerous, but still highly addictive; these include ecstasy, amphetamines, PCP, and psychedelic mushrooms. Like Penalty 1 drugs, if you are caught with less than a gram in your possession, you can get six months to two years in state jail and a fine of up to $10,000. If you are caught with up to 400 grams, prison time balloons up to 99 years and a fine to exceed no more than $50,000.

Possession of Penalty Group 3 drugs, however, are only classified as a Class A misdemeanor. Usually they encompass drugs with a stimulant or depressant effect. These include Valium, benzodiazepines, anabolic steroids, and Methylphenidate, or Ritalin. If you have less than 28 grams in your possession, you can spend up to a year in county jail and must pay a fine of up to $4,000. Possession of over 400 grams carries a prison sentence of five to 99 years and a fine of up to $50,000.

Penalty Group 4, by contrast, encompasses drugs that are not dangerous in and of themselves but that have a great potential to be abused. These comprise of controlled prescription medications; many opioid derivatives covered in Penalty Group 1 are also included here. If you are caught with more than 400 grams of these substances, you will have to spend up to six months in jail to a life sentence.

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Possession, of course, doesn’t necessary mean usage. While most drugs may be highly addictive and dangerous in high dosages, addiction itself is affected by a variety of factors that have little to do with the drug itself. Drug users are among the most vulnerable populations, coming from marginalized populations or with histories of physical and sexual abuse. In most cases, drugs are used to chase the psychic pain away.

A word to the wise: While most states have decriminalized marijuana possession, Texas has not. You can still be hit with a criminal charge if you are caught with just a small amount of marijuana.

ASAP Bail Bonds firmly believes that no matter the nature of your charge, nobody deserves to the spend one minute more in jail than they absolutely have to. We handle all kinds of bail bonds, from cash bail bonds to surety bail bonds to federal bail bonds, so be sure to call us today. We can get you out of jail fast with our speedy bail bond services.

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