Drug Charges

Drug Possession & Manufacturing With the Intent To Distribute: What You Need to Know

Possessing and manufacturing a controlled dangerous substance (controlled substances) in the state of Utah can have serious repercussions if you are not aware of the laws pertaining to controlled substances. As a common, yet potentially severe Utah charge, possessing or manufacturing an illegal drug could change your life drastically with just one mistake. In this article, you will find essential information regarding possession of controlled substances and the possible consequences.


What are the Controlled Substances in Utah?

The state of Utah has classified drugs into categories called Schedules. The severity of schedules varies with the lower schedule numbers containing more dangerous drugs. We layout each schedule and what drugs they may contain below.


Schedule I: This drug list has the most dangerous substances or substances most likely to be abused. A few of the drugs on this list are Ecstacy (MDMA), heroin, and marijuana.


Schedule II: Drugs on this schedule are less abused; however, they still contain a high degree of danger. For example, you will find codeine, oxycodone, hydrocodone, morphine, and various opium compounds on this list.


Schedule III: Schedule III drugs are less abused than those on I or II, but are more commonly used for medical purposes. Testosterone and anabolic steroids are examples of drugs on this list.


Schedule IV: This list focuses on chemical and compound ingestion, such as Ambien and Xanax.


Schedule V: The last schedule containing the least dangerous substances, mostly includes medically used drugs. For example, medicines with small amounts of codeine or opium are specified here.


For more information on Utah’s scheduled classification of drugs and controlled substances, visit Utah’s Code.


These schedules help specify how likely a drug is to be abused, but the amount of a substance found may alter a drug-related charge's details. Marijuana, for example, is classified as a Schedule I drug in Utah, but the amount in possession and times the offense is repeated can vary the punishment.


Consequences For Drug Possession Or Manufacturing With Intent To Distribute

The penalties described below can provide context for some cases of controlled substance charges in Utah. Still, the exact punishment can ultimately vary based on the amount of a substance found, type of substance found, what degree of a felony has been committed, and more.


The exact language from the Utah Code can be found here. The Utah Code says that any violation of Chapter 37 where someone is involved in the manufacturing or distribution of drugs is typically a felony. Regarding the specific penalties for the act or intent to distribute or manufacture drugs of the various schedules, the Utah Code states:


“A substance or a counterfeit of a substance classified in Schedule I or II, a controlled substance analog, or gamma-hydroxybutyric acid as listed in Schedule III is guilty of a second-degree felony, punishable by imprisonment for not more than 15 years, and upon a second or subsequent conviction is guilty of a first-degree felony.


A substance or a counterfeit of a substance classified in Schedule III or IV, or marijuana ... is guilty of a third-degree felony, and upon a second or subsequent conviction is guilty of a second-degree felony.


A substance or a counterfeit of a substance classified in Schedule V is guilty of a class A misdemeanor and upon a second or subsequent conviction is guilty of a third-degree felony.”


There are other caveats to these potential punishments in Utah’s code as well, so it is best to discuss your exact charges with a lawyer. The laws regarding controlled substances and drug possession with intent to distribute or manufacture are frequently changing in some states. In specific legal cases, you may be able to reduce jail time using supervised probation and other tactics.


What Can You Do About An Illegal drug charge?

We understand being charged with drug-related crimes can be intense and confusing. If you face a charge regarding illegal drug possession, you will need an attorney who has experience with a variety of cases. Lokken & Putnam has attorneys with skills in many different fields. We may be able to help with your situation. Please contact us about representing you in your drug-related legal case.