Accused Of Drug Crime
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What to Do If
You’ve Been Accused Of
A Drug Crime in NC

What is Considered a Drug Charge?

Drug crimes in North Carolina can include charges such as manufacturing or cultivation, possession with intent to distribute, distribution, possession, and more.

All of North Carolina’s drug crime laws are articulated in a state statute, the North Carolina Controlled Substances Act. It describes the definition and punishment for drug-related offenses.

Drug crime charges can be tough in North Carolina and punishments are clear and fact-specific.

First Time Drug Offenders and Repeat Offenders - What's the Difference?

  • Repeat offenders have no such options, and prior convictions or arrests can result in harsher penalties and mandatory minimum jail sentences.
  • Repeat offenders are those who’ve been convicted of drug-related crimes before in North Carolina.
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Drug Charge Penalties in North Carolina

CODIFIED LAW- Mandatory minimums are codified law (judge has no discretion for lenience or “throwing the book” at someone).

$200 - $200,000- For marijuana, NC drug law punishments range from $200 - $200,000 fines, and 1 day to 18 years of incarceration, depending on the circumstances.

How Can I Get My Drug Charges Dropped?

  • NC First Offender program:
    • Certain actions can lead to the dismissal of drug charges.
    • Designed for people who’ve made a simple mistake and did not act violently, etc.
  • If not guilty of a crime, discuss with your criminal defense lawyer other options to have charges dropped.
  • Options for dismissal include proof of entrapment (being planted with drugs), violations of search and seizure rights, lack of probable cause, and more.


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