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Trafficking in Marijuana

Houston Marijuana Trafficking Attorney

Marijuana, also known as cannabis, “pot,” “ganja,” “weed,” “reefer,” “bud,” or “chronic,” is the most seized smuggled drug from Mexico to Texas. In 2009, over 750,000 pounds of marijuana were seized on the Mexico/Texas border alone.

Houston Marijuana Trafficking Attorney

If you find that you or someone you know has been charged with trafficking marijuana in Texas, it is imperative to call an experienced criminal defense attorney who will try to reduce your charge or have it dismissed altogether. As a former Harris County Criminal Defense Attorney and current member of the NORML legal committee, Matt Horak has a deep understanding of marijuana laws in Texas.

Call Texas criminal defense attorney Matt Horak if you have been arrested for marijuana trafficking in Harris, Montgomery, Fort Bend, Brazoria, Galveston, or Liberty counties at (713) 225-8000 or toll-free at (800) 225-8009 for a free consultation.


Marijuana Trafficking Information Center


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Federal Offenses and Penalties for Trafficking Marijuana

If you are caught importing marijuana into Texas from Mexico, you can be charged with a federal or state criminal offense, or both. You can be charged with a federal offense for crossing the border between two countries with intent to sell marijuana, for crossing state borders with the intent to distribute marijuana, or even moving through the state of Texas with the intent to sell marijuana.

Federal offenses for trafficking marijuana are described in the Controlled Substance Act under 21 U.S.C. § 807 et seq. Marijuana is classified as a Schedule I drug, which means it is extremely likely to be abused and has no other known or accepted medical uses. The penalties for trafficking marijuana are as follows:

Marijuana

1,000 kilograms or more mixture; 1,000 or more plants

First Offense:
Not less than 10 years, and not more than life; if death or serious injury is involved, not less than 20 years or more than life in prison. Fine of not more than $4,000,000 if an individual, and not more than $10,000,000 if not an individual.

Second Offense:
Not less than 20 years, and not more than life; if death or serious injury is involved, life in prison. Fine of not more than $8,000,000 if an individual, and not more than $20,000,000 if not an individual.

100-999 kilograms mixture; 100-999 plants

First offense:
Not less than 5 years, and not more than 40 years; if death or serious injury is involved, not less than 20 years to life in prison. Fine no more than $2,000,000 if an individual and no more than $5,000,000 if not an individual

Second Offense:
Not less than 10 years, and not more than life; if death or serious injury is involved, not less than 20 years or more than life in prison. Fine of not more than $4,000,000 if an individual, and not more than $10,000,000 if not an individual.

Marijuana

50-99 kilograms mixture; 50-99 plants

First Offense:
Not more than 20 years; if death or serious injury is involved, not less than 20 years or more than life in prison. Fine of not more than $1,000,000 if an individual, and not more than $5,000,000 if not an individual.

Second Offense:
Not more than 30 years; if death or serious injury is involved, life in prison. Fine of not more than $2,000,000 if an individual, and not more than $10,000,000 if not an individual.

1-49 plants; less than 50 kilograms mixture

First Offense:
Not more than 5 years; fine of not more than $250,000 if an individual, and not more than $1,000,000 if not an individual.

Second Offense:
Not more than 10 years; fine of not more than $500,000 if an individual, and not more than $2,000,000 if not an individual.

Hashish

More than 10 kilograms hashish

First Offense:
Not more than 20 years; if death or serious injury is involved, not less than 20 years or more than life in prison. Fine of not more than $1,000,000 if an individual, and not more than $5,000,000 if not an individual.

Second Offense:
Not more than 30 years; if death or serious injury is involved, life in prison. Fine of not more than $2,000,000 if an individual, and not more than $10,000,000 if not an individual.

10 kilograms or less

First Offense:
Not more than 5 years; fine of not more than $250,000 if an individual, and not more than $1,000,000 if not an individual.

Second Offense:
Not more than 10 years; fine of not more than $500,000 if an individual, and not more than $2,000,000 if not an individual.

Hashish Oil

More than 1 kilogram of hashish oil

First Offense:
Not more than 20 years; if death or serious injury is involved, not less than 20 years or more than life in prison. Fine of not more than $1,000,000 if an individual, and not more than $5,000,000 if not an individual.

