Ketamine, a type of club drug, is a Schedule I drug in the United States. The controlled substance is considered to be highly addictive and have no medical use. In California, possessing ketamine is illegal and is defined as unlawfully having the drug in a useable amount. But in California, selling ketamine is a separate charge.

What is Selling a Controlled Substance?

Selling a controlled substance is often generally defined as drug trafficking. Drug trafficking involves the possessing, selling, manufacturing or distributing of a controlled substance.

How is Selling Ketamine Defined in California?

In California, the selling of ketamine is defined as exchanging the drug for something of value, like money, services, and/or goods. 

What Does the State Have to Prove to Convict Me?

The state must prove the defendant: 

  • Offered to sell someone a controlled substance;
  • Intended to sell the ketamine; and/or
  • The controlled substance was actually ketamine.

What is the Punishment for Selling Ketamine in The State?

In California, the sale of ketamine is considered a wobbler, meaning it can be charged as a felony or misdemeanor. The severity of the charge will depend on the facts of the case.

If the defendant is convicted of a misdemeanor, they can face up to 1 year in jail and a fine of up to $1,000. But if the defendant is convicted of a felony, they may face 16 months to 3 years in prison with a fine of up to $10,000.

Are There are Defenses I Can Use?

Yes. The specific defenses available will depend on the case. However, there are some common defenses including:

  • No intent to sell the drug
  • No control over the drug
  • Lack of knowledge about its presence
  • Illegal search and seizure
  • Entrapment
  • No knowledge that it was an actual drug 

Can a Lawyer Help Me with My Drug Case?

Yes. A California criminal lawyer will help you determine the best defense strategy to use and work on getting the charge reduced.