The law seriously pursues drug crimes as felony offenses. The state of California under Health and Safety Code 11379.6 prohibits the manufacturing of drugs, controlled substances, or narcotics. The law prohibits an individual from engaging or volunteering in an activity that results in the production of drugs. This means, even when you help a person that manufactures drugs, you are guilty of the crime as well. Charges on the manufacturing of drugs carry severe penalties requiring the aggressive defense to avoid a conviction. Getting a criminal lawyer to defend you against the allegations may lead you to be acquitted or charged with a lesser crime. At The Los Angeles Criminal Defense Attorney, we have experience in defending drug-related claims against our clients successfully.
Understanding the Crime of Manufacturing Drugs According to HS 11379.6
Drug crimes, as earlier mentioned, are taken seriously in California and are also expensive to defend besides the fines charged when one is convicted. Law enforcement officers aggressively pursue drug offenses in California to eliminate their use and production, as well as deter others from the crime.
If authorities believe they have a strong case against an individual, they will pursue harsh penalties according to the law. When a person is convicted of the offense, the penalties will include years in prison and hefty fines, among others. This makes it imperative for a defendant accused of violating HS 11379.6 to get a criminal lawyer to represent them in court.
When you are accused of manufacturing drugs, you will face felony charges. The law prohibits manufacturing, converting, obtaining, producing, or preparing narcotics using chemical synthesis or extraction. For instance, having a methamphetamine lab or manufacturing facility is a violation of HS 11379.6.
In California, however, an exception is made with the production of medical marijuana when it is used for medicinal purposes. Manufacturing of drugs happens when an individual engages in the step by step production of narcotics. Individuals that sell select chemicals and specialized equipment used in the manufacture can be charged with the offense as well.
What a Prosecutor Must Prove
Charging an individual with the offense of manufacturing can be easy but does not mean a conviction. A prosecutor must prove that the person possessed the drugs and the manufacture. The intention to manufacture or actual manufacturing can be a difficult element to prove.
The prosecutor must show evidence that leaves no doubt that the defendant had the intention to or was manufacturing drugs. The work of your defense attorney will be to poke holes in the prosecutor's theory or evidence to create reasonable doubt and get you acquitted of the offense or charged with a lesser charge.
Defining Controlled Substance
When a person faces prosecution for manufacturing drugs or controlled substances, it includes any product found under HS 11054-11058. A controlled substance, as defined under this statute, is a product whose possession, production, and use is regulated or controlled by the state according to the United States Controlled Substances Act. Some of the common drugs or substances that individuals are charged with manufacturing are:
- X or ecstasy, this is controlled as well under drug laws of California
- Heroin, equally controlled in California
- Cocaine and cocaine base drugs
- Marijuana also regulated in California
- PCP regulated in California
- LSD, regulated under the law in California
- Methamphetamines or meth, also regulated under the law.
In California, when charged with the crime of manufacturing drugs, you cannot claim that you did not complete the process as a defense. The offense is said to be completed according to the law when you knowingly engage in the first steps of processing the drugs.
Although when a person is accused of violating HS 11379.6, they face serious felony charges, there are various legal defenses a lawyer can use in their case. When you are charged with this offense, do not assume that you can sufficiently defend yourself. Hiring a defense attorney will help you because he or she will investigate the circumstances of your arrest and the elements of the offense to get a defense strategy. Your lawyer will know if there are any loopholes in the prosecutor's case and will exploit them to your advantage.
Some of the defenses your lawyer will use are:
1. You Were Only Preparing Not Manufacturing
You cannot be accused of the offense when you only prepared to produce the drugs but never got to do it. Until you are actively engaged in the process, you are not in violation of HS 11379.6. For instance, if you got arrested with all the necessary items required for manufacturing hashish, you can be accused of the offense. However, hashish is obtained from marijuana, and if you had no cannabis with you, you could defend yourself by saying you thought against the manufacture because it was not wise. When your lawyer convinces the jury of this argument, you will be charged with a lesser offense of trying to manufacture but not the actual manufacturing of the drug.
The court is likely to prefer lesser charges against them by reasoning that besides the intentions being clear, having the equipment used in the manufacture is only preparation. When the police arrested the defendant, he or she was unable to manufacture the hashish because the equipment never got assembled. Secondly, the defendant never had the essential item, the marijuana.
By the use of this defense also, the court is unable to conclude whether you just got ready to manufacture the drug or you tried to produce it but got stopped by the police. This creates reasonable doubt in the prosecutor's case, making them prefer lesser charges against you.
2. Unlawful Search and Seizure
Irrespective of if you are manufacturing controlled substances or drugs violating HS 11379.6, you have a right to decline the illegal or unlawful search. The police in arresting you must adhere to the search and seizure laws of California. If you got detained by the police without them following the law, the arrest was illegal, and any evidence they obtained cannot be used against you. This means if the officers enter the premises where supposedly manufacturing drugs is going on:
- Without a legal search warrant
- With no probable cause
- They carry out a search that goes beyond the specification of the warrant
Any evidence obtained from the unlawful search cannot be used against you in court. This, in most cases, would get your charges lessened if not dropped.
