Understanding Possession of a Controlled Dangerous Substance Charges in NJ

If you’ve been charged with drug possession offenses in the State of New Jersey, it’s important to have the expertise of a leading drug defense lawyer on your side from the very beginning. Not only can your attorney explain the charges and defend your rights, he can also examine evidence, speak to witnesses and develop a strong case for your defense – whether you are looking to negotiate a plea or fight the case at trial

How New Jersey Classifies Controlled Dangerous Substances

The State of New Jersey regulates and controls the possession of many drugs, not just well-known illegal substances like heroin and marijuana, as well as the compounds used to manufacture these drugs. It does this through a system of five schedules – Schedule One being the most dangerous drugs most commonly at the root of addiction and drug abuse, while Schedule Five drugs are more recognized for their medical use rather than drug abuse.

What are the penalties for possessing a CDS in NJ? 

It is important to note that the possession of any CDS without a valid medical prescription is considered an offense. Here is a breakdown of the penalties you may face:

  • 3rd degree offense: Any amount, no matter how small, of a Schedule One, Two, Three or Four drug is penalized with a fine of up to $35,000 and/or 3-5 years in prison.
  • 4th degree offense: Any amount of a Schedule Five drug can mean a fine of up to $15,000 and/or 18 months of prison time.
  • Possession of a CDS near a school: If you are within 1,000 of a school or a school bus when the offense takes place, you may face a harsher sentence that includes 100 hours of community service.
  • Repeat offenses: Penalties will become harsher if you have already been convicted for one or more CDS offenses. Both the fine and the jail time may double in this event.

Don’t face CDS charges alone – Speak to a drug defense lawyer today 

If you are facing a criminal charge, you need a lawyer who can provide expert assistance as soon as possible. A former prosecutor is uniquely positioned to give you the advice you need to deliver a strong, effective representation of your case and fight it from every possible angle. If you want a criminal defense lawyer that you can trust to defend your case professionally and aggressively, contact us today and find out how Dennis Calo can help you.

The consultation is free, contact criminal defense attorney Dennis Calo now.

Original content posted on http://www.criminaldefense-nj.com/blog/understanding-possession-of-a-controlled-dangerous-substance-charges-in-nj/

What are some of the most common offenses in NJ?

Some of the most common crimes occurring in New Jersey are:

  • Theft – Unlawfully removing property from the possession of someone else without using force, violence or fraud.
  • Burglary – Unlawfully entering a structure such as a home or business in order to commit any offense however minor.
  • Robbery – The successful or attempted removal of someone’s property by force, threat of force or violence.
  • Criminal mischief – Willfully damaging property belonging to someone else, whether an individual, business or other entity.
  • Aggravated assault – A physical attack on someone else with the intent of inflicting severe injury.
  • Simple assault – This refers to a limited physical use of force that results in little or no injury to the victim.
  • Possession of weapons – The possession of illegal or controlled weapons without the necessary licenses.
  • Drug possession – The possession of an illegal or controlled substance.
  • Shoplifting – Unlawfully removing merchandise from a retail establishment without the knowledge or consent of the seller without paying for it.
  • Aggravated assault on a police officer – Can be as minor as a simple assault but is more serious since it is on a police officer.

If you are facing any of these charges or other criminal charges, it’s vital that you speak to an experienced criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible. The State of New Jersey’s law enforcement is zealous in pursuit of prosecuting criminal charges and with the right attorney at your side, you can be assured of a strategic, robust defense that will get you the best possible results – whether you choose to negotiate a plea deal or take your case to trial.

What cases will your criminal defense lawyer defend? 

While some attorneys are specialists in certain fields, others have the experience and knowledge to fight a wide range of criminal cases – and win. Respected by judges and prosecutors, Dennis Calo is a former prosecutor with over 40 years of legal expertise in defending criminal cases that include:

  • Homicide
  • Sex crimes
  • Drug crimes
  • Marijuana possession
  • Theft
  • Fraud
  • Assault and battery
  • Domestic violence
  • DWI/DUI offenses

No matter if you are facing a crime or a minor charge, you can rest assured that our legal team has the knowledge and legal resources to fight your case aggressively – the way you deserve. Even the most minor conviction will result in a permanent criminal record that can affect you and your family for life, so give your rights and your reputation the best possible protection.

The consultation and case evaluation is free, so contact us and speak to criminal defense lawyer Dennis Calo now.

