In 2004, countries in Europe began to market synthetic cannabis for sale. It was not long before sales spread to the Western Hemisphere and for a while, synthetic marijuana sales and usage was extremely high. It was, until it was made illegal in NJ, sold in gas stations, head shops, and online under the names Spice and K2.
For a time in the mid 2000's, one could drive to a gas station in Toms River or Brick and purchase a pack of K2. One could also buy Spice in a head shop on the Point Pleasant Beach Boardwalk. However, because of studies that showed that the use of synthetic marijuana can cause severe mental distress, the state of NJ has marked this as an illegal narcotic.
Although the ingredients found in the products are not made from actual cannabis leaves, this type of drug is used to basically produce the same effects as marijuana use. It can cause most of the same symptoms and it can also cause acute psychosis if used for a prolonged period of time. Some other dangers of using this drug can include an increased likelihood of developing a chronic psychotic disorder and an increase in severe symptoms of other existing disorders.
For these reasons, among others, the state of New Jersey has made the sale and use of these synthetic marijuana products illegal. Anyone involved in the sale, distribution, or use of synthetic marijuana is breaking NJ laws.
Synthetic Marijuana: Possession Penalties
As with the possession of regular marijuana, in the state of NJ, possession of synthetic marijuana is a disorderly persons offense. If you have less than 50 grams of synthetic marijuana on your person, you can be sentenced to six months in jail and face up to $1,000 in fines. In addition, your driver's license may be revoked or suspended for up to six months.
If more than 50 grams of synthetic marijuana is possessed by an individual, they can be charged with a fourth degree crime and will face eighteen months in jail and up to $25,000 in fines in addition to other penalties like driver's license suspension.
Selling Synthetic Marijuana is a Crime
If you are caught selling or otherwise distributing synthetic marijuana, you will be charged with a crime. As with possession, the offense you are charged with depends upon the amount you have on your person.
Did you have less than one ounce? If so, you will be charged with a fourth degree crime and face up to eighteen months in New Jersey state prison. If you possessed more than one full ounce but less than five pounds, you will be charged with a third degree crime and face three to five years in New Jersey state prison. If you had more than five pounds, you can be convicted of a second degree crime with the possibility of spending ten years in a New Jersey prison.
Contact an Experienced Lawyer Today About Your Synthetic Marijuana Charge
Are you facing a synthetic marijuana charge? Did you buy a pack of Spice in Asbury Park? Did you sell a pack of Spice in Long Branch? If you or your loved one is facing a synthetic marijuana charge in New Jersey, do not attempt to face it on your own. Contact Villani & DeLuca in Point Pleasant Beach to speak with an experienced defense lawyer who is trained to meet the needs of residents of Ocean County and Monmouth County. We're here to help fight for your rights!