Common Drug Offenses in Californi

Understanding Drug Crime Charges and Penalties in the State


Drug crimes are some of the most commonly charged offenses in California. Many drug crimes are charged as violations of California’s Health and Safety Code and can result in serious penalties.

Common drug offenses in California: 

  • Possession of drug paraphernalia
  • Drug possession
  • Drug possession for sale
  • Sale and transportation of a controlled substance
  • Drug manufacturing
  • Driving under the influence of a controlled substance

It is important to consult with an attorney immediately if you are charged with a drug offense. You could face a felony punishable by state imprisonment if convicted. Depending on the charges, you may be eligible for a diversion program.

Penalties for Drug Offenses

The penalties for drug crimes typically depend on the type of drug and the amount in possession. An amount that could be deemed possession with intent to sell will generally result in substantial jail time. Drug offenses are strictly prosecuted in California. 

Drug Treatment and Deterrence

Because of a high rate of recidivism, many courts have looked to address the underlying issues of addiction and drug dependence when handling non-violent drug offenders. One of the ways they are doing this is through 24/7 testing with the drug patch. 

The drug patch is non-invasive, worn continuously for up to 10 days. It tests for the drug parent and the drug metabolite, helping to ensure that any drug use is detected. The patch is tamper resistant and cannot be reapplied once removed. This form of testing holds offenders accountable, making it impossible to skip tests or dilute samples. 

The continuous testing can help courts, probation officers, and other supervising agencies feel confident that the offender is not using drugs during the monitoring period and may serve as a deterrent for future drug use.