 

This content was  originally posted at http://www.criminaldefense-nj.com/blog/what-are-some-of-the-most-common-offenses-in-nj/

7 things to know about marijuana possession

Over the last few years, laws throughout the United States have changed dramatically regarding marijuana use and possession, with some states legalizing medical and recreational use, and others continuing to implement harsh laws. To avoid confusion and facing serious penalties, read this information from a leading New Jersey marijuana defense attorney.

  1. The State of New Jersey allows the use of medical marijuana: New Jersey’s laws allow the use of medical marijuana for certain conditions, including cancer, HIV/AIDS, multiple sclerosis and other severe conditions. This is available under specific conditions from state-licensed dispensaries at a limit of two ounces a month.
  2. Possession of 50g or less is a minor offense: This is categorized as a disorderly person offense and can carry up to 6 months incarceration and a fine of up to $1,000.
  3. Possession of more than 50g is a serious offense: Categorized as a 4th degree crime, this can incur up to 18 months incarceration and a fine of up to $25,000.
  4. Possession within 1000 feet of a school: This adds 100 hours of community service to a sentence with an additional fine.
  5. First time disorderly person offenders have access to a diversionary program: This is known as Conditional Discharge and usually involves drug testing instead of jail time and removing the offense from the individual’s personal record as long as the drug tests are consistently negative and other rules are followed.
  6. How New Jersey treats distribution or possession with intent to distribute: These punishments vary according to the amount of marijuana for sale or distribution as well as the nature of the buyers (for example, minors or pregnant women carry more severe penalties) and the proximity of the crime to certain public property. This can range from a 4th degree crime carrying 18 months incarceration and a fine of up to $25,000 for less than one ounce to a 1st degree crime carrying 10-20 years incarceration and a fine of up to $300,000 for 25 lbs or more.
  7. Even the smallest possession charge can destroy your future: Something as simple as marijuana paraphernalia, traces of marijuana and even finding a joint on your property can land you in a significant amount of trouble with law enforcement. Without the right legal advice and representation, even the most minor marijuana possession charge could go down on your permanent record, your driving license can be revoked and you will have to live with a lifelong stigma that can destroy your family and career.

Don’t let a marijuana possession charge ruin your future – speak to the right attorney today

Marijuana possession and distribution charges are zealously pursued by law enforcement, and whether you simply found yourself in the wrong place at the wrong time, were set up by an informant or arrested as a result of a misunderstanding, these charges bring severe penalties as well as lifelong repercussions. As a marijuana defense attorney and former prosecutor, Dennis Calo knows exactly what it takes to properly challenge these charges, build the strongest possible defense and do what it takes to minimize the impact a conviction could have on your future.

Skilled at investigating cases, preparing defenses and representing clients at trial, Dennis treats each case with the individual attention and dedication that it deserves. From the moment you call, to developing your strategy and fighting your charges, he will be there each step of the way.

If you want a trusted and highly recognized attorney to defend your marijuana charges professionally and aggressively, ask us for a free case evaluation. Your freedom deserves a fight, contact Dennis Calo today.

 

This content was originally posted at http://www.criminaldefense-nj.com/blog/7-things-to-know-about-marijuana-possession/

5 Things to Know about Sex Crimes in New Jersey

  1. In New Jersey, ‘sexual assault’ is a term used to cover many types of sex crimes. This includes rape, statutory rape (when the victim is under the age of 18) and non-consensual sex (the victim is unable to give consent, for example, he or she is unconscious).
  2. Sexual assault is considered a felony in New Jersey. Penalties will depend on the exact nature of the crime, but it is generally considered a 2nd degree crime carrying a penalty of up to 10 years behind bars.
  3. Conviction means registering as a sex offender. When someone is found guilty of sexual assault, they have to register as a sexual offender with the State of New Jersey. This is a sentence that carries life-long implications and restrictions.
  4. Aggravated sexual assault is a more serious charge. This charge is laid when there are additional circumstances to consider. For example, if the victim was under 13 years old, if a weapon was used or if the assault occurred during the commission of another crime. This is treated as a 1st degree crime with a potential 20 years behind bars.
  5. New Jersey has strict penalties for other sex crimes. These include child abuse, sexual contact (touching) and lewdness (exhibitionism). Child abuse cases in particular are often dealt with more severely than other sexual assault cases and carry even more devastating implications for the reputation and future of anyone convicted of such a crime.

As you can see, sexual assault cases are dealt with severely by the law enforcement and justice system, which is why it is vitally important that you have the right defense attorney by your side if you are facing any of these charges. There are many defense strategies that work against these charges and your attorney will be able to evaluate the strength of the case against you and work with you to develop a strong and aggressive defense.

