The Difference Between Drug Possession and Possession with Intent to Sell

While many drug laws are changing throughout the U.S. at the state level, most recreational drugs are still illegal under federal law. The most common of these are marijuana, cocaine, LSD, MDMA, and heroin, but they also include abuse of controlled substances without a prescription. If you are arrested on drug possession charges Fairfax va, one of the most important distinctions to understand is the difference between possession and possession with intent to sell.


What is Drug Possession?


You can be charged with drug possession if you have an illegal or controlled substance on your person, either holding it, keeping it in a pocket or shoe, or attempting to hide it in a body cavity. But to be brought up on drug possession charges Fairfax va, the drugs do not have to be on your person. If they are in your car or even home, you can be charged.


What is Possession with Intent to Sell?


Possession with intent to sell is a more serious offense. While it’s impossible for authorities to know and prove that you intend to sell or distribute drugs illegally to others, you can be charged if evidence supports that theory. Usually, this means you either have packing materials typically associated with drug dealing nearby, or you have a bulk amount of drugs that can reasonably be expected to be for more than just personal use.


An Important Point


You cannot face drug possession charges Fairfax va with intent to sell if you do not have the drugs on your person or close enough in proximity for them to be under your control. If authorities merely suspect you are about to receive drugs to sell them, they cannot charge you until those drugs arrive and are in your control.

Federally, the sentencing guidelines dictate far more severe punishments for people charged with possession with intent to sell.