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Pennsylvania Drug Manufacturing Laws

Overview of Pennsylvania Drug Manufacturing Laws

Drug manufacturing of any controlled substance in Pennsylvania is against the law. State law enforcement agencies have increased their efforts to combat this crime. Controlled substances include illegal drugs and narcotics (i.e. marijuana, cocaine, methamphetamines, heroin, etc.) To prove a case for drug manufacturing, a prosecutor must show beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant manufactured an illegal drug in Pennsylvania and did not have licenses to do so. Some common examples are cultivating marijuana, operating a drug lab, or manufacturing methamphetamines.

Penalties and Sentences

The charge for drug manufacturing in Pennsylvania is typically a misdemeanor (certain misdemeanors carry prison sentences in Pennsylvania). Drug manufacturing charges can carry prison sentences of one to three years and/or a fine of up to $25,000. The factors determining the penalty are: prior convictions and the nature of the drug manufacturing crime committed. In certain situations, a prosecutor may agree to a plea bargain for a lesser charge in exchange for the defendant pleading guilty or for information for a higher priority investigation.

Specific Drugs

With respect to marijuana, Pennsylvania law charges the cultivation of up to nine plants as a misdemeanor. The cultivation of 10 to 21 plants is a felony punishable by a mandatory minimum sentence of one year in prison and a $5,000 fine, while growing 22 or more plants can result in a mandatory three-year sentence and $15,000 fine. The manufacturing of hashish or other marijuana concentrates is felony, which carries a prison sentence of up to five years and up to $15,000 in fines.

The manufacturing of methamphetamine is charged as a felony, which carries a penalty of up to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $100,000.

Code Section

Pennsylvania Health and Safety Code,Title 35, Section 780-113 et. seq.


Defenses to Drug Manufacturing Charges

  • Lack of knowledge
  • Lack of intent to deliver any of the manufactured drugs to another person
  • Insufficient quantity of the drug
  • Drugs did not belong to the defendant
  • The defendant is a practitioner licensed to manufacture such drugs in good faith in the course of his/her professional practice
  • Unlawful search and seizure
  • Entrapment


See above, misdemeanor or felony

Federal charges possible?

Yes, depending if your case crossed state lines

Note: State laws are constantly changing -- please contact a Pennsylvania criminal defense attorney or conduct your own legal research to verify the state law(s) you are researching.

Pennsylvania Criminal Laws Related Resources:

Get Legal Help with Your Drug Manufacturing Case in Pennsylvania

While a criminal drug case is nothing like what you see on television, it's still a serious matter. If you've been charged with drug manufacturing in Pennsylvania, you likely have many questions about possible defenses, the law, and if you can be charged with a federal crime. It's best to speak with a drug crime lawyer in Pennsylvania today to learn more about the charges you're facing and the defenses that may be available for your case.

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