Second Offense:
Not more than 30 years; if death or serious injury is involved, life in prison. Fine of not more than $2,000,000 if an individual, and not more than $10,000,000 if not an individual.

1 kilogram or less

First Offense:
Not more than 5 years; fine of not more than $250,000 if an individual, and not more than $1,000,000 if not an individual.

Second Offense:
Not more than 10 years; fine of not more than $500,000 if an individual, and not more than $2,000,000 if not an individual.


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Texas Marijuana Trafficking Offenses

Under the Texas Controlled Substances Act, it is a crime to deliver or import marijuana in Texas. According to the Texas Health and Safety Code § 481.120, the delivery or importation of marijuana can lead to the following charges:

  • Delivery or importation of ¼ ounce or less is a Class B misdemeanor as long as the person committing the offense does not receive payment for the delivery.
  • Delivery or importation of ¼ ounce or less is a Class A misdemeanor if the person committing the offense does receive payment for the delivery.
  • You can be charged with a state jail felony if the amount is less than or equal to 5 pounds, but more than ¼ of an ounce.
  • If the amount of marijuana is 50 pounds or less, but more than 5 pounds, you can be charged with a second-degree felony.
  • You can be charged with a first-degree felony if the amount is 2,000 pounds or less, but more than 50 pounds.
  • If the amount is more than 2,000 pounds, then punishment is 10 years to life in prison and fine of $100,000 or less.

Additionally, in Texas, it is a second-degree criminal offense to deliver marijuana to a child or someone who is enrolled in secondary school (TX Health & S § 481.122).


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Texas Penalties for Trafficking Marijuana

The Texas Penal Code describes punishments for trafficking marijuana in Texas.

  • Sec. 12.21 - Class A Misdemeanor: A fine of less than $4,000 and/or jail time of less than or equal to one year
  • Sec. 12.22 - Class B Misdemeanor: A fine of less than $2,000 and/or jail time of less than or equal to 180 days
  • Sec. 12.32 - First Degree Felony: 5 years to life in prison and a fine of less than or equal to $10,000
  • Sec. 12.33 - Second Degree Felony: 2 to 20 years in prison and a fine of less than or equal to $10,000
  • Sec. 12.34 - Third Degree Felony: 2 to 10 years in prison, and a fine of $10,000 or less
  • Sec. 12.35 - State Jail Felony: 180 days to 2 years in jail, and a fine of less than or equal to $10,000

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Defenses to Marijuana Trafficking in Texas

Defenses to trafficking marijuana in Texas can include:

  • The marijuana was not in your possession or belonged to someone else;
  • The police did not have legal cause to stop your vehicle, or search your person or vehicle;
  • Entrapment due to the involvement of an undercover agent or confidential informant;
  • The marijuana was not intended for human consumption;
  • The marijuana has been approved for a new drug application under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act; or
  • The marijuana is exempt for investigational purposes under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act.

Also, if the alleged offense is delivery to a child, defenses can include:

  • The person who committed the offense was a child when the offense was committed, or
  • The alleged offender was younger than 21 years old when the offense was committed, they delivered less than or equal to ¼ of an ounce, and did not receive payment for delivering the marijuana.

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Horak Law | Texas Marijuana Trafficking Defense Attorney

If you have been charged with trafficking marijuana into Harris County, Brewster County, Cameron County, Culberson County, El Paso County, Hidalgo County, Hudspeth County, Jeff Davis County, Kinney County, Maverick County, Presidio County, Starr County, Terrell County, Val Verde county, Webb County or Zapata County, contact Horak Law to discuss the particular facts of your case, and your possible defenses.

There are many options to reduce or eliminate your charges, and finding an aggressive marijuana defense attorney is your best option to avoid severe punishment. Lawyer Matt Horak is an experienced drug trafficking attorney, and will aggressively fight for your rights. Contact Matt Horak at (713) 225-8000 for a free consultation about your alleged marijuana trafficking charge.


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Our Office in The Woodlands
1790 Hughes Landing Blvd #400 The Woodlands, TX 77380 (281) 907-4990
Our Office in Houston
5300 Memorial Dr #750 A Houston, TX 77007 (713) 225-8000
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Matt Horak Matt Horak is Board Certified in Criminal Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization since 2014