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Ohio Trafficking Penalties Can Be Harsh

Ohio Trafficking Penalties under state law can be very strict and a person convicted of this offense may face severe consequences. The penalties for drug trafficking in Ohio may include one or more of the following sentences; fines, cancellation of license, forfeiture of property or a potential prison sentence. The sentence for drug trafficking depends on the type of drug, the place where the deal was fixed and its proximity to a school and the amount of the drug.

Under Ohio law, when a person is suspected of knowingly selling or offering to sell a controlled substance, the charge is referred to as drug trafficking. Ohio state laws define a controlled substance as a compound, drug, mixture or substance included in schedules I to V of the Ohio Revised Code and the United States Attorney General’s Office. See Ohio Revised Code Section 2925.03(C)(2).

Ohio Trafficking Penalties Are Very Specific to Each Case

Ohio trafficking penalties vary based on: the type of Controlled Dangerous Substance (CDS); the amount of the CDS that is allegedly trafficked (as determined by way of a certain “bulk amount” that is assigned to each schedule for drug – so the higher the schedule the less one would have to possess to get a stiffer sentence, as opposed to a lower category Controlled Dangerous Substance); whether or not the one who possess the drug in question simply had the intent to distribute, or has distributed, and if so, whether or not he is also the producer or manufacturer of the drug; and, finally, the extent of incriminating evidence.

Ohio Drug Classifications

Ohio trafficking penalties are very different than in many other parts of the nation.

The classification of drugs in Ohio and the sentencing under Ohio drug laws, are very particular to the specific laws instituted by the state legislature, and vary considerably from the penalties instituted and enforced in other states.

The classification of drugs in Ohio is under 5 separate lists (otherwise known as schedules, and these are ranked from 1 to 5: ranging from more to less dangerous classifications). The higher the classification, the greater the potential for misuse and abuse, and therefore the greater the penalties.

The most commonly trafficked drugs may consist of illegal drugs, controlled substances, medication, chemicals and prescription drugs. The classification of drugs in Ohio is determined under the Ohio Revised Code by different schedules between Schedule I to V.

Schedule I contains the most addictive drugs which have little or no medicinal use, progressing on to Schedule V, which is a list of substances which are least addictive.

Under Ohio law, if controlled substance in Schedule I or II, are used in the alleged drug deal, then it is known as aggravated trafficking of drugs. See Ohio Revised Code Section 2925.03.

The penalty for offenses including drugs listed in Schedule I and II are also severe. The substances included in Schedule IV and V contains drugs that have common accepted medicinal use in the United States and include prescription drugs such as Valium, Xanax, Ephedrine and small amounts of medications using narcotics.

Health professionals who are authorized to prescribe and sell these drugs and medications generally will not get charged for trafficking which are used for medication, unless the professional is suspected of diverting or improperly dispensing the medication.

Trafficking in Ohio is very risky, as Ohio’s complex system of penalties clearly shows. A lot of the time regular people are charged with possession or trafficking of drugs as well – not just hardened criminals, as the popular stereotype would suggest. Unlike other states, Ohio chooses to take not just form and quantity into consideration when charging someone with violating CDS laws – they take many other factors into account as well. Penalties can be harsh and, if the person is convicted, usually incorporate some measure of a fine, felony charges, or possibly prison time.

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Burke, Meis & Associates


625 City Park Ave, Suite 200A
Columbus, Ohio 43206