Several states have decided to legalize marijuana for either medical or recreational use. There are others who are working toward decriminalizing the possession of this drug. Then there is Louisiana. Generally speaking marijuana possession, sales and trafficking are all still crimes in this state. Anyone facing marijuana-related drug charges could be dealing with significant penalties if convicted.
Let's back up just a little bit. In 1991, the state passed a law legalizing medical marijuana. However, there is currently nowhere in Louisiana for those with medical approval to fill their marijuana prescriptions, as marijuana sale -- as previously stated -- is a crime. Lawmakers have tried over the years to pass bills to help with this issue, but they have all failed to achieve senate approval.
The consequences for marijuana-related crimes vary. Under current laws, a first-time possession offense could garner a jail sentence of up to six months and a fine of $500. The penalties only increase with each subsequent possession offense. If sales or trafficking charges enter the picture, one may be looking at up to 80 years imprisonment, hard labor and fines up to $1,000,000.
The state simply does not treat marijuana-related drug crimes lightly. Louisiana residents who find themselves facing drug charges for marijuana possession, sales or trafficking do have the right to defend themselves. An experienced attorney who has first-hand experience handling such cases could prove to be a valuable asset in court. With help, those accused of marijuana-related crimes will be able to make informed legal decisions and work toward achieving the best outcome possible.
Source: FindLaw, "Louisiana Marijuana Laws", Accessed on April 18, 2018