LSD: Penalties for Sale and Possession

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 What Is LSD?

“LSD”, also known by its scientific name as lysergic acid diethylamide, is the abbreviated term for one of the most routinely cited drugs listed under a specific class of drugs called, “hallucinogens.” Some other synonyms associated with the acronym LSD include acid, mellow yellow, dots, black tabs, and blotter.

Regardless of what the drug is called, LSD is typically sold on the street in either small tablets, gelatin squares, capsules, absorbent paper, and/or in a liquid form. According to the DEA, the drug appears as a colorless and odorless substance that has a faintly bitter aftertaste.

Additionally, the schedules provided by the Controlled Substance Act (“CSA”) classify LSD as a Schedule I drug. Drugs that are categorized as a Schedule I drug are described as having some of the following characteristics:

  • A high potential for abuse and/or addiction;
  • Presently have no certified or accepted medicinal purposes; and
  • Are generally said to be unsafe for consumption.

Finally, one last important detail about LSD is that because it is considered a Schedule I drug, a defendant can face very serious legal consequences if they are convicted of a drug crime involving LSD. Therefore, if you are facing charges for the sale or possession of LSD, you should contact a local drug lawyer immediately for further advice.

What Are the Federal Penalties for LSD Sale and Possession?

In most instances, charges for possession of LSD are normally prosecuted at the state level. This is because drug crimes, such as possession and use, are usually viewed as lesser offenses since they tend to only hurt the individual and not society as a whole. On the other hand, charges for selling, manufacturing, distributing, and trafficking of LSD are more likely to be prosecuted as federal crimes.

The following is a list of some common types of criminal penalties that can be found under the federal sentencing guidelines for drug-related offenses:

  • Trafficking 1-9 grams mixture: (one dose is roughly equal to 100 micrograms of LSD, 0.5g including the paper for acid tabs):
    • First-time offense:
      • No less than 5 years’ imprisonment, but not longer than 40 years’ imprisonment.
      • If serious injury or death results, no less than 20 years, but not more than a life sentence.
      • Criminal fines must not exceed $2 million USD.
    • Second offense:
      • No less than a minimum of 10 years’ imprisonment, but no longer than a life sentence.
      • If serious injury or death results from the crime, then life imprisonment.
      • Criminal fines must not exceed $4 million USD.
  • Trafficking 10 grams or more mixture:
    • First offense:
      • No less than 10 years’ imprisonment, but no longer than a life sentence.
      • If serious injury or death results, then life in prison.
      • Criminal fines must not exceed $4 million USD.
    • Second offense:
      • No less than 20 years’ imprisonment, but no more than a life sentence.
      • If serious injury or death results, then life in prison.
      • Criminal fines must not exceed more than $8 million USD.
    • More than two prior offenses:
      • Life sentence.

To reiterate, the above list contains a broad overview of the federal sentencing guidelines for the sale and/or possession of LSD, but it does not include every type of penalty associated with these crimes. Additionally, federal penalties are constantly being amended, so the penalties can change on a regular basis. This is especially true now due to the recent trend towards reforming federal sentencing guidelines for drug crimes.

What Are Typical State Penalties for the Sale or Possession of LSD?

Although this is not always the case, many states will impose penalties for the sale or possession of LSD that mirror the penalties for the federal sentencing guidelines. As with other controlled substances, a state may also classify LSD drug crimes as either a minor offense, such as those for mere possession, or as a major offense like trafficking or manufacturing of LSD.

In addition, states may create categories known as “schedules” to classify various types of drugs. Again, while many states adopt the classification set out by the federal statute for LSD (i.e., Schedule I drug), some states that have their own drug classifications have recently started listing LSD as a Schedule II type drug. This is due to some of the findings from research studies, which show that LSD may potentially offer certain medicinal benefits.

The majority of states, however, still consider the sale and/or possession of LSD to be a crime. Thus, the following list provides some of the more common state penalties that may be issued in connection with an LSD drug crime, which include:

  • Possession for personal use of LSD: Penalties for this charge are generally issued when an individual is found in possession of three or more tabs of LSD. If convicted of these charges, a defendant can receive a sentence of one to three years in jail, plus fines ranging from anywhere between $1,000 to $25,000 or more.
  • Possession with intent to sell LSD: A defendant who has been convicted of possession with intent to sell LSD will typically receive a prison sentence, ranging between three to fifteen years, along with possible fines that start at $2,000 and increase up to $1,000,000 or more.

A number of states have also implemented rehabilitative or drug treatment programs to replace some of these harsher penalties or to supplement a convicted defendant’s criminal sentence. It should be noted that the penalties for sale or possession of LSD will vary widely from state to state.

This is because every state has adopted its own set of criminal statutes, which means that each individual state is able to prosecute and establish different forms of punishments for drug-based and/or other types of crimes. While this can be used to a defendant’s advantage in more lenient states, laws undergo constant changes and amendments, which can affect the consequences associated with them as well.

Thus, persons who are facing charges for LSD drug crimes should consult with local drug lawyers to learn more about the relevant statutes and possible punishments they can receive based on the laws enacted in their particular jurisdiction for these crimes.

Should I Contact a Drug Lawyer?

As is the case with most charges involving drug-related offenses, the penalties you can receive for being convicted of the sale or possession of LSD will likely include a jail or prison sentence. Such cases can become even more complicated when they result in two separate levels of punishment (e.g., one based on state law and the other based on federal law). This means that you will need to know the sentencing guidelines for LSD under both state and federal laws.

Thus, if you are facing criminal drug charges for the sale and possession of LSD, then it is strongly recommended that you hire a local drug lawyer immediately for further legal guidance. A lawyer who has experience in handling cases involving criminal drug charges will be able to inform you of your rights under the law as well as can discuss your options.

Your lawyer can also explain the potential penalties you might be facing and can determine whether there are any defenses available that you can raise to help get the charges dropped or at least reduced. Additionally, your lawyer can provide legal representation in criminal court during any proceedings and can file a petition on your behalf to lower your sentence and/or propose an alternative method for sentencing purposes.

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