Although the New Orleans City Council has given officers some leeway in handling possession of small amounts of marijuana, Louisiana has earned a reputation for enforcing harsh penalties for drug offenses. Even first-time offenders may face hefty fines or, depending on the nature of the offense, lengthy prison sentences. If you or a member of your family has been charged with a drug-related offense, it is imperative to seek legal counsel immediately. Mark A. Vicknair, Attorney at Law, is a well-practiced attorney in these matters and offers a free evaluation of your case.
The state of Louisiana recognizes several types of drug offenses that carry various penalties depending on the nature of the offense. For example, how many times the defendant has been arrested on similar charges, the age of the offender, and the location of the crime. A first-time offender charged with possession of a small amount of marijuana can face a penalty of up to 15 days in jail and a $300 fine. Possession of larger amounts can carry harsh, mandatory sentences that result in years of jail time. Possession of narcotics can lead to a minimum fine of $5000 and a minimum of four years in prison. Sentences vary greatly for possession, paraphernalia, distribution, and cultivation. Any drug charge is serious and carries severe consequences. With experience both in prosecution and defense, Mark A. Vicknair provides an invaluable assessment of your particular case and provides knowledgeable legal counsel to guide you throughout your case.
Special Penalties for Minors and Driving Under the Influence of Drugs
Louisiana also enforces a zero-tolerance policy for minors charged with driving while intoxicated/driving under the influence. Most commonly, these charges are associated with alcohol and a blood alcohol content of .02% will result in a DWI charge for a minor. Minors who purchase or are found possessing alcohol can face up to $100 in fines and up to six months in jail. It is important to note that in Louisiana, driving while intoxicated charges also apply to any person found driving under the influence of any drug, Schedule I-V, including legally prescribed drugs. Even if a person has a legal prescription, that person may still be arrested and charged with driving while intoxicated, which under Louisiana law carries fines and jail time as well as loss of driving privileges for up to a year for the first offense. Consulting with an attorney immediately is highly recommended when a person is arrested on any of these charges.
It can be a challenging time for any person if they have been arrested. When we face challenges such as these, an attorney who is adept at guiding his clients through the legal process is necessary. With over 20 years experience, Mark A. Vicknair offers seasoned counsel and legal defense. If you or a family member has been charged with an offense, contact Mark A. Vicknair today so he can start working for you.