The state of California has stringent rules related to controlled substances. Anyone arrested manufacturing controlled substances risks severe punishment according to California laws. If you are detained allegedly for manufacturing drugs, we invite you to get in touch with us at the Los Angeles Criminal Lawyer. Our lawyers are well versed in drug crime laws and can help defend you.
Definition of Manufacturing Controlled Substances In California
Everything related to the illegal manufacture of a controlled substance in California is defined under Health and Safety (HS) 11379.6. Anyone arrested for the production, compounding, converting, producing, processing, or preparing a controlled substance through direct or indirect chemical extraction or chemical synthesis is guilty under this statute.
For a prosecutor to successfully charge an arrestee under HS 11379.6, there are several factors that he or she must prove. These factors are referred to as elements of the crime. In crimes related to manufacturing of controlled substance, the elements of the crime are as follows:
- The arrestee compounded, manufactured, produced, derived, prepared, or processed a controlled substance
- The defendant was aware that the content that he or she was manufacturing, producing, making, or processing was a controlled substance
The defendant does not necessarily have to complete the manufacturing process to be an offender under HS 11379.6. One could be charged with the crime if he or she was in the beginning steps or the intermediate steps necessary for the production of the controlled substance. In such a case, the prosecutor can charge you with the crime by proving the following:
- You engaged in synthesis, preparation, or processing of a chemical that matches a controlled substance
- The chemical substance is part of the components needed in the manufacture of a controlled substance
Controlled Substance in California
In California, anything to do with a controlled substance is highlighted in the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) and imposed under the California Health and Safety Code. The drugs are classified into schedules that fall into two categories. These categories are based on the potential of the drug components and the medicinal properties of the drug acquired.
Generally, the type of controlled substances in California and the United States are as follows:
Penalties for Manufacture of Controlled Substance
Violation of HS 11379.6 is a felony in California that is punishable by:
- Imprisonment in state prison for a maximum of seven years
- A fine that amounts to $50,000
Please note, several factors determine the kind of prison sentence that one will receive. These factors are as follows:
If you have ever had previous convictions to drug-related crimes, you are at risk of getting a longer sentence. Some of the previous convictions that would enhance your sentence include:
- Possessing methamphetamine with the intention of selling
- Possessing a controlled substance to sell it
- Transportation or sale of a controlled substance
- Manufacture of a controlled substance
- The sale of methamphetamine
Manufacture of Large Amounts of Drugs
The production of a large number of drugs can also lead to severe penalties. Drugs that can lead to enhanced sentences include PCP, GHCB, and methamphetamine. Possession of large volumes of these drugs can also lead to additional consecutive jail time.
Causing Serious Injuries or Death
You are also at risk of facing additional penalties if another person gets injured or dies during your drug manufacture. Every person who dies or gets injured leads to an additional one year in your punishments. However, you cannot receive any additional penalties if the deceased person is an accomplice in your drug manufacture operations.
Manufacture of Drugs Around Children
Manufacturing drugs around children can also lead to additional penalties. If you are convicted for the production of a drug around a minor below sixteen years, you will have additional imprisonment in state prison for two years. If the course of your drug manufacture leads to grave injuries to the minor, you will get an addition of five years.
Other than fining and imprisonment, several other consequences follow after one is sentenced for the manufacture of drugs. These consequences are as follows:
Production of controlled substances has adverse effects on the offender since it is part of the crimes that involve moral turpitude. In such crimes, a non-citizen can be deported or considered as inadmissible back to the country.
Furthermore, the manufacture of a controlled substance is an aggravated felony based on California laws. In such types of crimes, deportation is mandatory. The offender also cannot enjoy other reliefs for an aggravated felony conviction. This includes:
- Cancellation of removal for a non-citizen under 8 U.S.C section 1229b(a)(3)
- Relief from asylum
- Permit to re-apply for readmission to the United States after deportation
How Manufacture of Controlled Substance Affects your Gun Right
When a defendant is accused of the production of a controlled substance, he or she risks losing his or her gun rights. Any convicted felon is prohibited from buying or owning a gun under California laws. Therefore, since making a drug is considered a felony, a conviction under this crime will make one lose his or her gun right.