Get the Robust and Effective Defense you Deserve

Dennis Calo is a sex crimes defense attorney with over 40 years of experience behind him. As a former prosecutor, he understands both sides of the case to provide clients with the best possible defense against a wide range of charges, including sex crimes.

Skilled at investigating cases, preparing defenses and representing clients at trial, Dennis treats each case with the individual attention and dedication that it deserves. From the moment you call, to developing your strategy and fighting your charges, he will be there each step of the way.

If you want a trusted and highly recognized attorney to defend your sex crime charges professionally and aggressively, contact us today for a free case evaluation and find out how Dennis Calo can help you.

 

This content was originally published at http://www.criminaldefense-nj.com/blog/5-things-to-know-about-sex-crimes-in-new-jersey/

DWI related offenses and factors for sentencing

In the USA, DUI (Driving Under the Influence) and DWI (Driving While Intoxicated) is considered a serious offense. In New Jersey, they are considered to be a single category and carry some of the strictest sentences in the country. As the prosecution pursues them aggressively, it is vital to have experienced, professional representation on your side from a leading DUI and DWI defense lawyer in New Jersey as soon as possible.

What sentences can be carried by a DUI/DWI conviction? 

DUI/DWI charges can change according to the exact nature of your specific case, but generally they will include a possible combination of:

  • Jail time – Up to 30 days for a first offense, up to 90 days for a second offense and up to 180 days for a third offense.
  • Driving license suspension – Between 3 months and a year for a first offense, up to 2 years for a second offense and up to 10 years for a third offense.
  • Fines – Between $250-$500 for a first offense, up to $1,000 for a second offense and $1,000 for a third offense.

In order to determine whether it is a first, second or third offense and therefore determine sentencing, the state applies a lookback period of 10 years. Additional penalties may include community service and/or the installation of an ignition interlock device.

DUI/DWI charges and implied consent 

In order to determine if you are over the legal blood alcohol content limit, the authorities have to perform a blood test – which you can refuse. However, New Jersey has an implied consent law which means that an automatic fine and license suspension will occur in the event of your refusal. This is subject to change, but currently stands at 7 months suspension for a first time offense, 2 years for a second time offense and 10 years for a third time offense.

Don’t let these charges ruin your life – Speak to a NJ DUI or DWI defense lawyer today 

If you have been charged with an offense, no matter how minor, you can benefit from effective legal representation. Dennis Calo, a former prosecutor, offers over 40 years of experience and insight into both sides of the legal system to build a strong and robust defense for each of his valued clients.

If you want an experienced defense lawyer that you can trust to defend your DUI or DWI professionally and aggressively, contact our criminal defense law firm today and find out how Dennis Calo can help you.

 

This content was originally posted at http://www.criminaldefense-nj.com/blog/dwi-related-offenses-and-factors-for-sentencing/

What are the main types of fraud addressed by the NJ criminal code?

Fraud charges are indictable offenses in New Jersey that can cover a wide range of crimes, ranging from credit card fraud to insurance fraud and everything in between. The sentences for these charges also vary according to different factors, including the amount of money stolen, and include jail time and heavy fines.

If you have been charged with fraud or theft, or suspect that you may face these charges, it’s important to speak to an experienced defense attorney. With the right defense, you have the best chance of avoiding potentially life-altering prison time, fines and a permanent criminal record.

 What types of fraud are most common in New Jersey? 

  • Credit card fraud: There are two sets of laws that cover credit card fraud, firstly dealing with how the credit card was obtained and secondly, how it was used. Charges in these categories include credit card theft, credit card application fraud, fraudulent credit card creation, buying or selling credit cards, fraudulently signing a credit card and fraudulent use of a credit card.
  • Insurance fraud: This can be charged as a third degree indictable offense (felony) and carry a second degree charge and even stricter penalties if it is a repeat offense. These laws cover information that is submitted to an insurance company that misleads the company in order to acquire an insurance payout or policy renewal, and includes any insurance company – including Worker’s Compensation claims as well as Medicaid, benefits, unemployment insurance and auto insurance.
  • Telemarketing fraud: These laws cover scams that are committed as or under the guise of a telemarketer and are designed to convince the victim to send money, attend a sales presentation or give out their credit card number in exchange for an often worthless prize. These charges carry penalties that include fines, injunctions, damages and class action lawsuits.

What does the State of New Jersey have to prove in fraud cases? 

