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What is possession with intent to distribute?

Once the red and blue flashing lights have subsided and the anxiety associated with a criminal charge dissipates, those charged with a charge often have a lot of questions. First of all, being charged with a crime is not the same as being convicted of one. This fact is always important to remember.

Possession with intent to distribute is different than other drug crimes. The main difference is that possession with intent to distribute involves attempting to sell drugs as opposed to just drug use. Sometimes, this charge is accompanied with a drug use charge as well. One has to be guilty of both the possession and the intent to distribute elements at the same time to be charged with this crime.

One cannot merely be charged with possession or intent to distribute singularly and face the charges that can occur when the two are put together. Taken separately, the charges are not as serious. However, when they are together, it can be very serious for the accused. Taking the charge of possession with intent to distribute and its potential severity is important for the accused to understand what they are up against.

It is often best for the accused prepare a strong defense, which tells their side of the story. Every person accused of a crime can have their day in court. Federal and state laws can come into play when accused of a crime like possession with intent to distribute. It's possible one could face charges in both state and federal court depending on what charges are brought forth.

Source:, "Possession with the Intent to Distribute," Accessed May 1, 2017

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