California law prohibits the possession of marijuana. That being said, there are many different laws with different consequences depending upon the quantity of marijuana possessed. The most common type of violation is 11357(B) of the Health and Safety Code. This section covers possession of marijuana under one (1) ounce total weight.
The maximum penalty for this misdemeanor offense is $100 plus penalty assessment or court tax. Although the majority of drug possession and sales offenses result in arrest, this offense only results in a citation to appear in court.
It is common for many people caught in this situation to just to plead guilty and pay the small fine to just get it over with, when they have been found to be in possession of a small quantity of Marijuana, This is a big mistake. Although seemingly minor, this guilty plea results in a misdemeanor conviction that goes on your criminal record. Even minor drug offenses like this, can create undue embarrassment, and have a negative affect if discovered, including loss of employment or not getting that job you want.
Our firm of experienced drug defense attorneys use preventative strategies, including narcotics anonymous classes in advance of any court date to show the prosecutor and judge the positive side of the client’s new awareness. Frequently, we are able to persuade the prosecutor to accept this effort as a form of rehabilation, thus creating an informal diversion program.
Although discretionary, this strategy has worked very successfully for many of our clients, and results in having the misdemeanor drug charge totally dismissed. The benefit of this strategy is that it creates no negative effect upon the clients criminal record or potential employment.