As with other criminal charges, the State has to provide enough evidence to prove the charges beyond a reasonable doubt. The elements the State will focus on will be determined by each individual case, but are likely to include:

  • Intent to defraud: They have to prove that you intentionally mislead the victim in order to commit fraud.
  • Misrepresentation of material fact: The victim has to have been misled regarding a fact that is relevant to the transaction.
  • Knowledge of the misrepresentation: The prosecution has to be able to prove that you knew you were misleading the victim or that you knew you were misleading a material fact.
  • Injury to the victim: In certain cases, the prosecution must be able to show that the victim suffered actual damages as a result of the fraud. 

Facing fraud or theft charges in NJ? Speak to a leading defense attorney today 

Dennis Calo is a highly respected and successful criminal defense attorney in New Jersey with over 40 years of experience. As a former prosecutor, he understands both sides of his cases and is able to provide clients with the best possible defense against a wide range of charges, including theft and fraud.

If you want a criminal defense lawyer that you can trust to defend your case professionally and aggressively, contact us at our law firm today and find out how Dennis Calo can help you.

This content was originally posted at http://www.criminaldefense-nj.com/blog/what-are-the-main-types-of-fraud-addressed-by-the-nj-criminal-code/

The difference between indictable offenses and disorderly persons offenses

In the State of New Jersey, offenses are characterized at indictable offenses and disorderly persons offenses rather than felonies and misdemeanors. Generally speaking, an indictable offense is more serious and similar to a felony and therefore carries a more severe penalty of over 6 months in jail. A disorderly persons offense is usually a more minor offense similar to a misdemeanor that carries a less severe penalty.

Regarding assault and battery charges, they can fall into the category of indictable offenses or disorderly persons offenses depending on the unique situation of the case. Cases of simple assault will carry a minor sentence while aggravated assault will carry one more severe. The severity of the penalty will take the following into account:

  • The seriousness of the injury.
  • If you were acting purposely – i.e. causing the injury on purpose rather than accidentally.
  • If you were acting knowingly – i.e. knowing that your action would cause the injury
  • If you were acting recklessly – i.e. being aware that your actions could cause injury but acting regardless.
  • If you were acting with extreme indifference towards human life – i.e. acting regardless of the high probability of severe injury.
  • If you were using a deadly weapon, for example a firearm, knife, brick or any object that can reasonably be assumed to be used as a weapon.

What happens if you are charged with an indictable offense? 

Indictable offenses are handled by the Superior court within the country where the alleged offense was committed. Once charged, you will be taken before a judge and advised of your rights and the charges against you – but you will be unable to enter a plea at this stage. You will be able to apply for bail at this point.

Before your case can go to trial, it has to be reviewed by a Grand Jury. This process is simply to determine whether or not there is enough evidence for your case to go to trial, it does not determine your guilt or innocence.

If the Grand Jury decides that there is enough evidence against you for the charges to go forward, formal charges will be filed in a process known as your arraignment where you will be able to enter a plea. At this point, you will be able to enter a plea bargain that, if both parties accept the arrangement, will be the end of your case.

If your case does not result in a plea agreement, it will proceed to a trail by jury. After your trial is complete, a verdict will be decided upon. After this point, you may decide to challenge your sentence and the verdict in an appeal.

Sentences can include up to 10 years of jail time and fines of up to $150,000.

What happens if you are charged with a disorderly persons offense? 

Although disorderly persons offenses are more minor, it is important to know that they can carry stiff fines and jail time and, if convicted, the charges will show up on a criminal background check.

Once you have been charged with a disorderly persons offense, your case will be heard in a municipal court in front of a judge, as there are no Grand Juries or trials by jury for these cases. This may involve multiple appearances in court before the matter is resolved and a verdict is handed out.

Sentences in these cases can include probation, a fine of up to $1,000 and jail time of up to 6 months behind bars.

Speak to an experienced criminal defense attorney to protect your rights 

If you have been charged with an offense, no matter how minor, you can benefit from effective legal representation. Dennis Calo, a former prosecutor, offers over 40 years of experience and insight into both sides of the legal system to build a strong and robust defense for each of his valued clients.

If you want a criminal defense attorney that you can trust to defend your assault and battery case professionally and aggressively, contact us today and find out how Dennis Calo can help you. For more information, visit www.criminaldefense-nj.com.

 

This content was originally posted at http://www.criminaldefense-nj.com/blog/the-difference-between-indictable-offenses-and-disorderly-persons-offenses/