Possession of marijuana for sale – lack of knowledge

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Possession of marijuana for sale – lack of knowledge

Possession of marijuana for sale is an automatic felony in California, where as a personal possession charge may be prosecuted as either a misdemeanor or a felony, depending on the circumstances. In order to avoid the severe penalties that may be imposed in connection with a “for sale” charge, it is critical that an individual accused of this offense contacts a California drug crime defense attorney who is well versed with the many defenses that are applicable to this crime.

Lack of knowledge is one of these defenses. When a person is charged with possessing marijuana for sale, the prosecutor must be able to prove that the individual had the intent to sell the drug and that he or she had knowledge of its presence and its illegal character. If these knowledge requirements are successfully rebutted, the jury is not permitted to return a guilty verdict. The bottom line is that possession implies knowledge – without it, a possession charge simply won’t hold up.

Lack of knowledge is challenged in two ways. The first way deals with a lack of knowledge about the presence of the marijuana. This type of defense will work best when, for example, an individual buys new property that has a significant number of marijuana plants growing on a remote piece of the land. If the plants were discovered by the police and the property owner was charged with possession for sale (incidentally, he or she would probably also be charged with cultivating marijuana under this scenario), he or she could claim that it was a previous owner who grew the plants and that he or she had no knowledge of their existence, as he or she never ventured out to that part of the land.

Similarly, a lack of knowledge defense is raised when an individual doesn’t know the illegal character of the marijuana drug. Looking to the same scenario, perhaps the new property owner does know that the plants exist, but doesn’t know that they are marijuana plants – he or she only knows that “plants” are growing on the property. Without knowing that the plants are illegal or that they have a narcotic character, he or she has not committed a crime. It should be noted that this type of “knowledge” defense will only apply to someone who has no recorded history of any drug activities and to someone who didn’t make any incriminating, contrary statements to the investigating officers.

A lack of knowledge defense, when applied to a possession of marijuana for sale case will typically work best when the accused didn’t have actual (or physical) possession of the drug but rather was charged with constructive or joint possession of the drug. Although circumstantial evidence (that is, evidence that isn’t directly observed but is inferred from events or circumstances that surround it) may be used to prove that the accused had knowledge about the marijuana, a good criminal defense lawyer will know the most effective ways to challenge that evidence so that the defense will stand.

The exceptional criminal attorneys at The Kavinoky Law Firm know the ways that a “lack of knowledge” defense will be best applied and further know how to successfully convey it to a judge and jury to favorably represent their clients. They specialize in California drug laws and have mastered this, as well as the many other defenses that apply to “possession of marijuana for sale” cases. With law offices throughout the state, including several in and around Los Angeles, they are available to provide their outstanding legal advice and services to anyone in need of a skilled California drug crime defense attorney. To learn more about the defenses that apply to a possession for sale charge or for questions about any other marijuana or drug related legal matter, contact the firm today for a free consultation.