Virginia has very harsh laws with regard to the purchase, use and possession of drugs. The controlled substances are regulated by the Virginia drug control act and also under Federal law. Virginia law dictates that “it is unlawful for any person knowingly or intentionally to possess a controlled substance unless the substance was obtained directly from, or pursuant to, a valid prescription.” The law is also strict about manufacturing, distributing, selling or possessing any controlled substances.
What is the classification of drugs and what penalties do they attract?
Getting caught with controlled substances in Virginia can have far reaching consequences for a student. The controlled substances are classified into 6 schedules as per law, according to the usage and strength of the drug. Knowing the classification is very important as the charges and penalties are commiserating with the type of drug you are found with. Schedule 1 and 2 drugs are the most heavily punishable classifications. The crime may be classified as a felony or misdemeanour depending on the type of drugs the offender is found with. Being found in possession of these drugs may lead to 1-10 years in jail and a whopping fine of $2500. If the seizure is with intent to distribute or sell the drug the punishment may be up to 40 years in Jail. If you are caught more than once, life sentence and $500000 as fine are the likely punishment.
If you are caught driving while under the influence of a controlled substance may be charged with misdemeanour for a first offence but scales up to felony if repeated offences occur. If interstate dealings are unearthed the Virginia State laws may be superseded by federal laws which carry a heavier penalty of one year to life imprisonment and a fine of $1000 to $4 million.
Your student loan may be rejected on basis of substance abuse charges
Your chances of admission to a college may also be hampered if you have been charged with possession or use of drugs at a juvenile level. The school or college is bound by law to inform the authorities when a offence occurs which may lead to criminal prosecution above the normal disciplinary action taken by the school itself.
Federal student loans may be denied or revoked if you have been found guilty of possession and distribution. These unfortunate students may find themselves out of means to pay tuition fees.
It is of utmost importance to choose a competent VA student drug lawyer to represent you. The lawyer will move to protect your long term interests. He may move to get your case dismissed if the charges are not proven by the defense attorney or fight for a lesser charge. It may be your only chance to avoid a life long criminal record and salvage your educational aspirations and career prospects.