Sec. 11378 of the California Penal Code defines the crime of drug possession for sale as:
Except as otherwise provided in Article 7 (commencing with Section 4211) of Chapter 9 of Division 2 of the Business and Professions Code, every person who possesses for sale any controlled substance which is (1) classified in Schedule II, IV, or V and which is not a narcotic drug, except subdivision (g) of Section 11056, (2) specified in subdivision (d) of Section 11054, except paragraphs (13), (14), (15), (20), (21), (22), and (23) of subdivision (d), (3) specified in paragraph (11) of subdivision (c) of Section 11056, (4) specified in paragraph (2) or (3) of subdivision (f) of Section 11054, or (5) specified in subdivision (d), (e), or (f), except paragraph (3) of subdivision (e) and subparagraphs (A) and (B) of paragraph (2) of subdivision (f), of Section 11055, shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison.
In simple language, possession for sale is the criminal offense committed by a person who has one or more drugs, illegal narcotics, in their possession and from such possession, there is intent to sell the said illegal narcotics to a third party or parties.
Central to the commission of the crime is the proof or evidence presented that there was an actual intent to sell the drugs at the time of the arrest. One of the common ways this is proven or evidenced is by the possession of large amounts of cash. When cash or a weapon is found, there is a presumption that the possessor of the drugs has the intent to “deal” the said narcotics to a third party.
The physical quantity of the drug and their packaging is also a factor to divine intent to “deal” the drugs. If the said drugs were placed in small quantities in packets, then the presumption applies. Where the arrest was made also comes into play, because if the arrest was done in a known drug drop off point, then police authorities can include the intent to sell as part of the possession.
The severity of the charges be it classified as a misdemeanor or a felony drug offense, is dependent on several factors. These include the type of drug, the amount or volume of the drugs, if the drugs were offered or sold to minors, the accused’s criminal record and previous drug convictions.
There are defenses available to those accused of misdemeanor or felony drug possession with intent to sell charges. Engaging the services of a lawyer can provide you with the assistance you would need to protect your rights and advocate your rights in court.
The commission of the crime of drug possession for sale is a serious matter in California. Should you be or know anyone facing any of these charges, do reach out to the lawyers at the Law Offices of Ramiro J. Lluis for a free consultation today.