Thanks largely to its proximity to New York, a massive market for illicit drugs, Connecticut has long been a popular way station for illegal drugs. Factor in the fact that its big neighbor to the south has some of the strictest drug laws in the country, and Connecticut's cocaine laws have been steadily put to work over the years. Due to the violence surrounding cocaine trafficking, distribution, and use, Connecticut authorities crack down heavily on the possession and sale of cocaine, in both powder and rock form. This is a brief overview of cocaine laws in Connecticut.
State Cocaine Laws
The possession, sale, or trafficking of cocaine is a felony in most states. Connecticut cocaine laws are similar to cocaine laws in other states, going up in severity and punishment with multiple offenses.
Cocaine Statutes in Connecticut
The charges and penalties under Connecticut cocaine laws are listed below.
||21a 240; 243, 278
||7 yrs. and/or $50,000; Subsequent offense: 15 yrs. and/or $100,000; Third offense: 25 yrs. and/or $250,000
||15 yrs. and/or $50,000; 1 oz. (or ? g. in free-base form) or more: 5-20 yrs. minimum, to life maximum (by a non-drug dependent person); Subsequent offense: 10-25 yrs.; Within 1000 ft. of school: additional mandatory 3 yrs.; court may suspend mandatory minimum sentence if person is under 18 or lacks mental capacity
Of course, cocaine is regulated not just by Connecticut at the state level, but at the federal level as well. Federal drug laws prohibit everything from simple cocaine possession all the way from manufacturing and cultivation to trafficking and distribution. Drug convictions in general can carry severe penalties and for cocaine especially. The penalties often vary depending on whether you have prior drug convictions and the quantity of drugs involved.
It's possible that some prosecutors could offer a plea bargain to a lower-level offender in exchange for help building a case against higher-level producers and dealers. And some jurisdictions now have specialized “drug courts” that can help first or second-time drug crime defendants avoid a jail sentence and instead spend time in treatment or other options.
Connecticut Cocaine Laws: Related Resources
Social norms regarding drugs, and the state laws that reflect them, are constantly changing. While marijuana may be gaining legal acceptance in some states, cocaine certainly has not. You can visit FindLaw's Drug Charges section for additional resources and introductory information. If you would like legal help regarding a drug case or in understanding local drug laws, you can contact a Connecticut drug crime attorney.