It’s illegal in California to use or sell synthetic drugs. This includes synthetic cannabis marketed under names like “Spice” or “K2,” as well as synthetic stimulants like “bath salts.”
Using or selling synthetic drugs in California is a misdemeanor. Depending on the circumstances of the case and the defendant’s criminal history, it is typically punished with misdemeanor “summary” probation or up to six months in county jail.
If you or someone you know has been accused of using or selling synthetic drugs, a skilled Los Angeles drug crimes attorney can help you fight the charges against you.
How does California prosecute using or selling synthetic drugs?
Under California Health and Safety Code 11375.5 HS (for stimulants) and 11357.5 HS (for cannabis), it is illegal to:
- Sell, dispense, distribute, administer, furnish, give or offer to sell/give a person synthetic stimulants or cannabis.
- Use synthetic stimulants or cannabis yourself.
Synthetic cannabis, also known as Spice, K2, and fake weed, is a type of synthetic drug that mimics the effects of marijuana. It is made of plant material that has been sprayed with chemicals that produce mind-altering effects.
Synthetic stimulants are a type of drug that mimics the effects of cocaine, methamphetamine, and other illegal stimulants.
Punishment for using or selling synthetic drugs in California
Using or selling synthetic drugs is a misdemeanor under both HS 11375.5 and 11357.5. The maximum punishment is six months in county jail and/or a $1,000 fine.
It’s also possible to receive misdemeanor “summary” probation for using or selling synthetic drugs. This means that the defendant will not be sent to jail, but will be placed on probation for a period of time. While on probation, they will be required to comply with certain conditions, such as attending drug counseling and submitting to periodic drug tests.
If they violate the terms of their probation, the defendant can be sent to county jail.
Defenses to accusations of using or selling synthetic drugs
There are a number of defenses that can be raised against accusations of using or selling synthetic drugs. These include:
- The defendant didn’t know the substance was a synthetic drug.
- The defendant didn’t intend to sell the substance.
- The police conducted an illegal search and seizure.
If you’ve been accused of using or selling synthetic drugs, an experienced Los Angeles criminal defense attorney can help you build a strong defense and fight for the best possible outcome in your case.
Los Angeles criminal defense attorney Robert M. Helfend is a skilled criminal defense lawyer who has been representing clients in California drug crime cases for more than 30 years. He has a proven track record of success in getting charges reduced or dismissed, and he is dedicated to providing each of his clients with the personal attention they deserve.
If you or someone you know has been accused of using or selling synthetic drugs, contact us today for a free consultation – 800-834-6434.