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Zoey_ JD
Zoey_ JD, JustAnswer Criminal Law Mentor
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 26753
Experience:  Admitted to NYS Criminal defense bar in 1989. Extensive arraignment, hearing, trial experience.
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I was recently arrested of less than 50 g of marijuana, drug

Customer Question

I was recently arrested for possession of less than 50 g of marijuana, drug paraphernalia, and possession of cds in mv In New Jersey. I have a new york license, but work in new jersey during the week for work. How could this effect me?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 1 year ago.

Hello and thank you for requesting me.

In New Jersey, this is a disorderly persons offense, which is considered something less than a crime. It would be the equivalent of a violation in NYS. However, any conviction would result in a 6 month suspension of your driving priviliges for 6 months. Once NJ suspends your driving privilege, they will notify NYS, which will suspend your license. In order to get your license back, you'd have to comply with the sentence requirements in New Jersey and then jump through whatever hoops the DMV will impose on you in New York.

That said, with a lawyer you may be able to negotiate a disposition that would avoid the suspension.

I'm not sure if this is what you specificallly wanted to know, so if it is not, reply with a follow up and I will expand the answer.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
It is partly what I wanted to know, but also, they told me i was under arrest, cuffed me & took me to the station. My rights were never read to me & I wasnt told what I was being arrested for. All this, after i signed a release so they could search my car and cooperated. Did the police act appropriately?
Expert:  Zoey_ JD replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for the reply and the additional information.

One of the aspects of criminal law that non-lawyers misunderstand most is what Miranda warnings are all about. They only stand for the fact that you need not submit to post-arrest interrogation about the incident you were arrested for. If you were never questioned, then your rights never had to be read.

If you were interrogated about the incident once you were not free to leave, then you were entitled to the reading of your rights and any statement or confession you made would be improper. If you wish to fight the case, your lawyer would be able to get a special hearing as to explore and challenge any constitutional violations committed by the police. If after such a hearing the judge agrees that your Miranda rights were violated, the statements/confession unlawfully obtained would be inadmissible against you at trial.

It's a courtesy and policy to tell you what you are arrested for, but it's not illegal if they don't. In order to search your car, the police need probable cause -- a reasonable belief that you may have committed a crime -- and either a warrant or an exception to that warrant requirement. Your consent, in the form of a signed release, would make the search lawful.

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