Imitation Marijuana Possession
Many people assume that imitation or synthetic marijuana is harmless. Other names for imitation marijuana include K2, spice, synthetic cannabinoids, and fake weed. Imitation marijuana was initially developed by scientists to study the nervous system, but the impact on the body is not the same as marijuana. If you are investigated for or charged with imitation marijuana possession, you should consult an experienced Phoenix drug crime lawyer. James Novak is a skillful criminal defense attorney who previously worked as a prosecutor. He now brings his insights to bear on crafting a defense strategy for people accused of drug possession and other crimes.Imitation Marijuana Possession
"Marijuana" is defined as the seeds and resin of a genus cannabis plant, not including the sterilized seeds or stalks from a genus cannabis plant. Imitation marijuana is a chemically concocted substance or plant material that is believed to produce a high similar to that of marijuana when ingested or smoked. Arizona, like most states, prohibits the use, sale, manufacture, and distribution of imitation marijuana. This prohibition is because the drug often induces similar effects to poisoning and results in fatalities or emergency hospitalization. Imitation marijuana is often sold under other names and is sometimes labeled as incense.
If you consume imitation marijuana, you may experience hallucinations, rapid heart rate, confusion, agitation, and vomiting. Some synthetic marijuana is 85 times more potent than THC, and many people need to go to the hospital after consuming it. Sometimes imitation marijuana has been adulterated with other chemicals, such as rat poison. In Arizona, synthetic drug crimes are included in Chapter 34.1 of the penal code.
A.R.S. sections 13-3456, 13-1357, and 13-3458 prohibit the use of imitation drugs. Under A.R.S. section 13-3456, possession or possession with intent to use imitation controlled substances is illegal. It is not a defense to prosecution if you believed that the imitation marijuana was legitimate marijuana. If you violate the law and possess imitation controlled substances or possess them with the intent to use them, you can be charged with a class 2 misdemeanor. That means that you may face up to four months in jail, probation, substance abuse counseling and education and treatment, a maximum fine of $750, and other fees.
Under the law, a counterfeit preparation is one that has an appearance that imitates another preparation but is different. Under section 13-3453, imitation controlled substances are illegal. It is a class 6 felony to manufacture, distribute, or possess with intent to distribute imitation marijuana.Other Imitation Marijuana Crimes
Possession of imitation marijuana is less serious than selling it to a minor. It is a class 5 felony to sell imitation marijuana to a minor. Selling, making, or distributing imitation marijuana is more serious than simply possessing it, and it can result in class 6 felony charges.
Although imitation marijuana possession is the least serious kind of counterfeit drug crime, it is still taken seriously, and you should take the charges seriously. If you are convicted, you face the possibility of more serious penalties for a second, third, fourth, or subsequent conviction. It may be more difficult to reach a plea agreement for subsequent offenses if you are a repeat offender. You will have a criminal record for an imitation marijuana possession conviction, and that can make it difficult to get a job or secure housing or a loan.Consult an Experienced Phoenix Lawyer to Fight a Drug Charge
You might assume that it is not a big deal to smoke imitation marijuana. However, it is illegal to use, sell, make, or distribute imitation or synthetic marijuana. It is crucial that you talk to a criminal defense attorney about your situation. There may be strong defenses that can result in the charges being dismissed or your sentence being reduced. If you are charged with imitation marijuana possession in Arizona, call experienced criminal defense attorney and former prosecutor James E. Novak. Mr. Novak represents people accused of imitation drug crimes throughout the Phoenix region, including in Tempe, Mesa, Scottsdale, Chandler, Gilbert, and other areas of Maricopa County. Contact him at (480) 413-1499 or via our online form.