Possession of CDS in Motor Vehicle NJSA 39:4-49.1

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New Jersey CDS in a Motor Vehicle Attorney

In addition to being charged with possession or distribution of marijuana, cocaine, heroin, LSD, meth, etc., if the offense involves the operation of a motor vehicle while in possession of  CDS, the police can charge the defendant with the motor vehicle offense of Possession of CDS in a motor vehicle. If convicted of this offense, the court will suspend your license for a period of up to two years. This is in addition to the penalties that you will be facing in connection with the underlying drug possession or distribution offense. The statute penalizing possession of CDS in a car follows:

N.J.S.A. 39:4-49.1

No person shall operate a motor vehicle on any highway while knowingly having in his possession or in the motor vehicle on any highway any controlled dangerous substance as classified in Schedules I, II, III, IV, and V of the “New Jersey Controlled Dangerous Substances Act, ” P.L. 1970, c. 226 (C. 24:21 et seq.) or any prescription legend drug, unless the person has obtained the substance or drug from, or on a valid written prescription of, a duty licensed physician, veterinarian, dentist or other medical practitioner licensed to write prescriptions intended for the treatment or prevention of disease in man or animals or unless the person possesses a controlled dangerous substance pursuant to a lawful order of a practitioner or lawfully possesses a Schedule V substance.

A person who violates this section shall be fined not less than $50.00 and shall forthwith forfeit his right to operate a motor vehicle for a period of 2 years from the date of his conviction.

As a lawyer who routinely defends those charged with drug related offenses, I am fully aware that the severity of the potential penalties upon conviction for possession of CDS in a motor vehicle can affect the defendant more adversely than a conviction for the underlying drug charge.

Nonetheless, there are many defense strategies which  your defense lawyer will be able to exploit to help you avoid this life altering event. If you have any questions regarding possession of CDS in an automobile, or any other drug related crime, please call our office.

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