Possibility of Expungement after Violating HS 11379.6
Anyone convicted under this law cannot have his or her case expunged. Expungement favors the erasing of a sentence but does not support any crime punishable by a prison sentence.
Possible Legal Defenses for Manufacture of Controlled Substance
Once you hire an attorney, you expect him or her to employ relevant legal defenses to have the court dismiss your case or reduce it to a minor charge. Here are some of the possible legal defenses for the manufacture of control substances that your attorney should consider.
The Process was Only Preparatory
An offender must begin the manufacturing process to be considered guilty of the crime. If one did not complete the processing or was in the beginning phase, this does not count as the actual manufacturing.
The mere preparation process is not considered a crime under HS 11379.6, which helps in the dismissal of the charges.
Unlawful Search and Seizure
A police officer can only arrest a suspect if there is enough evidence to prove the fact of offense. Therefore, the investigating officers have a mandate of investigating the offender only via a legal warrant. If the officer does not produce a search warrant, this can lead to the exclusion of the evidence, which dismisses or reduces the case.
In numerous crimes related to controlled substances, arrests are made by undercover cops. However, a police officer can lure you into committing the crime, which makes it an entrapment. A situation could turn out to be entrapment if the police officer used the following to persuade someone to commit the alleged crime:
This kind of legal defense works if the defendant can prove that he or she committed an illegal action only because of entrapment.
This is the most straightforward legal defense that removes your criminal liability. In this case, you will argue out that you did not commit any crime. You do not have to prove anything but should provide documents, testimonies, and other evidence that will support your innocence.
This is an affirmative type of defense. In this case, you should prove the defense by showing that you were not at the scene of the crime, and someone else who appears close to you was involved in the crime.
To support this kind of legal defense, you must include testimonies from other people, surveillance footage of your whereabouts, receipts of your restaurants, and phone records to prove your location during the scene of the crime.
Mistaken of Facts
Sometimes an offender can be unaware of the elements of the crime that he or she has been charged with. In a case that involves the manufacture of controlled substances, this legal defense usually works when the products included in the alleged production of drugs are not controlled substances. They would probably have similar chemical content hence the confusion.
Duress, also referred to as coercion, is another type of defense that can work when charged with the manufacture of a controlled substance. In this legal defense, there must be someone threatening you through force, violence, or threats to your family, leading to your manufacture of drugs.
In drug crimes, this kind of situation is common, especially when there is the involvement of a group of people that get involved in criminal drug activities such as the mafias.
Abandonment or Withdrawal
This kind of defense works when the defendant intended to commit a crime but withdrew from the participation. Your attorney should prove that you successfully abandoned or withdrew from the crime by stopping from the commissioning of the manufacturing process. However, your action of stopping from undertaking the criminal activity should not have participated in the completion of the planned crime as well.
Statute of Limitations
The law of limitation is a procedural defense. It only works when the specific window that the prosecution should file the charges has closed, and the prosecutor can no longer bring the case to court. In the manufacturing of controlled substances, the statute of limitations is three years since it is a felony and punishable by imprisonment of a maximum of seven years. Therefore, if a case is brought forward after three years of discovery, you can ask the court to dismiss your charges.
Crimes Related to Manufacture of Controlled Substances
Five crimes are related to the manufacturing of controlled substances. These crimes involve the same element of the crime, which is the controlled substance. The kind of offenses related to the manufacture of controlled substances include:
HS 11351: Possession for Sale of a Controlled Substance
Under HS 11351, it is illegal to possess a controlled substance. It also prohibits one from purchasing particular drugs that are for sales such as codeine and Vicodin. For a prosecutor to successfully convict one under this statute, he or she must consider the following:
- You purchased or possessed the drug
- You knew that the drug was controlled in nature
- The drugs were enough for usage or sale
- You possessed the drugs intending to sell or purchased the drugs to resell them.
