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What Are the Illinois Penalties for Drug Paraphernalia Possession?

 Posted on July 27, 2020 in Drugs and Narcotics

IL defense lawyerAlthough recreational marijuana was legalized in Illinois this year, there are still many other drugs that are classified as illegal in the state. These include cocaine, LSD, heroin, Methamphetamines, and Ecstasy. In addition, owning or carrying certain drug paraphernalia can result in serious criminal charges. The consequences of a conviction can be severe, from fines to a lengthy prison sentence, not to mention a stain on your record. Many people may not know that simply having an item that is used to ingest or make a drug is a crime. If you or someone you know is facing any type of drug crime charge, it is essential to seek the legal guidance of an experienced criminal defense attorney.

What Is Paraphernalia?

In Illinois, the Drug Paraphernalia Control Act defines drug paraphernalia as any materials or equipment used in the illegal production, processing, packaging, storing, hiding, testing, or use of drugs. Materials that are used to manufacture Methamphetamine are also illegal, but they are covered under a separate statute.

The law specifically identifies certain items as drug paraphernalia including:

  • Bongs
  • Pipes
  • Carburetion tubes
  • Syringes
  • Spoons and vials
  • Items that cut or dilute marijuana or other drugs

It is important to note that the above list is not all-inclusive. Any other item that can be used for illegal purposes such as scales, plastic baggies, and similar items may be considered drug paraphernalia in the eyes of the law.

Punishments for Paraphernalia

Under Illinois law, the possession of drug paraphernalia is a Class A misdemeanor, with a fine of at least $750 and up to one year in jail if convicted. In certain situations, a defendant could face felony charges. However, a judge may sentence an offender to probation as opposed to jail, especially if this is his or her first offense.

The prosecution must prove that the defendant intended to use the paraphernalia for drugs, which can be difficult if the person was not in possession of any illicit substances at the time of the arrest. The case can become complicated because some types of paraphernalia may be used for marijuana and other drugs. The defense can argue that it is not illegal to use the paraphernalia for recreational marijuana, as long as the amount of marijuana is within the legal limits.

Contact a Cook County Criminal Defense Lawyer

Being in possession of certain drugs can be a criminal offense, but so can having drug paraphernalia on you. In some cases, it could lead to significant penalties. The accomplished Chicago drug crimes attorneys at Luisi Legal Group have more than 15 years of legal experience, so they understand how much a drug conviction can impact your personal and professional life. We will carefully review the circumstances of your case to make sure your rights are protected in court. To schedule your free consultation, call us today at 773-276-5541.



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