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Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 116789
Experience:  Attorney with over 20 years law enforcement, prosecution, civil rights and defense experience
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Hi -- I live in RI and my husband has a medical marijuana license.

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Hi -- I live in RI and my husband has a medical marijuana license. He has 2 patients. I have a brother in CA who has several medical problems that cause him almost constant severe pain. He asked me to send him some of our medical marijuana, which I did. Unfortunately, the package has been intercepted by the US Postal Service. We are worried sick about what is going to happen. Do you know the legal ramifications for us?
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking.

I am afraid that while there are medical marijuana laws in both CA and RI, it is still illegal under federal law and it is illegal to ship marijuana across state lines. Thus, the federal government can decide to charge your husband with distribution of narcotics in federal court and it is a federal felony that can carry a sentence of 5-10 years in federal prison. It also means he is likely to lose his RI license for distributing marijuana to someone other than his patients.

At this point, you need to prepare by getting yourself a criminal defense attorney that practices in federal court (not all criminal defense attorneys practice in federal court) and you should absolutely not make any statements to anyone about this matter except your attorney. If you are contacted by any authorities, refer them to your attorney to deal with them.

You can find a qualified attorney who practices in federal court by the same sites used by other attorneys, or or

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Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Does it make any difference what the amount of marijuana was? It was only 3.5 grams ... we absolutely have no past criminal records at all. It was MY CHOICE to send it to my brother WITHOUT my husband's knowledge. (Very stupid mistake on my part).

Thank you for your response and clarification.

If you admit to doing this, they could charge you and still remove your husband's license for not properly accounting for the marijuana.

For such a small amount, this is treated as a misdemeanor possession charge by the federal courts as there was no renumeration involved (no charge of money) and as such the penalty is up to 12 months in prison, but there is no mandatory minimum sentence for a first offense, meaning you are likely to end up with only probation and a fine of up to $1000. In many of these cases, depending on the US Attorney who prosecutes the case, they may agree to a low fine and probation as part of a plea agreement, but the issue of federal law and the states who say marijuana is legal has been a high profile issue so the US Attorney is not as able to give as good of a deal as they could normally do otherwise.
Law Educator, Esq. and 5 other Criminal Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Thank you very much! My husband and I have been sick with worry, but I feel quite a bit better after giving you more information and receiving your 2nd answer.

Thank you for your response.

Realize that at this point the feds do not know there was no renumeration so they could start off charging you with the felony, but upon proof that there was no renumeration the charge should be reduced to the misdemeanor.