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Federal Marijuana Sentencing

Federal Marijuana Sentencing Guidelines Simplified By The Legal Research Team At NLPA

Marijuana is one of the most widely used illegal substances in the country. Many states have passed laws enabling the use of marijuana for medical purposes. However, as mild a drug as it is, make no mistake, the punishment for federal crimes involving marijuana can carry steep sentences for those convicted.

The U.S. Sentencing Guidelines carry various base offense levels for marijuana crimes depending upon the charges involved. For example, a defendant can be charged in a federal indictment for one or any of the following violations involving marijuana:

  • Unlawful possession or manufacturing;
  • Importing; marijuana
  • Exporting;
  • Trafficking;
  • Possession;
  • Continuing Criminal Enterprise (CCE);
  • Distribution;
  • Possession with Intent to any of the above

Federal marijuana charges can be also enhanced based on the other factors involved (ie, attempt or conspiracy, near a school or protected location, involving underage or pregnant individuals, with use of a weapon, with use of a communication facility, paraphernalia and/or other drugs involved, etc). And this is all to determine a defendant’s guideline level for the instant case – let alone other enhancements the government may throw in during their Pre-sentence Investigation that include things such as prior criminal history.

Federal Marijuana charges can include any of the Schedule I Marijuana drugs and the various forms can be equal to more than their actual weight in marijuana for purposes of determining the sentence to impose. For example, while 1 gram of marijuana equals 1 gram of marijuana on the guidelines, 1 gram of Hashish oil is equivalent to 50 grams of Marijuana; 1 gram of Cannabis resin or Hashish is equivalent to 5 grams fo Marijuana; 1 gram of Tetrahydrocannabinol (Organic or Synthetic) is equivalent to 167 grams of Marijuana.

If you have a federal marijuana case and are not sure of the defenses that can be raised, NLPA is here to help. NLPA has been fighting federal marijuana convictions since its founding in 1986. We have what we believe to be one of the best track records in the country in defending cases such as this.

NLPA can assist at virtually any stage of your federal marijuana case including pretrial, plea negotiations, sentencing, appeal, post conviction and we also offer detailed case analysis services to determine what options and issues may be available at this point in the case.

NLPA provides services through a variety of payment and financing options. After all – the ability to have a strong defense team should not be a privilege for just the wealthy. If you are interested in learning how NLPA can assist with your case, contact us today!

The United States Sentencing Guidelines are released each year on November 1st.

View the latest Guideline Manual


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