Mississippi law casts a broad net when it comes to outlawing “controlled substances.” Mississippi law states that it is illegal to knowingly or intentionally possess, sell, barter, exchange, or manufacture a controlled substance. Unless, of course, you are authorized to do so by law. Drug crimes come with a variety of penalties, depending largely on the schedule the drug is considered. In Mississippi there are five schedules, Schedule I Controlled Substances being what are considered to be the most dangerous and lacking any medicinal use, while Schedule V Controlled Substances are considered less dangerous.
The penalties for violating the laws of Mississippi as to possessing controlled substances are as follows:
A controlled substance classified in Schedule I or II, except marijuana and synthetic cannabinoids:
- (A) If less than one-tenth (0.1) gram or two (2) dosage units, the violation is a misdemeanor and punishable by imprisonment for not more than one (1) year or a fine of not more than One Thousand Dollars ($ 1,000.00), or both.
- (B) If one-tenth (0.1) gram or more or two (2) or more dosage units, but less than two (2) grams or ten (10) dosage units, by imprisonment for not more than three (3) years or a fine of not more than Fifty Thousand Dollars ($ 50,000.00), or both.
- (C) If two (2) or more grams or ten (10) or more dosage units, but less than ten (10) grams or twenty (20) dosage units, by imprisonment for not more than eight (8) years or a fine of not more than Two Hundred Fifty Thousand Dollars ($ 250,000.00), or both;
- (D) If ten (10) or more grams or twenty (20) or more dosage units, but less than thirty (30) grams or forty (40) dosage units, by imprisonment for not less than three (3) years nor more than twenty (20) years or a fine of not more than Five Hundred Thousand Dollars ($ 500,000.00), or both.
As you can see, the penalties for simply possessing Schedule I-II controlled substances can be harsh. While Marijuana is still considered a Schedule I drug, it is treated more leniently up to a point.
Marijuana and synthetic cannabinoids:
- 1. If thirty (30) grams or less of marijuana or ten (10) grams or less of synthetic cannabinoids, by a fine of not less than One Hundred Dollars ($ 100.00) nor more than Two Hundred Fifty Dollars ($ 250.00).
- A second conviction under this section within two (2) years is a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of Two Hundred Fifty Dollars ($ 250.00), not more than sixty (60) days in the county jail, and mandatory participation in a drug education program approved by the Division of Alcohol and Drug Abuse of the State Department of Mental Health, unless the court enters a written finding that a drug education program is inappropriate.
- A third or subsequent conviction under this paragraph (2)(A) within two (2) years is a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of not less than Two Hundred Fifty Dollars ($ 250.00) nor more than One Thousand Dollars ($ 1,000.00) and confinement for not more than six (6) months in the county jail.
These penalties can be increased based on a variety of circumstances including whether a vehicle is involved.