A special law in New Jersey makes it a first degree crime to maintain a CDS production facility irrespective of the quantity of drugs involved. What this means is that if you are found guilty of maintaining or operating a property to manufacture drugs, you will have to serve as much as twenty (20) years in prison. Our defense team, including former Essex County Prosecutors, know how to dissect a case so that the best opportunity for a downgrade or dismissal is achieved. The following is some important information you should know regarding maintaining a CDS production facility under N.J.S. 2C:35-4. Contact our Newark Office anytime 24/7 at 973-710-1520 to speak to an experienced drug offense defense lawyer at our firm.
Drugs That Fall Within The Production Facility Law
The statute only applies to methamphetamine, lysergic acid diethylamide, phencyclidine, gamma hydroxybutyate, flunitrazepam, marijuana or other Schedule I or II controlled dangerous substances.
What Are The Elements That Prosecutor Must Establish To Prove This Offense?
To be convicted of maintaining a CDS production facility, the state must prove four (4) elements beyond reasonable doubt. The state must establish that: (1) a premises, place or facility was used to manufacture a substance; (2) the substance involved was one falling under N.J.S. 2C:35-4; (3) the defendant maintained or operated the premises; and (4) the defendant’s conduct was knowing.
How Is Maintaining or Operating Defined Under This Law?
Although the law creates the impression that an individual could only be convicted if the facility involved “real property” (i.e. real estate), this is not the case. Almost any location that is used for production qualifies under 2C:35-4 including a car, boat, trailer, mobile home, etc. If the defendant has any form of control over such a facility, they may be deemed an operator or maintainer. It should also be noted anyone who knowingly aids, promotes, finances, or otherwise participates in the maintenance or operation of the facility is exposed under this law.
How Much Jail Can You Receive If You Are Convicted?
For a first degree crime like this, an individual can be sentenced to a prison term ranging from ten (10) to twenty (20) years. There is also a mandatory minimum term of one-third or one-half of the sentence imposed that must be served before an individual is eligible for parole. This is what is referred to as a mandatory minimum and/or parole ineligibility period.
Is There Any Possibility For An Extended Prison Term To Be Imposed?
There is a mandatory extended term which must be imposed, on application of the prosecutors in Newark, if the defendant has a prior conviction for distribution of CDS.
Can I Be Fined If I Am Found Guilty Of Maintaining A CDS Production Facility?
The fine is enhanced beyond the standard penalty for a first degree crime. In this regard, the court may impose a maximum fine equal to the greater of seven hundred and fifty thousand dollars ($750,000) or five (5) times the street value of the drugs manufactured at the facility at any given time.
Maintaining A Drug Facility Defense Lawyer in Essex County NJ
If you or a loved one was arrested for operating, maintaining or financing a facility used to produce drugs, there are tremendous penalties that may be imposed in the event of conviction. The Judges at the Superior Court, Newark NJ, have almost no choice but to send you to jail for a significant period if you are found guilty. You definitely need knowledgeable counsel in order to avoid these ramifications. Call our Newark CDS Distribution Attorneys today for the assistance you deserve.