If you are manufacturing illegal drugs in Ohio, you may be facing serious consequences under the law. Manufacturing drugs charges typically refer to the manufacture or cultivation of any controlled substance with the exception of marijuana or methamphetamine, which are governed by their own laws.
Serious felony charges are often prosecuted to the fullest extent. Therefore, you should take manufacturing drug accusations seriously and make sure to consult a Columbus drug manufacturing attorney right away. Our attorneys have years of experience dealing with these cases and can help you receive justice.
If you are facing a charge for the illegal manufacture of drugs, you should reach out to Luftman, Heck & Associates by calling (614) 500-3836 as soon as possible.
What Is Considered Manufacturing Drugs Under Ohio Law
Under Ohio Revised Code § 2925.04, you can be arrested for the illegal manufacture of drugs if you are knowingly involved with the manufacture or production of a controlled substance in some way. Whether you are simply holding onto unprocessed drugs, buying ingredients, or actually involved in the chemical process of creating a controlled substance, you can face charges related to manufacturing drugs. This is true whether you are making the drugs in a personal home or an unlicensed lab in addition to whether or not you were participating in the manufacture on the premises where the final product was created.
Typically, manufacturing drugs charges relate to the creation of illegal drugs, such as heroin, cocaine, and ecstasy. They can also include the cultivation of illegal substances like psychedelic mushrooms. Unless you are a physician, pharmacist, or related licensed medical professional authorized to manufacture, prescribe, or sell medications and prescriptions, you can even face manufacturing charges if you are making drugs that would otherwise be legal with a proper prescription.
It’s important to note that the illegal assembly of drugs is just as serious as the illegal manufacturing of them. If you knowingly gather one or more chemicals necessary to create a Schedule I or Schedule II controlled substance, you may be arrested with the illegal assembly of drugs. If convicted, you may be left with a lengthy prison sentence and hefty fines, making it crucial for you to seek legal representation from a Columbus drug manufacturing attorney if you are facing this charge.
Consequences of a Manufacturing Drugs Charge
The consequences for a conviction for manufacturing drugs can be severe. If convicted, you can expect a driver’s license suspension for up to five years, huge fines, and even years of incarceration. While manufacturing any type of drug is a felony, the seriousness of the sentence you face will depend on the type of drug manufactured. The following are the Ohio drug schedules and the sentencing guidelines for different drugs:
- Schedule I and II drugs, such as ecstasy, peyote, morphine, heroin, cocaine, and amphetamines are charged as second-degree felonies, which carry a sentence of two to eight years in prison and a fine of up to $15,000.
- Schedule III, IV, and V drugs, such as Vicodin, Valium, and codeine are charged as third-degree felonies, which carry a sentence of nine months to five years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
In addition to these sentences, you face serious additional collateral consequences. If you are convicted of a felony drug charge, you will have a permanent criminal record which can make finding a job or housing difficult for the rest of your life.
In addition, you can even lose federal benefits and student financial aid. Fortunately, a drug manufacturing attorney may be able to help you reduce or dismiss your charges and could save your future.
Defending Against Manufacturing Drugs Charges
With the help of an experienced Columbus drug manufacturing attorney, you can build a defense to successfully fight these charges and keep your record clean. If you hire a drug manufacturing charge attorney at Luftman, Heck, & Associates to represent you, you can count on us to do everything possible to defend you. Some common defenses a drug manufacturing attorney may use to improve your situation include the following:
- The controlled substances involved were manufactured by a licensed medical professional or other individual authorized to manufacture drugs such as a pharmacist, pharmacy owner, or medical researcher.
- The substance in question was not a controlled substance.
- The evidence against you was collected during an illegal search or seizure.
- Your Fourth Amendment rights were violated.
- You were not read your Miranda Rights.
- The lab results and analysis of the substance were not done correctly.
Depending on the circumstances of your individual cases, a drug manufacturing attorney will use some of these tactics or others entirely to create the best possible defense for your case.
Illegal Assembly of Drugs
Under Ohio Rev. Code 2925.041, if you knowingly gather one or more of the chemicals needed to create a Schedule I or Schedule II controlled substance, you may be charged with the illegal assembly of drugs. It’s enough under the statute that you assemble one of the chemicals — you don’t need the entire set of chemicals necessary to make the drug. As long as you knowingly assemble one of the components, and have the intent to manufacture a controlled substance, you can be charged with illegal assembly of drugs.
If you’ve been charged with illegal assembly of drugs, you face a serious felony offense. If you’re convicted, you could spend months or years in prison, depending on where the offense was committed, what chemicals were involved, and whether you have prior drug convictions. You may have to pay thousands of dollars in fines, and you may lose your driver’s license.