Possession for sale of a controlled substance is a felony in and is punishable by either:
- Probation in a county jail for a maximum of a year
- Two, three or four years in a county jail
- A fine that can reach up to $20,000
You can be convicted for an additional violating HS 11351 if apprehended with a controlled substance such as cocaine and cocaine base in the following ways:
- Three years if the controlled substance is over a kilogram by its weight
- Five years of imprisonment if it exceeds four kilograms
- Ten years if the substance is more than ten kilograms
- Fifteen years if the controlled substance exceeds twenty kilograms
- Twenty years if the controlled substance exceeds forty kilograms, and
- Twenty-five years if the controlled substance is more than eighty kilograms
If the defendant gets an additional sentence under one of the above-stated weight enhancement, one can also face a fine that amounts to $8,000,000. You are also at risk of further three-years imprisonment if you have prior felony conviction related to drug crimes that involve more than mere usage of the drugs.
HS 11352: Sale of a Controlled Substance
Under Health and Safety Code 11352, it is illegal to sell or transport certain types of controlled substances such as cocaine, peyote, and heroin. Under this statute, there is a prohibition on the following:
- Selling of a controlled substance
- Transportation of a controlled substance to sell them
- Furnishing or administration to drugs to other people
- Giving a drug away
- Offering to do any of the above action
Violation of the HS 11352 is a felony, and the consequences include:
- Felony or formal probation
- Imprisonment in a county jail for three, four, or five years under California's realignment program or incarceration for three, six, or nine years if you are guilty of transportation of the controlled substance within two or more California counties
- A maximum fine of $20,000
A suspect is not eligible for felony probation if the following factors are right:
- You are convicted for selling or volunteering to sell 14.25 grams of heroin or more
- You are convicted with the sale or offering the sale of any amount of heroin, and you have a prior conviction under HS 11352 or 11351
- You face a sentence of the sale or offering to sell cocaine, methamphetamine and have a previous sentence for sale, offering to sell or possession for sale of any controlled substance
HS 11366: Operating a Drug House
Under California Health and Safety Code 11366, it is unlawful to open or maintain a place with the intention of selling, giving away, or allowing other people to use a drug continually at a particular site. Under this statute, a 'place' usually defines a house or an apartment, although it does not necessarily have to be those two places. It can also be a motel or room hotel.
Please note, an offender is guilty under HS 11366 if the 'place' was opened and maintained to provide the opportunity to other people to use drugs. Keeping a place for your mere usage does not make you guilty of this crime, but it can support a conviction for simple possession of drugs.
Convictions under HS 11366 is a wobbler, meaning that one can be charged with a misdemeanor or a felony. If one gets convicted with a misdemeanor, the possible consequences that might apply are:
- Imprisonment in a county jail for a maximum of a year
- A maximum fine of $1,000
If convicted with a felony, the possible penalties that might apply are:
- Imprisonment in the California state prison for sixteen months, two years, or three years
- A maximum fine of $10,000
HS 11366.5: Renting a Place to distribute Controlled Substances
Under California Health and Safety Code 11366.5, it is illegal to rent or lease a room, space, or building with the purpose of manufacturing or distributing drugs.
HS 11383: Possession of Materials Needed in the Manufacture of Controlled Substances
Under California Health and Safety Code 11383, it is illegal to possess particular types of chemicals to use them to produce a controlled substance. The main drugs that are involved in violating this health and safety code include PCP or methamphetamine or any analog of those two drugs.
Violating HS 11383 is a California felony, and the possible consequences that apply are:
- Felony or formal probation
- Imprisonment in a county jail for two, four, or six years while serving under California's realignment program
- A maximum fine of $10,000
You can also receive an additional and consecutive:
- Two years of imprisonment if the material used to manufacture the above-stated drugs were found in a structure where a child below the age of sixteen is present and
- Five years of imprisonment if the content for drug manufacture caused significant bodily injuries for a child below the age of sixteen
Find a Los Angeles Criminal Lawyer Near Me
You require someone with substantial legal background to defend you against the charges of manufacturing drugs. This is because the state prosecutors treat drug crimes seriously, and they will always press for maximum penalties. The attorney should also be familiar with California criminal laws and how the court processes work in the Los Angeles area. We invite you to get in touch with the Los Angeles Criminal Lawyer at 310-502-1314 if you are facing charges for manufacturing drugs. We are ready to evaluate your case and craft a suitable defense strategy that could see your case possibly dismissed or penalties reduced.