New York Drug Crime Laws

New York Drug Crime Laws

Being charged with a drug crime in the state of New York can lead to hefty penalties. Drug crimes are categorized in three ways, including violations, misdemeanors, and felonies. Most people will never be charged with the minor crime of a violation unless they are a minor. Felonies are the most serious charges and can result in jail time. Learning about New York drug crime laws is essential for those who have been charged.

Felony Charges for Serious Drug Crimes

New York has been historically known as one of the toughest states for drug charge penalties. Felonies carry major penalties that can be difficult for defendants to handle. The following are some of the criminal drug cases resulting in felony charges in New York.

  • Sales of controlled substances resulting in felonies can lead to prison time.
  • Drug possession of more than 500 milligrams is a Class D felony that can result in one to two and a half years in prison.
  • Drug trafficking brings strict penalties to those convicted.
  • Marijuana charges can vary significantly in New York. Charges can range from a minor misdemeanor to a felony, depending on the amount and intent.
  • Narcotic charges can also pose hefty penalties. Even small amounts of narcotics can result in felony charges.

What Impacts the Severity of Drug Charges?

There are variables that can affect the charges for drug offenses. Understanding these variables is essential for helping those convicted of crimes know what they face. Consider the following.

  • The type of drug involved in the crime
  • How much of the substance was involved
  • If there was a selling intent
  • If firearms were involved
  • If there are prior convictions
  • If the defendant is receiving drug treatment

Penalties of Drug Charges in New York

The penalties for drug charges in the state of New York can vary greatly. Some drug charges involve mandatory state prison sentences. The following are some of the possible penalties.


A first possession may not carry much of a penalty and usually only results in a $100 fine. This is a non-criminal offense in the state of New York. When found with more than 28 grams, the charges can result in a misdemeanor or felony.


Cocaine carries a much heftier penalty. Even small amounts in possession can result in prison sentences from a few months to 15 years.

Possession With Intent to Sell

This charge is based on the amount of drugs found on the person. This charge ranges from a misdemeanor to a Class A felony.

Hire an Attorney Experienced in New York Drug Crime Laws

Those who have been charged with a drug crime in New York need to learn about their rights and pursue a strong legal defense. Getting help from a lawyer is essential, especially with serious drug charges.

Drug charges can place a person in prison for a long time with certain controlled substances. For first offenses, a lawyer can help their client get an adjournment and contemplation of dismissal (ACD). An ACD means the charges will be dismissed if the individual stays out of trouble for at least six months and complies with all court orders.

Need Legal Help?

Select your legal issue below to connect with a lawyer