However, an experienced drug defense lawyer may be able to help you through this stressful and troubling legal situation. There may be ways that a criminal defense lawyer can help you fight the charge and try to get it dismissed, or try to improve your outcome so that you face penalties that are less severe.
Penalties for Illegal Assembly of Drugs
Illegal assembly of a Schedule I or Schedule II drug other than methamphetamine is a third-degree felony in Ohio. The penalties may include a sentence of 9 to 36 months in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
When the illegal assembly of drugs offense is committed near a school or a juvenile, the offense is a second-degree felony and may be punished with a sentence of 2 to 8 years in prison and a fine of up to $15,000. Under Ohio Rev. Code 2925.01, committing an offense in the vicinity of a school means committing it on school premises, in school building, or within 1,000 feet of school premises — even if you’re not aware that you’re that you’re on or near school premises.
Ohio law looks even more harshly on the assembly of chemicals that can be used to make methamphetamine. It’s still a third-degree felony under Ohio Rev. Code 2925.041 to assemble the chemicals used to make meth, but there is a presumption that you will serve prison time in the range of 9 to 36 months. If you have two or more prior felony drug abuse convictions, and one of them was for possession or assembly of chemicals to manufacture drugs, then an additional conviction for assembling the chemicals to make meth carries a mandatory sentence of at least 5 years.
Other Consequences of Conviction
Ohio law provides that when you’re convicted of illegal assembly of drugs a court may suspend or revoke your driver’s license. The suspension or revocation also applies when you hold a commercial driver’s license, which can affect your livelihood if you need a CDL for your job or to earn a living.
A conviction also will result in a permanent criminal record as a felony drug offender. That can have many effects on your life beyond the prospect of prison time, fines, and loss of your driving privileges.
- Many employers will not hire someone with a felony record, particularly when the offense involves drugs.
- Landlords may be unwilling to rent to you.
- If you have an Ohio license to practice law, medicine, nursing, pharmacy, or another profession requiring a license, you may lose your license when you get a felony drug conviction.
- If you aren’t a United States citizen, you may be denied a visa, green card, or citizenship. If you have a visa or green card, it may be revoked.
- If you are a college student, you may lose your financial aid after a drug conviction. If you were thinking of applying to college, your application may be denied and you may be unable to get federal aid such as grants or loans to pay for school.
Defenses to an Illegal Assembly of Drugs Charge
To convict you of illegal assembly of drugs, a prosecutor must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you:
- Assembled one or more chemicals that could be used to make a Schedule I or Schedule II drug
- Did so knowingly
- Did so with the intent of making a Schedule I or Schedule II controlled substance
If the prosecutor is unable to prove any one of those things, your defense lawyer may be able to get your charge dismissed or reduced. Your lawyer may have a good chance at fighting the charge when:
- The chemical was misidentified and is not a chemical that could be used to make a Schedule I or Schedule II controlled substance
- You did not have the intent to use the chemical to make a Schedule I or Schedule II controlled substance
- You did not knowingly assemble the chemical or chemicals
Your Columbus drug attorney also may have a good chance at fighting your charge if the police violated your rights while conducting their investigation, collecting evidence, searching you or your property, or conducting your arrest. When one of those happens, your criminal defense lawyer may be able to get evidence suppressed, which in turn may result in your case being dismissed or your charge reduced. Some common procedural errors that may aid your defense include:
- The police failed to get a warrant to search you or your property
- The police didn’t have probable cause to search you or your property without a warrant
- The police arrested you based on a traffic stop and had no probable cause to stop you
- The police inappropriately used a drug-sniffing dog to find evidence in your case
- The police had no reasonable suspicion to arrest you
- The police failed to administer your Miranda rights
- The police used illegal wiretapping or surveillance to gather evidence against you
However, every case has its own unique blend of facts, evidence, and circumstances. An experienced Columbus drug attorney can help you understand what options might be available to you in your individual case.
Contact a Columbus Drug Manufacturing Lawyer at Luftman, Heck & Associates
When you hire an experienced drug manufacturing lawyer from Luftman, Heck, & Associates, we promise to stand by your side throughout the entirety of the legal process. Call us today at (614) 500-3836 for a free consultation on your case and to find out how we may be able to help you with your drug manufacturing charge.
For over a decade, the Columbus criminal defense attorneys at LHA have successfully represented clients on criminal offenses ranging from minor misdemeanors to first degree felonies. That extensive previous experience will enable us to better help you.