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What happens if you're caught using cocaine?

Every state has its own laws and penalties for drug offenses. As someone new to the state, it's a good idea to know all the pertinent laws and regulations of the area where you live. If you aren't familiar with Virginia's cocaine laws, this should help you understand them better.

You probably already know that cocaine is illegal across the country. It is a Schedule II drug, and being caught with it could lead to jail sentences and fines. Simple possession may lead to a fine of up to $2,500 and a jail sentence of up to a year. Keep in mind that possession is a significantly less serious crime than the sale of cocaine.

If you sell cocaine and are caught, you will face up to life in prison. The minimum penalty is normally 20 years in prison if you sell 5 kilograms or more of the drug.

The good news about Virginia is that it does offer alternatives to prison time for certain nonviolent offenders. For example, you may be able to seek drug addiction treatment through the courts instead of spending your time in prison following an arrest. The current drug treatment courts, which began in 1995, aim to reduce the recurrence of drug offenses and treat the issue at its source. On the whole, nonviolent offenders are placed on probation while they complete a drug treatment program.

It's possible to avoid jail time, even if you're convicted of possessing cocaine. With the right defense and assistance, you can seek out an alternative penalty for your actions.

Source: FindLaw, "Virginia Cocaine Laws," accessed May 02, 2018

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