The federal government has been severely regulating the use of synthetic drugs. Recently, President Obama signed
into effect the Synthetic Drugs Abuse and Prevention Act. The act identifies 26 types of synthetic cannabinoids and cathinones as Schedule I controlled substances. Designation as a Schedule I controlled substance means that the substance cannot be used for medical purposes and that it also fails to meet accepted safety standards. As a result of the federal act, it isn’t uncommon for many individuals to question the legality of synthetic drugs in Arizona. Not knowing can lead to more Phoenix criminal defense cases concerning synthetic drugs.
Types of Synthetic Drugs
Chapter 34.1 of the Arizona penal code identifies three different types of controlled substances. These substances include:
- Imitation Prescription-Only Drugs
- Imitation Over-the-Counter Drugs
- Imitation Controlled Substances
Synthetic drugs are characterized as imitation controlled substances. A few examples of these substances include:
- K2, a form of cannabis
- “Bath Salts”
According to Arizona Revised Statutes 13-3453, it is unlawful for a person to “manufacture, distribute, or possess” imitation controlled substances. Violators of this statute are subject to a class six felony, which carries with it a presumptive sentence of one year, with a minimum of six months. If the circumstances are aggravated, then sentencing can be up to two years.
Arizona Revised Statutes 13-3456-57 identifies possession for the three different types of controlled substances. In terms of synthetic imitation drugs, Arizona law stipulates that it is unlawful to “possess” these types of drugs. To be in possession of a synthetic substance, a person needs to knowingly exercise dominion and control over the substance. Essentially, if you are aware that you have the synthetic substance on your person, then you are in possession of the synthetic substance.
Innocent Until Proven Guilty
If you are accused of being in possession of a synthetic drug in Arizona, then the prosecution must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you knowingly possessed the substance. While the prosecution must satisfy a hefty burden of proof, it is always helpful to have capable representation. To ensure that you are fairly represented during this difficult time, an attorney experienced in Phoenix criminal defense cases that focus on this issue is the best solution.
At Tyler Allen Law Firm, our attorneys specialize in providing clients with high-quality criminal defense. Our knowledge and experience will provide you with the representation that you need and deserve. Contact us today for a free consultation with an attorney.