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Samuel II
Samuel II, Attorney at Law
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 21903
Experience:  Handle criminal matters in both state and federal courts.
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My sister and husband were charged with a misdemeanor and cited

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My sister and husband were charged with a misdemeanor and cited for being in possession of 2 grams of marijuana at the Yuma border, Arizona. They were both cited-so will this should be 1 gram each? It was a very small amount anyhow. They were on vacation in the USA but have now returned to England. They were told by the officer that cited them that because they live overseas that they have to call the court to find out the fine. They called today and the court told them that they had totally been given incorrect information by the officer and that its mandatory either for them to appear to to appoint a lawyer to appear for them as they could be facing fines and possible jail time!!! This is her first ever offence- They were also told that this comes under a class 1 misdemeanor which is surprising for such a small amount. My sister told me that no amount has been written on the citation form which worries them because what if the officer just writes in any amount? This should b a class 3 for sure! please advise me what they should do now?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Samuel II replied 2 years ago.

Hi

Thank you for the information. Please help clarify for me - this is a state citation, correct? And who got the ticket? Each got a separate one? Who actually was in possession?

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I presume this is a state citation. There were 2 boxes to be checked either CC or ARS. The ARS box was checked. They both owned up to having it for personal use so they both got a separate citation. total being under 2 grams and charged with possession of marijuana
Expert:  Samuel II replied 2 years ago.

Hi

Alright. Thanks for that information. Believe it or not AZ is one of the most stringent when it comes to even simple possession of marijuana. Actually anything under 2 pounds that is not for resale is a Class 6 felony - You may read that law here. under 13-3405 and it specifically states the following:

A. A person shall not knowingly:

1. Possess or use marijuana.

2. Possess marijuana for sale.

3. Produce marijuana.

4. Transport for sale, import into this state or offer to transport for sale or import into this state, sell, transfer or offer to sell or transfer marijuana.

B. A person who violates:

1. Subsection A, paragraph 1 of this section involving an amount of marijuana
not possessed for sale having a weight of less than two pounds is guilty of a
class 6 felony.

2. Subsection A, paragraph 1 of this section involving an amount of marijuana
not possessed for sale having a weight of at least two pounds but less than four
pounds is guilty of a class 5 felony.


HOWEVER, it is what we call a "wobbler" and this means that the District Attorney can reduce the Class 6 felony to a misdemeanor. And so that is where a fine and probation would come in, because a Class 6 felony does carry jail time.

And, that is why the clerk has informed that a local AZ will be needed to negotiate with the DA to have the charge proceed as a misdemeanor. It may be possible to have one of the charges tossed completely and just have one of them charged and then there would be a probation and a fine - and a possible deferred adjudication, which means no more crimes of any sort and pay the fine and this matter will be eligible to be expunged.

So, this is why it would be imperative for them to consider consultation with an AZ attorney who can handle this for them and they will not have to travel back. If someone is not in court on their behalf, of course, it will hinder any VISA they may try to get in the future.

Please note that if you need more information, you can use the Reply to Expert to Continue the Conversation. Otherwise, I would appreciate positive ratings so that I get credit for my time and information. This will NOT close your question. It will remain active for future follow ups.

If you cannot see where to Rate me, please let me know so I can report it to the administrators of the site.

Thank you.

Customer: replied 2 years ago.
This is being processed as a class 1 misdemeanor and not a class 6 felony. I shall proceed accordingly to try and help them
Expert:  Samuel II replied 2 years ago.
Hi

Alright. As long as you are sure it is already the misdemeanor. And yes, I suggest you can contact the AZ Bar Association for a legal referral service, if you do not already have a local criminal defense lawyer to assist you.

Please note that if you need more information, you can use the Reply to Expert to Continue the Conversation. Otherwise, I would appreciate positive ratings so that I get credit for my time and information. This will NOT close your question. It will remain active for future follow ups.

If you cannot see where to Rate me, please let me know so I can report it to the administrators of the site.

Thank you.
Samuel II, Attorney at Law
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 21903
Experience: Handle criminal matters in both state and federal courts.
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