Cocaine is a controlled substance prohibited at federal and state levels. The National Drug Intelligence Center categorizes it as one of the primary drug threats in Indiana.
The penalties are often severe in these cases and may include prison sentences and fines. It is important to understand the laws for drug possession in Indiana and know the potential penalties for a charge.
Classification for cocaine
The federal government has the Controlled Substances Act of 1973, which includes a series of five categories from schedule I to schedule IV for controlled substances. The government based each drug’s listing on how addictive consumption is, with a schedule I as the most and schedule IV as the least. Cocaine is a schedule II controlled substance, which means that it has a high potential for abuse and causes strong physical dependency.
Authority for charges
The federal government has supremacy over the state, and the CSA is a federal law. This means that if a conflict arises between federal or state law for a person’s sentence, the court upholds the federal government’s sentencing.
Penalties for possession
Charges for cocaine possession may be a misdemeanor or felony charge, depending on the quantity and intent involved. For possession of less than one gram, the sentence may be a misdemeanor with up to one year in jail and a $5,000 fine.
If a person has up to three grams, the penalties may include a felony charge of six months to two years in prison and up to a $10,000 fine. However, if possession is over three grams, the charges may increase to six years behind bars.
Intention to sell
If the police believe that the quantity is high enough that the defendant had the intention to sell, the penalties may be more severe. For example, with possession of between 500 to 4,999 grams, the sentence may include up to 40 years in prison and a $5 million fine.