3. You Were At The Wrong Place At The Wrong Time
Drug users, when they know a person that engages in the manufacturing of the controlled substances, they may go there to obtain them. Additionally, other people may have come there without the knowledge that the person manufactures drugs, but the police raid the premises when they are there. For instance, a person may be making hashish in their house from one room but is hosting guests that do not know about the business. If the police raid the premises, every person found there will be charged with violating HS 11379.6.
If this was the case, you can prove through your lawyer that you were a regular visitor and be acquitted. Most clandestine labs used in the manufacture of these drugs are in homes where the persons live. Likely, their visitors would not know what they do; hence they are not guilty by being at the premises. On the other hand, if you were there to buy for your use, you will face lesser charges than those of manufacturing the drugs.
Your lawyer can investigate the circumstances of the arrest and present evidence in court that will absorb you of any charges. Without a lawyer, however, it may be challenging to convince the court, and you end up being wrongly convicted of a crime you never committed.
4. False Arrest or Mistaken Identity
Accusations can be falsified, or mistaken identity is common in criminal cases. If a person wants revenge against you for a deal gone wrong, he or she can plant evidence in your home and tip the police of the alleged manufacturing. When the police find the paraphernalia used in the manufacture of drugs will arrest the supposed perpetrator without knowing the truth. The presence of these things is enough evidence to convict you if you do not have a lawyer to represent you.
Other times, you can be arrested if you fit the description of a person that is suspected of manufacturing drugs. Having a criminal lawyer becomes crucial because he or she will investigate the circumstances around your arrest and the prosecutor's evidence against you. Out of this, your lawyer will be able to notice any inconsistencies. As a result, he or she will file a motion for the police to reveal their informant.
This will give your lawyer a chance to question the person that tipped the police, and you can help by explaining why the person would falsely accuse you of the offense. Sometimes a person can also accuse you of the crime because they want to cover their crime or to make a deal with the police against a crime they committed.
Your lawyer will be able to unmask the evidence from the unreliable witness or the wrong identity and get you acquitted of the charges. Many defendants are wrongly convicted of offenses they never committed when a defense attorney does not adequately represent them. Allegations of manufacturing drugs can alter your life forever, making it essential to ensure you receive a fair trial where you can defend yourself.
Penalties for Violating HS 11379.6 – Manufacture of Drugs
When charged with manufacturing drugs, you face felony charges that attract harsh penalties. The penalties, in this case, depending on where the drugs were made from and the quantities involved. The criminal background of the perpetrator and the presence of other crimes are also taken into consideration.
The penalties for manufacturing drugs when convicted of the offense include state incarceration for 3, 5, or 7 years, with a hefty $50,000 fine, or less.
If the drugs were getting manufactured in large quantities, a defendant is likely to receive additional years on their prison time, not exceeding fifteen years. The law also prohibits any person from helping in the manufacture of drugs or offering to produce them. Even when the drugs never get manufactured, if convicted of the offense, you will face state imprisonment of 3, 4, or 5 years.
To get convicted of this offense, it does not require you to have completed the process, but only for you to have had the knowledge and participated in the initial stages.
Some factors will enhance the penalties a defendant may receive for this offense. These are:
- While manufacturing, causing injuries or death
- Manufacturing large amounts of particular drugs
- Manufacturing drugs when there are minors present
- Having a drug-related conviction in your criminal record
Manufacture of Large Amounts of Drugs
Being charged with manufacturing drugs is a severe felony with harsh penalties. When the charges involve you making drugs that contain methamphetamines, PCP, or GHB, you face additional penalties. The court will sentence you to more time in prison that is served at the same time if you exceed the following volumes:
- Further three years in jail if the substance in liquid form is over three gallons or three pounds if solid.
- Further ten years when the substance is more than twenty-five gallons. Or ten pounds in solid form.
- Additional fifteen years when the substance is over 105 gallons. Or 44 pounds.
When Injuries or Death is Suffered
When a defendant is convicted of the offense of manufacturing narcotics, and the act resulted in a fatality or injuries of a person, not an accomplice, they will face additional penalties. For each injury or death caused, the defendant faces another year of state imprisonment served consecutively.
Manufacturing Drugs with Minors Present
When you are convicted of manufacturing or producing drugs with a child below sixteen on the premises, you may get ordered to serve a longer sentence. You will also get a longer sentence when you get convicted of producing meth within 200 feet of an inhabited structure or residence.
When the court convicts you of manufacturing meth or trying to produce it or PCP, you will receive harsh penalties. If a minor below 16 is present at the time, you will face an additional two years to your sentence. These extra years will be served consecutively with your standard sentence of manufacturing drugs.
