Will my legally purchased “out-of-state” Marijuana get me arrested in NJ?
It is common for people to travel from New Jersey, where recreational marijuana use is illegal, to nearby states, where it is legal, so that they can smoke up without legal consequences. If you are a marijuana aficionado, you must be mindful that not all of your purchases in other states are legal in NJ.
New Jersey State Police have a special task force assigned to patrolling the border state highways. You might think you’ve found a legal loophole but as long as weed is illegal in NJ, you can be sure that the police will guard the backdoor.
A growing number of American states have legalized weed. Trips to states where marijuana is legal to purchase and consume recreationally are extremely popular with certain people who live in states where recreational marijuana use is illegal.
However, this rise in marijuana-related vacations has led to a rise in law enforcement crackdowns. Though medical marijuana is legal in New Jersey, possession of marijuana for recreational purposes is still against the law. As such, there could be serious consequences if you’re found with the substance in your possession without medical authorization.
Penalties for Marijuana Possession
Look, if you want to go to Vermont and toke like Cheech and Chong, God bless you and God bless America.
As long as you follow the laws in the state where you travel to (i.e. you are over the age of 21 and don’t consume in a public area), you are not breaking any laws and you won’t be charged with anything when you get back to New Jersey. The problem for you is if you bring the marijuana back to NJ with you.
The penalty for possession of marijuana in New Jersey depends on the amount that is found on you. Possession of 50 grams or less is considered a “disorderly persons” offense that can be penalized by up to six months in jail and a fine of up to $1,000. Possession of more than 50 grams carries up to 18 months in prison and a fine of up to $25,000.
These penalties are less severe than the penalties for possession of marijuana with the intent to distribute. People who take these out of state vacations sometimes bring home a collection of marijuana that they can then distribute to others. Possession with intent to distribute is treated the same as actual distribution of the substance. Having just one ounce in your possession with the intent to distribute is punishable by at least three years in prison and a fine of up to $25,000. If you’re found in possession with the intent to distribute within 1,000 feet of a school or school bus, the fine then becomes $150,000.
Enjoy your vacation but don’t bring your marijuana back to New Jersey.
If you do bring marijuana over state lines and are arrested for it, don’t risk getting a conviction. Drug convictions ruin your chances of getting a good job and even attending college. If you’ve taken a marijuana-related vacation that resulted in an arrest, let us protect you.
Reach out to the experienced and aggressive attorneys at Peyrouton Law today.
Call 201-766-4800 for a FREE consultation.