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What are the elements of drug cultivation charges?

Being in possession of an illegal drug or substance alone does not automatically mean that the accused will face other drug charges. However, if individuals in New York and elsewhere are found in possession of other items or equipment, then he or she could face additional allegations. Drug manufacturing and drug cultivation, for example, are considered serious charges and could carry harsh penalties. Thus, defendants should be aware of the elements necessary for prosecutors to obtain a conviction on these charges so that they can better defend against them.

So, what are the elements of drug cultivation offenses? In order for an alleged individual to be convicted of drug cultivation or drug manufacturing there has to be evidence that the accused intended to manufacture or cultivate the illicit drug. Typically, prosecutors need to prove that the defendant was in possession of the drug and had the intent to manufacture or cultivate the drug.

In order to prove this intent, evidence such as being in possession of equipment or items commonly used to manufacture or cultivate a drug could be enough. For example, being in possession of an ample amount of pseudoephedrine, along with other equipment, could be used as evidence of methamphetamine manufacturing. Additionally, being in possession of grow lamps and hydroponic equipment could be evidence of marijuana cultivation, which could be enough to issue an arrest warrant.

Those who are alleged to have produced drugs typically face felony charges. If convicted of such charges, an individual could face harsh penalties that include prison, fines, and damage to his or her reputation. Those accused of such a crime should understand what defense options are available to them. If evidence was not properly collected or a search warrant was not properly executed or obtained, a defendant could use that fact to suppress evidence that is to be used against them. Ultimately, this could help them reduce or dismiss some or all of the charges against them. By speaking with an experienced criminal defense attorney, accused individuals can discover is an issue pertinent to their case.

Source: FindLaw, “Drug Manufacturing and Cultivation,” accessed May 16, 2016

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