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Virginia Heroin Laws

Heroin and its related opiates (such as morphine, opium, and synthetic opioids) are strictly illegal under U.S. and state laws. In Virginia, heroin is classified in accordance with federal drug laws, and is therefore considered to be a Schedule I drug under Virginia law. Virginia’s heroin laws are relatively harsh and simple possession can result in a 12-month jail sentence and/or $2,500 fine. First-time offenders may be eligible for the state's drug abatement program, which provides treatment services and supervised probation instead of incarceration.

It should be noted that in Virginia, heroin need not be found directly on the defendant for him or her to be considered in possession of the drug. If the drug is found to be in the defendant’s exclusive control (only the defendant has access to it or it is in a place only the defendant would place it -- e.g. in the backseat of his or her automobile), the defendant may still be found in possession.

The main classifications and penalties for Virginia's heroin laws are listed in the following chart. See FindLaw's Drug Charges section for related articles and resources.

Code Section

54.1-3445; 18.2-247


Any amount: Class 5 felony (up to 12 months in jail and/or $2,500 fine)


5-40 yrs. and up to $500,000; If defendant proves he gave drug (1) not for profit, (2) not to an inmate, or (3) not for recipient to become addicted, then Class 5 felony; "Drug kingpin" if over 1 kg.: up to $1,000,000 and 20 yrs.-life (20 mandatory) Subsequent offense: at court or jury's discretion, subsequent offense 5 yrs. to life and/or $500,000; Sale to minor or within 1000 ft. of school: stricter penalties



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

More Information

For more information on Virginia’s heroin laws, feel free to click on the links listed below to access additional resources. You can also learn more about the laws relating to heroin and other drugs, in general, by browsing FindLaw’s drug charges section. Finally, if you have more specific questions or need legal representation, you may want to consider retaining or consulting a local lawyer who has experience defending drug crimes.

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Virginia Heroin Laws: Related Resources

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