Have you been arrested for the possession of drug paraphernalia in Chicago? Contact the Kostopoulos Law Group for immediate legal assistance. Our Chicago drug crime attorneys can help you fight any criminal charges you may face. The state of Illinois will aggressively prosecute any drug-related crimes, including those for possession of paraphernalia.
At the Kostopoulos Law Group, our Chicago defense attorneys are committed to helping you minimize the consequences of your arrest. Our team, led by former Assistant State’s Attorney Gus Kostopoulos, have over 30 years of combined legal experience. During this time, we successfully handled all criminal matters, including those for possession of drug paraphernalia. We understand how a criminal conviction can change your future and will fight to secure the best possible outcome in your case. Our aggressive approach keeps the prosecution on their toes and prevents them from building a strong case against our clients. This often results in getting the charges reduced or dropped altogether. Contact us today to find out how we can help you with your criminal case.
- 1 Illinois Drug Paraphernalia Possession Laws
- 2 Drug Paraphernalia Possession Penalties in Chicago
- 3 Possession of Paraphernalia
- 4 Defending Drug Paraphernalia Possession Charges
- 5 Experienced Chicago Drug Paraphernalia Attorneys
Illinois Drug Paraphernalia Possession Laws
The Illinois Drug Paraphernalia Control Act makes it a crime to knowingly possess any items that are used for the unlawful manufacture, sale, or use of a controlled substance. In other words, it is a crime to possess tools that help you make, sell, or use illegal drugs in Illinois. You can face criminal charges for the illegal possession of drug paraphernalia even if you are not in possession of any illegal drugs. However, possession of paraphernalia charges generally accompany more serious drug possession charges.
What is Paraphernalia?
The Illinois Drug Paraphernalia Control Act (720 ILCS 600/1) defines paraphernalia as “all equipment, products and materials of any kind” that “are intended to be used unlawfully’ in the:
- Packaging or repackaging
- Inhaling, or
- Otherwise introducing an illicit substance into the human body.
The drug paraphernalia laws apply to any paraphernalia used in conjunction with cannabis or another controlled substance made illegal in the Cannabis Control Act, Illinois Controlled Substances Act, Methamphetamine Control and Community Protection Act, or Illinois Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act.In simpler terms, paraphernalia is any tool that aids in the creation, distribution, or use of a controlled substance in violation of Illinois law.
Examples of Paraphernalia
When you hear the word “paraphernalia” your mind probably generates images of pipes, bongs, and needles. Paraphernalia, however, is broadly defined to include many instruments and tools associated with controlled substances. Examples of paraphernalia that, if found in your possession, could trigger criminal charges include:
- Plastic baggies
- Isomerization devices
- Diluents and adulterants used to cut products
- Water pipes
- Carburetion devices
- Cocaine spoons and viles
- Testing equipment, and
- Grow lamps.
Drug Paraphernalia Possession Penalties in Chicago
Possession of Paraphernalia
In most cases, you will face Class A Misdemeanor criminal charges if you are found to be in possession of drug paraphernalia in Chicago. A Class A Misdemeanor is punishable by one year in jail and $2,500 in criminal fines. Judges also have the authority to require the completion of mandatory substance abuse counseling and order a term of probation.
Illinois’ stance on marijuana and marijuana-related crimes is changing. While the drug is still illegal, the state’s marijuana laws are becoming more relaxed. If you are found to be in the possession of a small quantity of marijuana (< 10 grams) and marijuana paraphernalia, you will likely only be issued a citation and required to pay a small fine.
Criminal charges will be aggravated if you are in possession of drug paraphernalia and are believed to have the intent to sell a controlled substance.
Sale of Paraphernalia
It is also a crime to offer any drug paraphernalia for sale in Chicago. In most cases, you will face Class 4 Felony criminal charges if you sell or hold paraphernalia with the intent to sell for commercial purposes. This Class 4 Felony is punishable by 1-3 years in prison and $1,000 in fines for each item sold or held for sale.
Selling to a Minor: If you sell or deliver drug paraphernalia to person under the age of 18, the crime will be elevated to a Class 3 Felony. This Class 3 Felony is punishable by 2-5 years in prison and $25,000 in fines.
Selling to a Pregnant Woman: If you sell or deliver drug paraphernalia to a woman that you know to be pregnant, the crime will be elevated to a Class 2 Felony. This Class 2 Felony is punishable by 3-7 years in prison and $25,000 in fines.
Defending Drug Paraphernalia Possession Charges
Even though most drug paraphernalia possession charges are only charged as misdemeanors, a conviction can still change your life in unexpected ways. The best way to reduce the chances of this happening is by asserting a powerful defense. Any defense that you argue should help to explain or justify your alleged behavior. Defenses that may be helpful in your Illinois drug paraphernalia possession case include:
- You were not knowingly in possession of paraphernalia
- You did not have actual or constructive possession of the paraphernalia
- You have been falsely accused, or
- You were the victim of an unlawful search and seizure.
At the Kostopoulos Law Group, our Chicago drug crime attorneys will thoroughly investigate your case and make sure that your Constitutional rights have not been infringed. If law enforcement officers have violated your rights we will demand that any evidence that has been tainted by misconduct is thrown out immediately. When the state does not have evidence to support their case, they will be forced to offer a favorable deal or drop the charges in their entirety.
Experienced Chicago Drug Paraphernalia Attorneys
Are you facing criminal charges for the possession of drug paraphernalia in Chicago? Contact Chicago criminal lawyer Gus Kostopoulos today to request a free consultation. If you are convicted for possession of paraphernalia you face time behind bars, steep fines, and a future saddled with a criminal record.
Having a criminal record will make it difficult to do things you once took for granted, like finding a job or renting an apartment. As a former prosecutor, Gus Kostopoulos knows how to help you avoid these life-changing consequences. It is important to get started on your defense quickly, so do not hesitate to call today.