Metro Atlanta and North Georgia Drug Crime Lawyers
Representing with Offices in Atlanta, Kennesaw, and Marietta
What is the Georgia Controlled Substance Act?
The state of Georgia regulates all drugs under the Georgia Controlled Substances
Act. Under this act, any possession of a controlled substance can be charged
as a misdemeanor or felony. The consequences of Violation of the Georgia Controlled Substances Act
(VGCSA) can have far-reaching and unexpected impacts on the rest of your
life. Even a first-time conviction for misdemeanor marijuana possession,
for example, can result in jail time, expensive fines, and a mandatory
suspension of your driver's license.
Whether your charge involves simple possession of cannabis, cocaine, heroin,
methamphetamine, prescription drugs or any other scheduled controlled
substance or if your case involves intent to distribute, it is best that
you call an experienced drug defense attorney to represent you case.
Schedule your free consultation with The Dickerson Firm – DUI and
Drug Defense Attorneysby calling
or submitting a contact form today.
Georgia’s pre-trial diversion program allows first time offenders
of certain offenses to complete specific program requirements like counseling
and community service to obtain a dismissal of their case. Upon successful
completion of the program, the charges against the individual will be
dismissed and eligible for expungement from their criminal record.
First-time offenders who have not been arrested before or been convicted
of a misdemeanor or felony can apply for a diversion program. To be eligible
a person must not have already participated in any other program before
or have any other pending charges. Some examples of
crimes that qualify for the program include misdemeanor possession of marijuana,
minor in possession of alcohol, and theft by shoplifting.
Georgia has special sentencing for
first-time offenders, depending on the severity of the alleged crime. If the crime is relatively
minor, a judge can decide whether Georgia’s First Time Offender
Act will apply to the sentencing. Georgia’s First Offender Act offers
special non-standard plea options for first offenders, and after they
serve their sentence their first-time offense will be removed from their
What are the Penalties for Drug Offenses?
First-time convictions of drug possession are punishable by 2-15 years
in jail for Schedule I or narcotic Schedule II drugs, as well as for non-narcotic
Schedule II. For Schedule III, IV, or V drugs, first-time offenses carry
1-5 years in prison. Anyone convicted under Georgia drug possession laws
will also have their driver's license suspended for 6 months upon a first offense.
The aim of conditional discharge is to educate offenders and provide them
with the knowledge to reintegrate into society and not commit the same
offense. In drug possession cases, a judge will normally impose a drug
rehabilitation program as part of a defendant's conditions. After successful
completion of all the program requirements, the court will dismiss the
charges an individual has pled guilty to, and the defendant can move forward
as if they were never convicted.
In order to qualify for a conditional discharge in Georgia, an individual
must either be charged as a first-time offender of a drug crime or as
a minor for purchasing or possessing alcohol. Drugs relevant to the first-offense
qualification can be narcotic drugs, marijuana, stimulants, depressants,
or hallucinogenic drugs.
Let an Experienced Attorney Help
A good law firm can make the difference between a felony conviction and
a clean criminal record. With proper and effective representation, most
first offenders can avoid conviction and even expunge the arrest from
their record. Every case is unique and has its own specific details, but
The Dickerson Firm – DUI and Drug Defense Attorneys can efficiently investigate the
facts of your case to determine if your rights were violated and how to
proceed in the legal process. The drug attorneys at the firm are experienced
VGCSA litigators; Attorney Jeff Dickerson is a former narcotics and organized
crime prosecutor with extensive experience handling VGCSA offenses, from
misdemeanor marijuana possession to trafficking cocaine. If you have been
arrested for VGCSA, our attorneys can help fight for your defense.
Call (678) 903-1336 or fill out this online contact form to schedule your free consultation today.