What Exactly is Drug Paraphernalia?
Utah’s criminal code includes a crime for drug paraphernalia which is one of the most all inclusive criminal statutes on the book. It states as follows:
“It is unlawful for any person to use, or to possess with intent to use, drug paraphernalia to plant, propagate, cultivate, grow, harvest, manufacture, compound, convert, produce, process, prepare, test, analyze, pack, repack, store, contain, conceal, inject, ingest, inhale or otherwise introduce a controlled substance into the human body”
Clearly just about any activity with an item that could be considered drug paraphernalia is illegal. If the individual charged under the drug paraphernalia statute only possessed the item, or one of the other actions outlined above then they will be facing a class B misdemeanor. However, if the individual was delivering the drug paraphernalia or had the intent to deliver the paraphernalia then they will be facing a class A misdemeanor, this offense is analogous to a distribution charge but for paraphernalia instead of the actual controlled substance. Finally there is one circumstance where drug paraphernalia could be charged as a 3rd degree felony and that is if a person 18 or older delivers drug paraphernalia to a person under 18 years old.
The Charge Is Generally Attached to Drug Possession
Although drug paraphernalia has the possibility of being a very serious offense in most cases it is only included as a secondary offense that often gets dismissed as part of a plea deal. The majority of paraphernalia cases are also possession of marijuana cases because people obviously need the paraphernalia to ingest the controlled substance, and as part of the plea deal prosecutors will often dismiss the paraphernalia charge.
If you have been charged with drug paraphernalia on its own or as a part of a possession of marijuana case then you should call the lawyers at Criminal Defense Attorney Salt Lake City. Drug crimes are very serious offenses that carry special negative stigma from the public and as such it is very important that you do everything you can to protect yourself against a drug crime conviction. Call or email us today to get your questions answered and to find out how we can help you in your case.