In case a child below sixteen present at the time suffers significant injuries. As a result, you will receive an additional five years to your sentence. This will also be served consecutively with your other sentence.
Having a Previous Drug-Related Conviction
When you get convicted of producing or manufacturing drugs or attempting to, a prior drug-related conviction can aggravate the charges against you. Some of these crimes in your record that can enhance your penalties include:
- Having a previous conviction for violating HS 11351 – The law against having controlled substances or narcotics for sale
- Having a prior conviction for violating HS 11352 – The law against selling or transporting narcotics or controlled substances
- A previous conviction of violating HS 11378 – The law against having meth for sale
- A prior conviction for violating HS 11379 – The law prohibiting the selling of meth.
When you have a previous conviction on one or more of the above offenses, for each of the felony convictions, you will get an additional three years to your prison sentence. This is irrespective of whether your prior conviction resulted in a jail sentence or not. This means, even when your prior conviction resulted in you getting drug diversion, you will still receive an additional three years to your prison sentence.
Sometimes, a person accused of a nonviolent drug offense can get sentenced to drug diversion instead of a prison sentence. This is typically when the defendant is sentenced to receive treatment alternatively. Some of the programs under drug diversion in California are:
- As found under PEN 1000
- Proposition 36 and
- California drug court
One of the advantages for a person ordered to a drug diversion program is that they can get their charges dropped. But, this is only possible when the defendant completes the treatment program successfully. The drug diversion program is not available to every person and has various restrictions or limitations.
One of the most significant limitations is the crime must get linked to the simple or basic possession of the narcotics for private use. Your lawyer must persuade the prosecution:
- The drugs you were producing or manufacturing were for personal use and not for selling or
- To permit you to take a plea deal and get convicted of a lesser crime, that of simple or basic possession. If this is accepted, you may find yourself ordered to one of the programs discussed above.
Several crimes are also related to the offense of manufacturing drugs. The crimes will get charged alongside the crime of making drugs, or instead of it. Some of the commonly related crimes are:
HS 11350 – possession of a controlled substance and HS 11377 – Possession of Meth
Under HS 11350, it is a criminal offense to have controlled substances such as:
- Crack or cocaine
- GHB and prescription drugs like
- Vicodin and
Prescription drugs must get prescribed lawfully, but when not and are found in your possession, it is an offense under the law. The ownership of Meth under HS 11377 is prohibited. When you are charged with manufacturing drugs under HS 11379.6, getting found with the substances will attract another charge. This means you will not only get charged with the manufacturing of the drugs but also with their possession.
If you get charged with the offense of manufacturing drugs and no drugs were found on you, then you will not be charged with the additional crime of possession of drugs. If you get convicted for possession of the drugs under HS 11350, it is a wobbler offense, and the penalties you will receive are in addition to those of the manufacturing of drugs.
The prosecutor in deciding how to charge you will look at the circumstances of the offense. Your criminal past also is taken into consideration. If you get a misdemeanor conviction for possession of drugs only, you will receive county imprisonment for a year or less with a fine not exceeding $1,000.
If you are found in possession of the drugs and charged with a felony offense, your conviction will attract a county jail time of sixteen months, two years or three, with a fine not over $10,000.
This is a common offense charged against people that may be found obtaining narcotics at the place with the clandestine lab. Some individuals found with simple possession may get ordered into a drug diversion program.
But, when you are manufacturing and found with large quantities, it aggravates the charges, and you are faced with additional penalties as earlier discussed.
HS 11351 – Possession of Drugs for Sale
In most cases, when a person is involved in manufacturing drugs, they do that to sell them. When you get charged with the manufacturing of drugs, most likely, you will get accused of selling them as found under HS 11351. This crime is severely punished because of the fact of selling them to others.
When you get charged and found with drugs, you are likely to be charged with both the production and possession for sale. Having drugs for sale is a felony offense that is punishable with a year of county imprisonment or less, together with probation. Alternatively, the defendant can get jailed for two or three or four years instead of probation.
When you get convicted of the offense of manufacturing drugs, it attracts other drug-related charges because it is taken to be a business where one will distribute and sell the drugs. Additional charges a defendant may face include:
- HS 11352 – Selling or transporting of narcotics
- HS 11550 – Being intoxicated by controlled substances
- HS 11364 – Having drug paraphernalia
- HS 11366.5 – Permitting the manufacturing of drugs in your home or a structure you control
Find a Criminal Lawyer Near Me
Charges on manufacturing drugs are some of the most severe drug-related felonies. A conviction for this offense can result in a defendant facing many years in state prison as well as paying hefty fines. When faced with these charges, you can have them dropped to a lesser charge or get acquitted if wrongly accused. To have the opportunity for better outcomes, you need a criminal lawyer to defend you against the allegations. At The Los Angeles Criminal Defense Attorney, we have extensive experience in defending our clients against drug crimes. Find us at 310-564-2605, and let us offer you the defense you deserve.