Aug 26

A woman from Bloomington, Illinois, faces felony charges for multiple drug crimes involving unlawful possession of cocaine, according to an article by The Pantagraph

Official reports indicate that a confidential source assisted in this investigation against the Illinois woman. As a result of this case, the Illinois woman faces criminal charges for:

  • Two counts of unlawful possession of cocaine (less than 15 grams); and
  • One count of unlawful possession of alprazolam, also known as Xanax. 

After arrest and booking, the Illinois woman secured her release from police custody on a personal recognizance bond in the amount of $5,000. At this juncture, the Illinois woman awaits further legal proceedings, with an arraignment scheduled for September 9, 2022. 

While this case continues to develop in court, it seems like a suitable moment to review the Illinois laws against and penalties for unlawful possession of a controlled substance. 

Illinois Laws Against Possession of a Controlled Substance

720 ILCS 570/402 provides the Illinois laws against the possession of a controlled substance. Under this section, it is unlawful to knowingly possess any controlled substance outside of narrowly construed exceptions for approved purposes. 

The key requirement under this section involves knowledge. In order to qualify as a violation, a person must know — or have a reason to know — that they are in possession of a controlled substance. Absent this type of knowledge, it does not qualify as unlawful possession under Illinois law. 

Illinois Penalties for Possession of a Controlled Substance

Section 402 also furnishes the Illinois penalties for possession of a controlled substance. But there are distinct penalties for certain types and quantities of controlled substances. Using cocaine as an example, unlawful possession of:

  • Less than 15 grams — Is a Class 4 felony that includes a prison sentence between one and three years and criminal fines up to $25,000;
  • 15 to 100 grams — Is a Class 1 felony that includes a prison sentence between four and 15 years and criminal fines up to $25,000;
  • 100 to 400 grams — Is a Class 1 felony that includes a prison sentence between six and 30 years and criminal fines up to $200,000;
  • 400 to 900 grams — Is a Class 1 felony that includes a prison sentence between eight and 40 years and criminal fines up to $200,000; or
  • At least 900 grams — Is a Class 1 felony that includes a prison sentence between 10 and 50 years and criminal fines up to $200,000.

Do You Need Legal Help?

No matter what the criminal offense is, all charges are serious. A sound strategy and an aggressive defense are essential for a positive outcome. To protect your rights in such situations, it is highly advisable to retain legal counsel from an experienced criminal defense attorney.

The Prior Law Firm in Bloomington, Illinois, has proven experience in matters of criminal defense. If you need legal help with criminal defense, contact us today for a free consultation. You can reach The Prior Law Firm by phone at (309) 827-4300, by email at johnprior@thepriorlawfirm.com, or by completing an online form.