Oct 13

The North Central Narcotics Task Force completed an investigation, arrested a man and woman as well as seized large amounts of marijuana, according to an article by the Northwest Herald.

A combination of more than 50 law enforcement agencies, the North Central Narcotics Task Force investigates major crimes within Kane, McHenry and DeKalb counties. Among other criminal activities, the task force investigates gangs as well as illegal weapon and drug trafficking.

Accused of trafficking multiple ounces of illegal drugs, the man and woman face charges for possession and delivery of marijuana. In light of this news story, it feels like a great time to review Illinois laws and penalties concerning marijuana.

What is the Illinois Legal Approach to Marijuana?

Under the Cannabis Control Act (the Act), Illinois provides its state-specific approach to laws and penalties concerning marijuana, which is legally referred to as cannabis. While the Act makes it unlawful to possess marijuana, there is also some leeway for smaller amounts. Essentially, the Illinois legislature understands that marijuana use is widespread and pervasive amongst Illinois citizens.

In order to deal with this type of widespread and pervasive use, the Act sets out “reasonable penalty system” for criminal offenses involving cannabis. The penalties are relatively light for possession of smaller amounts, with more harsh penalties for possession of smaller amounts or for trafficking. Overall, Illinois seems to be less concerned with recreational use and more concerned with criminal actors that engage in trafficking and delivery.

What are the Penalties in Illinois for Possession of Marijuana?

We can find a detailed breakdown of the penalties for possession of marijuana in Illinois in Section 720 ILCS 550/4 of the Act.

  • It is a civil law violation to possess less than 10 grams.
  • It is a Class B misdemeanor to possess between 10 grams and 30 grams.
  • It is a Class A misdemeanor to possess between 30 grams and 100 grams.
  • It is a Class 4 felony to posses between 100 grams and 500 grams.
  • It is a Class 3 felony to possess between 500 grams and 2,000 grams.
  • It is a Class 2 felony to possess between 2,000 grams to 5,000 grams.
  • It a Class 1 felony to possess more than 5,000 grams.

Do You Need Legal Advice?

No matter what the criminal offense, all criminal charges are serious. Without a sound strategy and an aggressive defense, you could miss out on your best chance for a positive outcome. An experienced criminal defense attorney can help you understand the law and navigate toward an effective resolution.

Serving the counties of Dewitt, Ford, Livingston, Logan, McLean, Peoria, Tazewell, and Woodford, The Prior Law Firm is located in Bloomington, Illinois. Our attorneys are dedicated to the practice of Illinois criminal law. If you need legal advice concerning any criminal offense, please do not hesitate to contact us immediately.

You can reach The Prior Law Firm by phone at (309) 827-4300, email at johnprior@thepriorlawfirm.com or online by completing a simple form.

(image courtesy of Esteban Lopez)