Increased Charges for Crystal Meth Conviction
Increased use of crystal meth resulted in the federal government passing the Methamphetamine Epidemic Act in 2005 as part of the government’s war on drugs. The primary objective of laying down this act was to put tight restrictions on the legal uses of crystal meth, as well as increasing the severity for its possession punishment laws. Due to the expanding epidemic of crystal methamphetamine use, states like Utah have followed suit, employing the strict consequences for crystal meth possession as the federal government.
Possession of methamphetamine can be sent to prison for not more than 5 years, pay a fine of up to $5,000, lose the right to possess and use firearms for life, suspension of driver’s license for 6 months, and seizure, forfeiture of the defendant’s property and money.
Intent to Distribute Crystal Meth
These larger amounts can be a red flag to the law enforcement and the courts as having an “intent to distribute” which can lead to very harsher penalties. In certain possession charges and in worse cases, manufacturing charges, can be brought against individuals that only possessed the over-the-counter drugs or chemicals used in the manufacturing of meth (otherwise known as precursor chemicals/ingredients, or meth paraphernalia). Among others, this consists of ephedrine, Methylamine, phenyl-2-propanone, hydriodic acid, and hydrogen gas.
Crystal Meth Defense
One good approach to defend against a possession of methamphetamine charge is to challenge the intention of the individual. From there the adequacy of the proof and/or the cop verification can also be brought into question, as well as the constitutionality of the stop, search, or investigation. A defense may even dispute the legitimacy of use, meaning whether it was appointed by a healthcare provider or not. The simple appearance of crystal meth in a house does not immediately relate that every single person in the house is subject to possession, as the court must validate a specific individual to have planned to possess the drugs. This basic element guards innocent spectators who could mindlessly be living with a meth user, or may have had the drug planted on them.