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What is the penalty for possession in Connecticut?

The state of Connecticut takes possession of illegal drugs very seriously. The potential punishments for possession depends upon the type of drugs, the amount uncovered and whether or not the accused person has had a prior drug conviction.

A first offense for possession of less than .5 ounces of marijuana is a $150 fine. Any subsequent offenses can result in a maximum fine of $500 and a 60-day suspension of the person's driver's license. Possession of less than 4 ounces could result in one year of prison for a first offense and up to five years for subsequent offenses. Being found in possession of at least 4 ounces of marijuana can result in a maximum prison sentence of five years and a $5,000 fine for a first offense and a maximum of 10 years in prison and a $10,000 fine for subsequent offenses.

Those who are found in possession of narcotics such as heroin or cocaine face a maximum prison sentence of up to seven years and $50,000 fine. A second offense could result in a 15-year prison sentence and a maximum $100,000 fine. Any subsequent offenses could result in a 25-year prison sentence with a maximum $250,000 fine. Possession of any other illegal drug could result in a one-year prison sentence for a first offense and up to five years in prison for subsequent offenses.

It is recommended that those who have been charged with possession in the state of Connecticut seek legal assistance. In some cases, an accused person may qualify for an alternative sentence that reduces the potential amount of time that the person may spend in prison. Otherwise, an attorney can potentially negotiate a sentence that does not involve a prison term.

Source: State of Connecticut General Assembly, "DRUG POSSESSION, SALE, AND PARAPHERNALIA PENALTIES", James Orlando, September 30, 2014

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